Chemistry Newsletter 2015

Chair’s Column

Greetings from USD Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry!

It is my pleasure to give you an update on what has been going on in the department this past year while Tammy Dwyer is away on a well-deserved sabbatical in 2014-2015. I’m pleased to be back with the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry USD after an 18-month stint in Singapore where I had the opportunity to help start a new liberal arts college in Singapore. As interim chair this year I’ve had the pleasure of seeing continued growth in our department. We have almost 40 teaching and support staff in the department this year and we had to occupy a larger space for our welcome faculty/staff lunch back in September. The number of students declaring a major in Chemistry or Biochemistry has also grown (coincidentally) to almost 40 students per year! We have 37 graduating seniors this year, with equal or more students in the junior and sophomore cohorts. 

This year the faculty worked on redesigning and streamlining curricular requirements in both the Chemistry and Biochemistry majors. Next year we will be introducing two new upper division laboratories, Physical Methods (which will combine instrumental analysis and p-chem lab) and Advanced Synthesis (which will feature synthetic methods in organic and inorganic chemistry). Biochemistry majors will have a second semester of biochemistry lecture and a new molecular biology techniques course.

We have two new faculty members in the department this year. Jessica Bell is a biochemist with research interests in structure-function relationships in the area of host-pathogen interactions. Joan Schellinger is an organic chemist working on making peptides/polymers related to cancer therapy, vaccines and gene therapy. They have settled into USD quickly and already have 3-4 students in their research labs this semester! In a few months we will be saying goodbye to two people who will be moving. Debbie Tahmassebi will be the new Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Santa Clara University starting August 1. Fangyuan Tian, a postdoc in Lauren Benz’s research lab, will be a new assistant professor at Cal State Long Beach. Congratulations to both of them on their new positions! (We expect semi-regular visits since they’re both still in California.) There have been a number of awards for both students and faculty this year which you can read on our department news page, but I just want to highlight one. Mitch Malachowski was named 2014 California Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.

We appreciate hearing from you and keeping in touch – remember to find us on Facebook (University of San Diego Chemistry and Biochemistry) and LinkedIn (send a request to join the group “University of San Diego Chemistry and Biochemistry”).

Warmest regards,

Jeremy Kua

jeremy kua, university of san diego


Artwork by Shannen Cravens '11


USD Chemistry and Biochemistry students and faculty continue to achieve great and notable awards.  In the past year, the following honors were received:


Student Awards and Achievement

Student (Graduation Year) Award/Fellowship/Scholarship

Effie Albitz (Chemistry '17)

USD Chemistry & Biochemistry Alumni Research Fellowship (Summer 2015)

Carl Ferber (Biochemistry '16)

SURF award (ACS Division of Organic Chemistry)

Allison Linehan (Biochemistry '15)

Best Paper Award (ACS Polymer Division)

Sarah Baker ('15)

ACS 2015 Undergraduate Award in Inorganic Chemistry

Claire Tolan('17)

ACS 2015 Undergraduate Award in Analytical Chemistry
Emerald Dohleman ('16) Hayes Scholarship Project Award
Taylor Wayne Cottle ('17), Taylor Thane ('17) Beckman Award
Jason Nettleton ('15) ACS Division of Organic Chemistry, Outstanding Senior Organic Chemistry Student Award
Lea Kiefer ('14), Elizabeth Webster ('15), Sarah Baker ('15), Allison Linehan ('15) Phi Beta Kappa

Faculty Awards and Achievements

Faculty Member Award

Mitch Malachowski

California Professor of the Year Award

Lauren Benz Outstanding Undergraduate Research Mentor Award for 2014-2015

Current Post-doctoral fellows in the department 2014 - 2015

Fellow Mentor/Funding Year Post-USD employment
Fangyuan Tian Lauren Benz/
2013-2015 California State University Long Beach
Katherine McGarry Tim Clark/
Arijit Sengupta Peter Iovine/NSF RUI 2014-present  
Melanie Zauscher David De Haan/College of Arts & Sciences 2014-present  


Department News

Chemistry of Food and Cooking

florenceOver Intersession, Debbie Finocchio taught “Chemistry of Food and Cooking” in Florence, Italy for USD’s Second Year Experience (SYE) Program. The 25 students enrolled in the course satisfied their core curriculum requirement for a physical science with lab and learned about Italian culture. In addition to the lab experiments they performed – including a vitamin C mini titration, a leavening agents experiment, and an enzyme discovery experiment involving lactase and milk – students also participated in three hands-on sessions at the University’s cooking school. Here, they put their lecture concepts to the test when they made lollipops (crystalline vs amorphous solids; how to inhibit formation of large crystals); prepared several pasta sauces (hydrophilic/hydrophobic interactions; extraction; emulsions); made a fresh cheese (protein structure); and baked a traditional Florentine cake and prepared chicken cacciatore (carmelization and Maillard reactions). In class, students also sampled and evaluated local and regional wines and olive oils when learning about the chemistry of wine making and how fats and oils are produced.

