Students honored for Third-Year Talks at 20th annual Graduate Student Research Symposium

Eight graduate students in their third years were selected as winners of the department’s 20th annual Graduate Student Research Symposium, sponsored by PPG. The winning speakers were selected by the guest and faculty judges.

portrait of Margaret Clapham

Margaret Clapham
Advisers: Professors Christopher Douglas & Renee Frontiera
Lattice Phonon Raman Spectroscopy as a Tool to Understand and Characterize Rubrene Polymorphs

portrait of Cecilia Douma

Cecilia Douma
Adviser: Professor Michael Bowser
Development of a microfluidic platform for the quantification of catalytic nucleic acids

portrait of Celina Harris

Celina Harris
Adviser: Professor R. Lee Penn
Iron Oxide Reactivity Under Environmentally Relevant Conditions

portrait of Eliza Herrero

Eliza Herrero
Adviser: Professor Philippe Bühlmann
Potentiometric Sensors with Embedded Plasticized Poly(vinyl chloride) Membranes

Huankan Hu

Quin Hu
Adviser: Professor Jason D. Goodpaster
Machine learning for bond breaking: Training CASPT2 level neural network potentials for carbon carbon dissociation in alkanes

portrait of Shelby McGuire

Shelby McGuire
Adviser: Professor Nicholas Race
Regiodivergent opening of phenonium ions to synthesize 4-membered spirocycles

portrait of Casey Ritts

Casey Ritts
Adviser: Professor Thomas Hoye
Sulfurane [S(IV)]-mediated fusion of benzynes leads to helical dibenzofurans

portrait of Yuxin Wang

Yuxin Wang
Adviser: Professor C. Daniel Frisbie
Electronic Control of Electrochemical Reactions at Ultrathin ZnO Electrodes

Students presented their research via Zoom on May 20, 2021. Guest judges were Dr. David Stone from PPG, Dr. Dipannita Kalyani from Merck, Dr. Jacob DeForest from Pfizer, and Dr. Anna Belu from Medtronic. Faculty judges were professors Jiali Gao, Marc Hillmyer, R. Lee Penn, Valerie Pierre, William Pomerantz, Courtney Roberts, Sapna Sarupria, and Jane Wissinger.

Judges considered if the student effectively communicated their research; displayed strong critical thinking and problem-solving skills; highlighted the contribution of others if working on a team program; and highlighted important safety aspects of their work.

Support for the travel awards given to the award-winning presenters was provided by the Chemistry Student Travel Fund, established in 2007 by alumna Dr. Karen Schultz who was advised by Prof. Hillmyer, and the Paul G. and Gerda Ann Gassman Chemistry Graduate Student Fund, established in 2011 by Gerda Gassman honoring the late former department chair, Prof. Paul Gassman.

This virtual symposium was organized by Prof. Jessica Lamb, with support from Daryl Bacchus, Mollie Dunlap, and Eric Schulz.