Peter Iovine, PhD

Peter Iovine
Phone: (619) 260-4028
Fax: (619) 849-8120
Office: Shiley Ctr for Science & Techn 441

Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry

  • Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, Organic Chemistry (2000) 
  • B.S., Villanova University, Chemistry
  • Skaggs Postdoctoral Fellowship, Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla CA  (2000-2002)

Peter M. Iovine, PhD, became a member of the faculty in 2002,  His teaching interests lie in the areas of organic chemistry, organometallic chemistry and polymer chemistry.   In addition to formal classroom teaching,  Iovine is interested in how community service learning can be implemented into the chemistry curriculum.  Iovine’s research bridges organic and polymer chemistry, placing an emphasis on the organic chemistry of boron and the conversion of biomass into functional materials.

Scholarly Work

Iovine’s research interests lie at the intersection of organic and polymer chemistry.  In particular, his research deals with the organic chemistry of the element boron and how the unique properties of boron can lead to the development of new materials with functional properties.  In one area of research, he is working to chemically modify an abundant bio-based polymer termed lignin.  Iovine and his research group are interested in building-up or decorating lignin’s polymeric scaffold in order to enhance the mechanical properties of this widely available renewable resource.  By chemically altering the structure of renewable bio-based polymers, he hopes to create novel natural-synthetic hybrid materials that can be used in a variety of application areas including plastics.  Iovine believes his work may impact our reliance on petrochemical feedstocks by reducing the demand for traditional synthetic polymers.  In 2008, Iovine was awarded the National Science Foundation’s most prestigious award (CAREER) in support of the early career-development activities of those teacher-scholars who most effectively integrate research and education.  

Areas of Interest

Iovine teaches organic chemistry.  In addition to both the introductory and advanced organic chemistry courses, he has taught a specialized course in organometallic chemistry and course modules in polymer chemistry.  In 2010, Iovine will teach a special topics course titled “Beyond the Lab:  Science and Scientists in the Public Arena” in which students will explore the intersection of science and the public space.  A unique aspect of the course will be the service-learning component where enrolled students engage local middle and high school students in a mutually beneficial educational experience.