In addition to the course, the students traveled with students from the three other USD SYE courses (in philosophy, religion, and art history) on a day trip to Siena and San Gimignano as well as an overnight trip to Rome. On their free days, students also traveled on their own or with the class’ Experiential Learning Professional, Jessica Hornbrook, to various cities/towns: Venice, Padua, Cinque Terre, Lucca, Pisa, and Assisi. One group even got in a day of skiing! All this, and plenty of gelato consumption while meandering the streets of Florence.

Debbie and husband Al rented an apartment in a 15 th century palazzo a five-minute walk from the University. One afternoon, the whole class went to Sant’ Ambrogio Market, then broke into groups to rotate cooking at the tiny apartment. Everyone joined up in the evening to enjoy the many veggie-rich pasta dishes and a fruit/mascarpone dessert they had prepared. 

Pete Iovine taught the first SYE Florence chemistry course in January of 2013, which also had a food and cooking theme. Mitch Malachowski is scheduled to teach the next course there in January of 2016: The Evolution of Chemistry: From Alchemy through the Renaissance to a Modern Science. Florence, Italy is an excellent location to learn chemistry!

Post-Doc Fangyuan Tian


1.  What attracted you to the University of San Diego when you were selecting a postdoctoral position?

I was attracted to USD by the research projects and a family tie. My graduate work mostly focused on single crystalline materials, so when I first talked to Dr. Lauren Benz, I was attracted by her novel ideas on a new type of material. I’ve enjoyed expanding my horizon in the field of nanoporous materials while applying my expertise obtained in graduate school. Meanwhile, my husband works in San Diego, so the family tie also brought me to this beautiful city.

2.  What have you found most enjoyable about being a postdoctoral fellow at USD?

I really appreciate my experience at USD as a postdoctoral fellow. I have such a great mentor, wonderful colleagues, and amazing students. I have learned a lot from my mentor, Dr. Lauren Benz, not only the chemical science aspect but also by observing and being a part of her success in this early stage of her career. Working in the chemistry department, sometimes I feel I have more than one mentor: whenever I have questions in a different field, I can always seek input from other faculty members. As preparing for my academic job applications, I got help from many colleagues in our department. It feels so warm when I work with my colleagues. Additionally, it was quite interesting working with undergraduates in the Benz lab. Training students in lab makes me feel I am contributing for the development of the next generation. We also had some fun activities after work and during conferences. Overall, it has been a very valuable experience for me at USD.

3. In which areas do you feel you have grown the most?

I have learned a lot in the areas of communication, pedagogy, and mentoring undergraduates in research. English is not my native language, but I practice every day while working at USD. I can feel my English has been improved in the past one and a half years. My mentor, Dr. Lauren Benz, is a very nice professor; I also learn various communication skills from her.  So far, I have learned several useful teaching strategies by going to my mentor and other faculty lectures, as well as by attending USD CEE workshops. Before joining USD, I was lacking experience working with undergrads. Working in the Benz lab, I’ve been able to directly mentor undergraduates in various activities, from searching literature to designing experiments.

4. What do you look forward to most as you begin your new position at Cal. State Long Beach?

The USD experience has helped me find my new journey. I am thrilled about the position at Cal State Long Beach. I am looking forward to starting my own research group in the field of methane capture by assembled metal organic frameworks. I hope I will recruit one or two USD students as graduate students in my lab. In the future, I also hope to build collaborations with my mentor and other faculty at USD, which will definitely enhance my career down the road.

Debbie Tahmassebi


1. What attracted you to the University of San Diego when you thought about coming here as a faculty member back in 1999?

I started out here as an adjunct faculty member (1996-1999).  I was teaching at USD on T/Th and at UCSD on M/W/F.  I also started an undergraduate research project at USD with tremendous support and space provided by Dr. Pat Traylor.  During those years it became apparent to me that I really enjoyed the focus on the teacher-scholar and the student-centered focus of the Department of Chemistry (at the time) at USD.  While I found the large lectures at UCSD exciting, I knew that I wanted to be a faculty member in a department that placed the highest value on educating students and close student-faculty interactions.  I looked at several different places but USD always emerged as the best fit for me.  Looking back on all of these years, my initial instincts were spot on. 

2. What are some of the highlights of being with our department? Any events that stand out?

The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at USD is the best department on the planet – honestly!  There are so many great memories and great moments that I’m hard pressed to select favorites.  Overall, it’s the people that make it such a wonderful place.  The faculty work together very well and are all kind, honest hard-working colleagues.  The support for work-life balance has been instrumental for me personally and I have enjoyed getting to watch other people’s families over time.

As for our students, I especially look back at the many hours I have worked with students in the classroom, office hours and research lab.  I have made many life-long friends and treasure how well people keep in touch.  I enjoy watching the success of my students.  Of course, I will remain in touch!

Overall, I feel incredibly lucky to have been a faculty member in the department as we planned for and then moved into the Shiley Center for Science and Technology.  The gift of a new amazing building doesn’t happen often.  It was so transformative to the department and for students and I’m so glad that it happened during my professional lifetime at USD. 

3. How did you decide that you were interested in doing more administrative work? What are some things you are excited about in your new position?

