Dr. Niepa is an assistant professor of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering at the Swanson School of Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh. He held a Postdoctoral Fellowship for Academic Diversity at the University of Pennsylvania (Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering), working with Professors Kathleen Stebe, Daeyeon Lee and Mark Goulian (Biology) to develop new culture methods to study microbial dynamics in artificial microniches and thin films. Dr. Niepa started his academic journey in the Ivory Coast, where he received his Associate Degree in Food Science and work experience at the Pasteur Institute. He then moved to Germany to study Bioengineering at the University of Dortmund and transferred to Syracuse University. He received his B. Sc. in Bioengineering (2009) and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering (2014) with honor from Syracuse University. His doctoral study of the Electrochemical Control of Bacterial Persister Cells (ECCP) focused on developing a technology against drug-resistant and persistent bacteria, which was awarded US patents (US Patent 8,663,914 & US Patent 8,569,027). Also, Dr. Niepa co-founded in 2011 Helios Innovative Technologies Inc. (now PurpleSun Inc.), a medical device company that develops automated sterilization systems to fight bacterial cross-contamination. Since 2017, he leads the Biointerface Lab (at Pitt) in multidisciplinary approaches to solve problems associated with microorganisms relevant to the environment, healthcare, and food industry.