Jess has dabbled in many areas of chemistry in various places. She spent summer 2007 working at International Flavors and Fragrances (IFF) in West Long Branch, NJ, focusing on organic synthesis of amides for possible use as flavors in soft drinks and purification of peptides for potential use as cheese flavors. She was also able to spend two weeks that summer in Europe studying environmental chemistry with a focus on analyzing pollution in the river Thames in England.
Jess spent the next summer doing inorganic, thin film synthesis and characterization at UMASS Amherst, through NSF and MassCREST funding, with an overall goal of linking HynSL covalently to the semi-conductor films to create an efficient ‘bio-inspired’ catalyst for the production of hydrogen.
In 2009, she finally completed her senior research at Marist College in analytical chemistry that focused on creating a new green method for the extraction of PCBs from sediment and soil. The main methods compared were QuEChERS (Quick, Easy, Cheap, Effective, Rugged, and Safe) method, traditional Soxhlet method, microwave assisted extraction, and simple hexanes extraction. Ultimately the goal is to monitor the Hudson River using this quick, easy, green method especially since GE was starting to dredge upstream.
B.S., Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY; Chemistry (2009)
Scholarly and Creative Work
After spending a few quarters at UCSB, as a graduate student teaching assistant teaching is something she plans to get more involved in.