It really was a slow evolution.  I have always enjoyed working on projects that I felt would strengthen the department, the College and the University.  When I was getting ready for my 2 nd sabbatical, I thought that I would benefit from an experience that would strengthen my administrative skills so that I could work on these types of projects more effectively.  During that year and the couple that followed, I found that I enjoyed the administrative work and it presented exciting new challenges to me.   I am excited and sad at the same time about my new position.  I am sad to leave USD but eager to start a new phase of my career as the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Santa Clara University.

4. What do you think you will miss most about USD?

This one is the easiest of all – the people.  I have made some great friends among the students, faculty, staff and administrators.  Please don’t forget me and come visit – I will always have room for my USD friends.




The year 2014 has been fertile in instruments acquisitions. Among the most significant acquisitions made by the USD Chemistry & Biochemistry Department this year are: a top of the line QCMD balance, a modern PCR instrument, and a high performance UHPLC-MS system. The QCMD balance (quartz crystal microbalance with dissipative m instrument1easurements) measures mass changes, structural and viscoelastic properties with nanogram sensitivity. It has been put to work immediately by the Benz & Iovine research groups, and will be used as well by the Provost group in the near future. Advanced Teaching labs students will have an opportunity to experiment with this instrument to distinguish between two similar binding events or observe a phase transition or reconfiguration in bound layers. Using this instrument requires fine dexterity skills, to handle delicate gold-coated sensors, and fairly good understanding of the advanced mathematical models behind the data acquisition software.

instrument2 The robust and easy to use new BioRad PCR instrument expands the range of experiments offered by our Biochemistry Teaching labs and supports research activities as well for the Provost and Bell research groups. Using PCR (polymerase chain reaction), millions of copies of a section of DNA are made in just a few hours, yielding enough DNA required for analysis. This PCR system is widely used in both academia and industries and uses thermal cycling for DNA melting and enzymatic replication of the DNA.


The Karl Fisher Titrator will be used by Advanced and Analytical Teaching labs to determine water content in a variety of samples or solvents. It will be particularly useful for the Daley, Clark and Iovine research groups. This modern titrator by Mettler Toledo offers a simple and safe way to test for water content using electrochemistry principles. instrument4

Last but not least, the Chemistry & Biochemistry department has join forces and resources with the Biology department and the Environmental and Ocean Sciences to acquire a modern UHPLC-MS instrument from Thermo Scientific. This state-of-the-art instrument combines the analytical capabilities of a UHPLC (ultra High Pressure Liquid Chromatography) with a mass spectrometer to detect samples in the ppb (part per billion) range. It is already used on a daily basis by the DeHaan research group in Chemistry and the Baird & Morrison research group in Biology. BioPhysics Teaching labs students will get a hands on experience on this amazing instrument to identify their proteins. Instrumental Analysis Teaching labs students have already been using it to identify fake drugs.  Researchers in Biochemistry, Biology, and Environmental Chemistry groups have used it to detect pesticides residues in food samples, characterize proteins, and identify peptides based on the mass of their ionic fragments.

We plan to continue our efforts to ensure that students have access to state-of-the-art scientific instrumentation in a safe environment.


Student News

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Name: Adan Cortez
Year: Senior
Major: Biochemistry
Favorite Color: Blue
Career Aspirations: To work within the field of global health and address issues concerning water quality, HIV/AIDS, and world hunger.

Favorite Hobby: Painting

Favorite USD Memory: I have been a participant of Relay for Life for 10 years but in 2014 I decided to be part of the planning committee. After 7 months of preparation for the event, the night came to pass and was a complete success. We had the highest attendance and participation adan_cortezcompared to previous years and surpassed our fundraising goal. But, it was the thanks from a survivor that I valued the most. Relay for life is a way to heal people from cancer and to hear a survivor's story of how our work provided the means for her recovery was simply incredible.

Favorite part of working in the Chemistry Department: The people I work with.

Best Advice for Incoming Students: Never turn down free food or free information; change is the only constant, don't be afraid of what it brings; explore all the opportunities you can get your hands on - you'll find passions, strengths, and weaknesses you never knew existed.

Name: Nicholas Huynh nick_huynh
Year: Senior
Major: Biochemistry
Favorite Color: Teal
Career Aspiration: Physician and/or Breakdancer
Favorite Hobby: Olympic Weightlifting and Singing
Favorite USD Memories: Conversations after days of sleep depravation.
Favorite things about working in the Chemistry Department: Awesome Bosses! And getting a perspective on the amount of work it takes to set up labs.
Best Advice for Incoming Students: Start your assignments early! And find a stress-releasing hobby.


Hi! My name is Mary Sutton, I am a sophomore biochemistry major at USD. My ultimate goal or career outcome is to have a positive impact on society. I love to learn and listen to music and spend some of my time doing one of the two, but mostly both. Luckily, I am able to do both of these things working in the Chemistry Department. It has been an awesome time working for the department because I get to spend more time around people who share the same interests and passion. Everyone is curious about new ideas and excited to share information, which makes work lively and interesting. I feel so grateful to be given the opportunity to work with such welcoming people!  Each person brings a different energy to the table and has a unique perspective on the universe- so thoughtful conversations are inevitable. I have to thank the wonderful people of the Chemistry & Biochemistry Department for making my time at USD as meaningful as possible.

