USD Professor Earns Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award

University of San Diego Associate Professor of Chemistry Tim Clark is one of seven national recipients of the 2016 Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, given to faculty who excel in both teaching and undergraduate research.

Clark’s research focuses on organometallic chemistry. One project focuses on the conversion of carbon dioxide to methanol, a fuel that can replace gasoline. Through the Dreyfus award, he will receive a $60,000 research grant.

“Research support at undergraduate institutions is very important,” said Mark J. Cardillo, Executive Director of The Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation. “Nearly half of the chemists who earn a doctorate degree receive their bachelor’s degree from an undergraduate institution and research is a fundamental part of chemistry education.”

Clark is himself a graduate of the University of San Diego, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry. The research experiences he had as an undergraduate “inspired me to pursue a career in chemistry,” he said. He earned his PhD from the University of California, Irvine, before returning to teach at the University of San Diego in 2011.

“Most students join my research group as sophomores and continue through graduation, including two full-time summer research experiences,” he added. “I have the opportunity to see the students mature tremendously over this period. It is a great pleasure to fill this role as a mentor.” Clark typically mentors six to eight undergraduate students in his research group, in addition to high school students and teachers during the summer months.

Through a supplemental grant to another prestigious award, the National Science Foundation CAREER Award, Clark is currently conducting collaborative research in Spain.

The Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation is a leading nonprofit organization devoted to the advancement of the chemical sciences.

— Liz Harman