2015 Alumni Summer Research Fellowship Award


It is thanks to all of you, alumni from our department, who have given back generously that we can continue to support research by current undergraduates.  The Alumni Summer Research Fellowship recipient for 2015 is Effie Albitz (Chemistry ’17) who will spend summer 2015 in the laboratory of Dr. Timothy Clark investigating new strategies to synthesize ambiphilic phosphine boronate esters by C-H borylation reactions. Phosphine boronates have a Lewis basic phosphine and a Lewis acidic boron, resulting in a complimentary system to activate small molecules toward reactivity. One long-term application is in the reduction of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, to methanol, which would be of importance to the use of methanol as a fuel.

Thank you to alumni and friends of the department who gave generous donations to the Alumni Summer Research Fellowship fund, whether or not you were able to attend this past summer! We intend to hold the alumni reunion and fundraiser biennially and our next event will be in the summer of 2016. When we have figured out the exact dates, we will let you know. We hope to see as many of you who can make it next summer. (You’ll also be able to meet the 2016 fellowship recipient in person!) Our ability to offer the fellowship each year depends on the generous support of our terrific alumni and friends of the department. In this ongoing effort, we are presently fundraising to support one or more students for summer 2016. If you are able to make a contribution to help fund a summer research fellowship in the department, please click on the following link and make your donation now. We are grateful for your support!

Donate now!

Congratulations Jevaughn Davis (JD) and Daniela Silva.

Their poster presented at the American Society for Biochemistry and
Molecular Biology (ASBMB) Annual meeting in Boston last week was selected
as the best Thematic Poster in the “What’s New in Membrane Transport
Proteins”. JD and Daniela presented their work “Binding Determinate of
Sodium Hydrogen Exchanger 1 for Calcineurin Homologous Protein” which was
selected by the programming committee for their work, impact and
outstanding research.

The two will share a $300 cash award from the ASBMB recognizing their

BRIDGES Program Update

Last summer we had 2 students accepted into the Bridges program: Ms. Jacque Jones and Ms. Alyssa Rodriguez. Ms. Jones worked in the lab of Dr. Jeremy Thorner at UC Berkeley for the summer. The Thorner Lab studies transmembrane and intracellular transduction mechanisms. Ms. Rodriguez worked in Dr. Jim Stiver’s lab at Johns Hopkins University alongside former Bridges and USD Alumnus Shannen Cravens, and recently presented her work on nucleic acids at the American Chemical Society in Denver, CO. Both students had a great experience, and are using this experience to help inform their post-graduate planning.

NSF Awards

This year, alumna Cassandra Reese (BA 2014) and current senior Bette Webster (BA 2015) were among the few who were awarded the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship which recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based Master's and doctoral degrees.
Cassandra is currently a graduate student at the University of Southern Mississippi in the Department of Polymer Chemistry and High Performance Materials and Bette is intending to pursue her Ph.D. at Stanford beginning in the fall of 2015.

DOE Awards

This year, alumnus Dayn Sommer (BA 2012) was awarded a DOE SCGSR fellowship. The Department of Energy’s Science Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) program provides supplemental awards to outstanding U.S. graduate students to pursue part of their graduate thesis research at a DOE laboratory. The research opportunity is expected to advance the graduate students’ overall doctoral thesis while providing access to the expertise, resources, and capabilities available at the DOE laboratories. This year, alumnus Dayn Sommer (BA 2012) was awarded a DOE SCGSR fellowship. The fellowship will allow Dayn to work at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in Dr. Etsuko Fujita’s laboratory for 9 months.


Alumni News

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Interviews with Alum


Jessica Merrigan '00 (she earned her JD and is now a partner at Lathrop & Gage, LLP and her practice focuses on environmental law;

1. Can you provide an outline of events and timeline of your life and career since graduation from USD and leading up to where you arenow? Feel free to include personal and professional details, but we leave that up to you.

After graduating from USD in 2000 I attended law school at Washington University School of Law in St. Louis. I chose Washington University in part because of its Interdisciplinary Environmental Law Clinic. The Interdisciplinary Environmental Law Clinic included law students as well and undergraduates focused in science or health studies and allowed me to see how my science background could be used in an environmental law career. After graduating from Washington University in 2003 I joined Lathrop & Gage in Kansas City in their environmental law group. I became partner in January 2011 and just started my third year as the co-chair of the environmental department. Throughout my career at Lathrop I have worked with clients on a wide variety of environmental matters – partnering with legal and science experts of my clients and their outside consultants.

2. How did your USD education prepare you for success in your career?

USD provided me with a challenging education that prepared me for the demands of law school. And the liberal arts focus gave me a strong background in writing – a skill I have learned is not universal among scientists! I think the study of chemistry gives you a very strong understanding of the importance of process and analysis, and that really translates well in helping clients understand complex requirements and assessments.

3. When/how did you decide on your career?

I actually decided on a career environmental law as a junior at USD. I really enjoyed my science classes and my environmental studies classes and I was very interested in the interaction between science and policy. I thought environmental law would be a great way to focus on both the science and policy.

4. Can you describe a typical day in your professional life?

There is just no such thing as typical!! There are some days where I may spend almost all my day on conference calls – I work on projects from coast to coast and that includes coordinating with attorneys, consultants and companies from all over the country. Many days I am at a client’s facility – anything from a manufacturing company, to a landfill, to a river dredging operation – and anything in between. It helps to see the operations and understand the challenges my clients face as I work with them on their environmental management. I meet often with state and federal regulators to work on permits, cleanup plans and agreements. I keep a suit in my office and steel-toed boots in the trunk of my car. You just never know!

5. What stands out for you about your time as a student at USD that prepared you the most for your career/present position?

Probably labs! We did intense projects that required careful planning, monitoring and documentation. We worked in teams and, in the upper level labs, wrote full reports. And we often had to focus on our lengthy lab projects while looking out the window at people having way more relaxing or fun afternoons. That’s pretty much every skill I use for my day to day work J

6. What advice to you have for current USD student considering a similar career path?

Well to be honest, the first thing I tell any student considering law school is to be careful about debt. Seven years of higher education is a great investment – to a point! I was lucky enough to receive scholarships that helped me with my undergraduate and law school tuition and I think it is important to think carefully about the level of debt you take on when considering law schools. A high level of debt can have a negative effect on your career flexibility which interferes with my second piece of advice – follow what interests you most! We spend a lot of time at our jobs and I think it is critical that you be constantly challenged and fascinated. My career has done that for me and I think it is an essential component for success.

7.What do you value the most about your USD education?

USD gave me a great education by and among people passionate for their field. That is a tremendously important thing to show to students.


David Dorman ’79 at Athabasca Glacier

1. Can you provide an outline of events and timeline of your life and career since graduation from USD and leading up to where you arenow? In hindsight my career path was rather circuitous!  I entered USD in 1975 as a pre-vet student majoring in biology.  During my junior year I was ‘strongly encouraged’ by Dr. Traylor to switch my major to chemistry.  Fortunately, despite the late switch I was able to graduate ‘on time’ from USD in’79.  I immediately went on to study physical organic chemistry in the laboratory of Dr. Stanley Cristol at the University of Colorado-Boulder.  I enjoyed my graduate education and teaching undergraduates but I kept reconsidering whether I should pursue a career in veterinary medicine.  After three years in Colorado’s Ph.D. program, and after completing some additional undergraduate prerequisite courses, I left the University of Colorado to attend veterinary school at Colorado State University.  While I was a veterinary student I worked in several research laboratories.  Two of these projects centered on cardiovascular pharmacology and Mycobacterium leprae biochemistry.  When I graduated (’86) I imitated James Herriot by joining a small (2 DVMs) mixed animal practice in Walla Walla, WA.  Our clinic mostly treated dogs, cats, horses, and dairy cattle.  As much as I enjoyed my rural veterinary practice’s clients (and their animals), it didn’t feel like I found my long-term professional ‘home’.  I missed research and after some thought (helped along by spending a month laying cement) - I applied to and joined the University of Illinois-Champaign’s combined residency and Ph.D. program in veterinary toxicology.  The residency program included manning a 24/7 animal poison control center and dealing with all types of emergency calls involving animal poisonings.  I was heavily involved in training staff and veterinarians performing this clinical activity.  My research also allowed me to blend biology, chemistry, and veterinary medicine.  I finally found my professional home!  I finished that program in 1990 and went on to complete a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in toxicology at the Chemical Industry Institute of Toxicology (CIIT).  CIIT was a not-for-profit research institute that was created to examine toxicological problems that were broadly shared by the chemical industry.  Ultimately, I was responsible for the institute’s neurotoxicology program and after a series of promotions was named director of CIIT’s biological sciences division.  I left CIIT in 2007 to join the College of Veterinary Medicine at North Carolina State University as an associate dean for research and graduate studies.  I remain at NCSU as a professor of toxicology.  

2. When/how did you decide on your career?  This answer depends in large part on when this question was asked.  When I was in elementary school my dream was to become a veterinarian.  While at USD my plan shifted to pursuing a career in chemistry.  Along the way, my career path went full circle back to veterinary medicine. The decision to pursue a career in toxicology came shortly after graduating from veterinary school.  I chose this field because it was a great fit for someone who enjoyed chemistry. 

3. How did your USD education prepare you for success in your career?  The biology and chemistry faculty at USD were wonderful.  They managed to be critical – always pushing me to improve while staying supportive.  Dr. Traylor was a master at this and she influenced me in many positive ways.  I was also very fortunate to have worked with Dr. Patricia Shaffer on a research project that eventually led to my first publication as a co-author.  Except for one year, I’ve been in the lab ever since.  I’ve also grown to increasingly appreciate the liberal arts side of my education with each passing year.  I feel very fortunate to have graduated from USD. 

4. Can you describe a typical day in your professional life?  My sons tell me all I do is sit in my office all day and work at my computer.  They’re likely right.  My perspective is that my workday is divided between teaching, research, and service.  I teach veterinary toxicology, veterinary ethics, and a ‘freshman’ undergraduate biology course.  I also consult on clinical toxicology cases seen at the veterinary school.  I lead a small research laboratory so I stay busy mentoring students and staff, writing grants, and preparing research publications and presentations.  My research has focused on environmental and occupational hazards of exposure to a range of agents including manganese, methanol, hydrogen sulfide, and Middle East sand dust.  More recently we have been investigating olfaction and cognition in dogs, especially dogs used by the US Marine Corps for the detection of improvised explosive devices.  I serve on a variety of federal advisory groups and have participated in a number of National Research Council projects.  These activities often involves committee work and report writing.  My NRC activities have included providing testimony to the US House of Representative’s Energy and Commerce Committee, Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology's Subcommittee on Oversight and Subcommittee on Environment.  I NEVER would have imagined doing this when I was an undergraduate or working as a veterinarian in Walla Walla!  I’ve been lucky.

5. What stands out for you about your time as a student at USD that prepared you the most for your career/present position?  The classes offered at USD were rigorous so I was academically well prepared for graduate and veterinary school.  Having the opportunity to perform undergraduate research started my whole career rolling.  My time at USD gave me a love for biology, chemistry, and research that has remained to this day. I’ve tried to instill this passion in students that have worked in my lab.  I try to emulate my USD faculty when interacting with students that I encounter.

6. What advice do you have for current USD students considering a similar career path?  Seek out mentors who will also be your advocate.  Your USD professors are a great starting point!  If you’re contemplating a research career then try to find a research project and mentor while you’re completing your undergraduate degree.  The research topic you work on doesn’t matter as much as gaining that experience.  I’ve served on graduate and veterinary school admissions committees and the following advice builds on these roles.  Grades and participation in extracurricular activities do matter; honestly they do – so always try to do your best work.  Be prepared to work hard.  I always tell students: “if it were easy, kindergarteners would do it.” Finally, when you have the chance to build a lab or organization – hire people that are smarter and more talented than you are.  This has served me well. 

7. What do you value the most about your USD education?  I benefited tremendously from the small class sizes and the ability to interact and get to know faculty.  My undergraduate mentors, Drs. Burnett, Shaffer, Traylor, were enormously influential and each taught me important life lessons.  I also had a lot of fun learning and applying my scientific knowledge.  I can safely say that being a USD graduate set my career in motion.


John Butler ‘05

1. Can you provide an outline of events and timeline of your life and career since graduation from USD and leading up to where you arenow?

During my senior year at USD I applied to several graduate schools with the aim of obtaining a PhD in organic chemistry. I chose to go to UT Southwestern in Dallas, TX. While Dallas was quite an adjustment from San Diego, my then girlfriend, now wife, Rosie and I grew fond of the city. I joined the Ready Lab and after working on several methodology projects I started working on a natural product total synthesis at the end of my second year. I spent the remaining 4½ years of my PhD working on the completion of this molecule, an experience that not only made me an expert in organic synthesis but also taught me a lot about perseverance and how to be a scientist. While in graduate school the pharmaceutical industry changed significantly. This brought a lot of uncertainty to my planned career path because of the difficulty many people I knew were having finding positions. I started a Postdoc at Caltech in Pasadena in 2012 where my research again focused on organic synthesis. While toiling in the lab I also took time to explore alternative career options and after a lot of consideration decided to pursue my initial goal of working in drug discovery. During this time in Pasadena my son, Grant, was born and while a Postdoc normally has quite a demanding schedule I was fortunate to have a very understanding advisor and wife who helped me to balance my lab work with the work of starting a family. After a busy job search during the fall of 2013 I decided to join the medicinal chemistry team at Amgen in Cambridge, MA. I recently completed my first year at Amgen and have found it very rewarding. I am working with a large team of scientists to try and develop therapeutics for pain. The work is challenging and requires many hats as we try to understand the biology of our project along with the pharmacological data obtained from our molecules so that we can design better compounds. I really enjoy getting to collaborate often to solve problems and I regularly get a thrill out of making a molecule in the lab that has never been made before.

2. How did your USD education prepare you for success in your career?

The mentors that I had at USD were instrumental in my success because they helped me to find opportunities outside of the classroom that prepared me for my career. Through my advisor Dr. Tahmassebi, I was able to get a summer position at a local startup and an internship at the Salk Institute. I was also able to gain valuable experience doing research at USD with Dr. Kua and Dr. Tahmassebi. While my science courses gave me an excellent foundation, looking back this breadth of research experience was really fantastic and is something that I think is unique to USD.


3. When/how did you decide on your career?

At USD I was fortunate to be able to participate in the vibrant chemistry community of San Diego and was able to attend many conferences and seminars. Through these experiences, and the research I was doing in the Tahmassebi lab, I developed a fascination with the synthesis of complex molecules. I was also amazed at the power of chemical synthesis to create medicines that could improve and change the lives of others. I thought I would find that rewarding and knew I wanted to be a part of drug discovery any way I could. This drove me to go to grad school and eventually pursue a postdoc. During this training I learned more about the many career possibilities available to chemists and thought that I would enjoy a career in medicinal chemistry ­– so far it’s working out!

4. Can you describe a typical day in your professional life?

A typical day at work for me involves balancing time with all aspects of a cycle that is common in medicinal chemistry: analysis of data from in vitro or in vivo assays; design of new compounds based on the data; figuring out viable routes to new compounds; and finally, working in the lab to synthesize new molecules. Also, because all of this is done within a larger team of chemists and other scientists, we have to meet occasionally to discuss data and compounds to target for synthesis. Every day is different because we always get new data from other scientists and the initial routes that we design to make new compounds don’t always work so we have to do significant experimentation.

5. What stands out for you about your time as a student at USD that prepared you the most for your career/present position?

I learned many invaluable things at USD that have helped me as a scientist but I would say the most important thing was the chance to begin to learn how to think and work independently in the laboratory. This sounds pretty simple but has been crucial to every stage of my career. I can point to experiences in the Kua and Tahmassebi labs and independent projects in upper division biochem (Plesniak) and advanced organic lab (Iovine) as being instrumental.


6. What advice do you have for current USD students considering a similar career path?

I would try to get as much experience working in an industrial or academic lab to see if doing lab work every day is something you enjoy. You must be passionate about a career in science if you are to be successful because research can be grueling with successes at times few and far between. Additionally, the pharmaceutical industry has become a challenging and at times volatile sector to work in. It can be competitive and depending on the level you would like to be at you may need many years of training before actually starting your career. If you are successful in scientific research you will be rewarded with training that provides many possibilities in alternative careers not just in a single industry or academic post.

7. What do you value the most about your USD education?

I really value the diversity of experiences that I was able to have while at USD. The courses that I was able to take as a chem major along with the great environment created by the department and the chemistry club really made it easy to see science from many angles. I was able to be involved with a lot of outreach to the community as well as go to seminars that were way over my head. I think all of this exposure to science gave me confidence when going into unknown territory in my own career. I also know that without the support of the fantastic mentors that I had at USD I wouldn’t have been able to do things like study abroad or the summer internships that I had. These opportunities outside of the classroom were life changing and fantastic for my career.

If anyone has questions about graduate school or a career in drug discovery feel free to contact me at


brenda_clementeBrenda Star Clemente

1. Can you provide an outline of events and timeline of your life and career since graduation from USD and leading up to where you are now? Feel free to include personal and professional details, but we leave that up to you.

During my USD education I had the opportunity to acquire a paid internship at Pharmatek for 2 years; I gained this internship with connections from USD professors. My experience in the lab during the summer as freshmen and later on as a sophomore really helped me acquire that internship.  Upon graduation I was hired as a full time employee at Pharmatek. A few months later the company was not doing to well and about half of the company was laid off. Despite the bad situation, I was able to obtain a new job at Vical Incorporated, where I have been working ever since. During this time I got married, bought a home and have been promoted several times at my company. I have been an integral part of clinical trials and also been a part of Phase 3 development in drugs.

2. How did your USD education prepare you for success in your career?

From the summer of my freshmen year until the day I graduated the lab experience I obtained really helped me in acquiring my internship and later my first full time job in the biotech industry.  The small teacher to student ratios allowed me as a student to learn so much.

3. When/how did you decide on your career?

I decided on my career through my lab experience. I went into USD thinking I was going to become a Pharmacist. However, 2 years of being in the lab and being exposed to research I really began to love being in the lab and my internship at Pharmatek really heightened my love for developing new formulations and drugs that would one day make it in to the clinic and into humans. I still remained fascinated a lot science and new drug discovery but instead of being on the end point I became the one who would develop the formulations.

4. Can you describe a typical day in your professional life?

On a typical day I do a lot of multi-tasking. I optimize formulations for stability, write reports, am involved in meetings, and also participate in clinical trial act ivies.

5. What stands out for you about your time as a student at USD that prepared you the most for your career/present position?

The most important aspect of USD was the lab experience that I gained and the hands on ability that it was able to provide for me.

6. What advice to you have for current USD student considering a similar career path?

I think the most important thing is to love what you do and find out what the is, and pursue it with a passion.


Faculty Research Programs

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Benz Group

 The Benz group had a number of good things happen this past year!  We published a paper on our studies of nanoporous ZIF-8 films in the Journal of Physical Chemistry C, and contributed to 2 other collaborative publications in Analytical Chemistry and Applied Materials and Interfaces.  We also just returned from the Denver ACS conference, where Amber Mosier, Hanna Larson, and Bette Webster did a fantastic job presenting their work in the Division of Colloid and Surface Chemistry.  Dr. Fangyuan Tian, our postdoctoral researcher, recently accepted a position at the California State University, Long Beach, where she will begin a tenure-track position in the fall.  Elizabeth Webster was awarded a Beckman Scholarship to continue her work on nanoporous films in catalysis, and she also just got word that she was awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship to pursue a Ph.D. In the fall.  Alumni Aileen Park received word that she was accepted to medical school at Creighton University, and alumni Andrew Cerro accepted a position at Drug Delivery Experts.  Amber Mosier has been accepted to graduate school to pursue a teaching credential and a masters degree in chemistry, which she plans to use to become a (fantastic) high school teacher.  Hanna Larson just got word of acceptance to UCSF's global health program next year.  Congratulations all around on these amazing achievements!!!   We are looking forward to another great year as we begin to gear up for the summer.

From left to right:  Lauren Benz, Elizabeth Webster, Amber Mosier, Hanna Larson


Clark Group

The past year in the Clark research group has been very successful. Five papers have been published, all with undergraduate co-authors. A couple of these papers have been a long time coming and have finally been completed. A research grant from the American Chemical Society Petroleum Research Fund was also secured for our new project on phosphine-directed C–H borylation. This past summer (2014) the Clark lab was very full. During that summer there were 7 undergraduate students, a high school teacher, a high school student, and a post-doctoral research associate. The result of all this activity was a lively and exuberant environment for undergraduate research. This year, five of the students will graduate from USD, and four new students have joined the group.

Some specific recent accomplishments by Clark research group members:

  • Nicholas Huynh and Alexa McGee were awarded USD SURE (Summer Undergraduate Research Experience) fellowship during the summer of 2014.
  • Carl Ferber was awarded a Hayes Summer research fellowship during the summer of 2014.
  • Marissa Ringgold has started graduate school at the University of Rutgers.
  • Wendy Guan and David Peters have been accepted to a number of graduate programs and are currently visiting them to decide where to accept.
  • Cameron Moore (undergraduate), Casey Medina (undergraduate), Peter Cannamela (undergraduate), Dr. Andrew Roering (post-doc), and Melissa McIntosh (previous MS student) are co-authors on a paper published in Organic Letters ( 2014, 16, 6056-6059).
  • Timothy Ramseyer (undergraduate) and Kristina Crawford (technician) are co-authors on a paper published in Angewandte Chemie International Edition ( 2014, 53, 7589-7593).
  • Wendy Guan (undergraduate), Alicia Michael (undergraduate), Liza Koren-Selfridge (undergraduate), and John Scott (undergraduate) are co-authors on a manuscript published in the Journal of Organic Chemistry ( 2014, 79, 7199-7204).
  • Lillian Hale (undergraduate and technician), Kathryn McGarry (post-doc), and Marissa Ringgold (undergraduate) are co-authors on a paper published in Organometallics ( 2015, 34, 51-55).
  • Lillian Hale (undergraduate and technician), David Emmerson (high school teacher), Emma Ling (high school student), Andrew Roering (post-doc), and Marissa Ringgold (undergraduate) are co-authors on a manuscript in press in Organic Chemistry Frontiers.
  • Dr. Andrew Roering, past post-doc in the Clark group has started a tenure-track faculty position at SUNY Cortland…Congratulations Andy!
  • Alexa McGee, Alexi Duenas, and Kathryn McGarry gave poster presentations at the Fall 2014 ACS National Meeting in San Francisco, CA.

Group picture from the spring 2014:



The De Haan group summer 2014 research crew,  L to R:  Mike Symons (’14), Natalie Jinemez (’16), Praveen de_haan_groupWickremasinghe (’17), Taylor Kress (’15), Michelle Powelson (’14), Alexia DeLoera (’18), Dr. De Haan, Franco Faucher (Mater Dei H.S.), Bethany Morrow (’17), Dr. Melanie Zauscher (postdoctoral researcher).

The De Haan group studies reactions that occur in clouds and fog droplets.  These reactions can start with very volatile compounds, but quickly produce large macromolecules that don’t evaporate.  Instead, they get stuck in aerosol particles that float around all day after the clouds and fog have “burned off.”  These aerosol particles are harmful to breathe.  Some of the cloud reactions also produce light-absorbing organic molecules known as “brown carbon.”  Brown carbon particles absorb light and heat up the planet, and so eliminating brown particles could provide an additional way to limit climate change. 

Since light-absorbing organic molecules are often bleached by the sun, Praveen Wickremasinghe and Natalie Jimenez have been testing the ability of cloud reactions to form brown carbon in the presence of oxidants and sunlight – and in more reproducible, artificial sunlight using a biology department plant growth chamber located in the greenhouse on the roof of the science center.  Taylor Kress and Franco Faucher have been analyzing the reaction products by liquid chromatography / electrospray ionization / mass spectrometry, and interpreting these results using fragmentation patterns.  Michelle Powelson studied the water uptake of aerosol particles dried from simulated cloud droplets, to see what happens when such particles re-enter a cloud.  Bethany Morrow and Alyssa Rodriguez (not pictured) used NMR to measure the reaction kinetics of aldehyde – amine reactions to see if additional, volatile aldehydes (which would normally evaporate from a cloud droplet) can get involved.  Alexia DeLoera used LCMS to analyze ancient pottery extracts for traces of cacao and hot peppers.  The pottery, from USD’s May Collection, was extracted by Paula Marie Cepeda and Don Millar in a continuing, joint project with the anthropology department.

In March, Alyssa, Taylor, and Mike travelled with Dr. Zauscher and Dr. De Haan to Denver, CO.  All five presented their research at the spring 2015 meeting of the American Chemical Society. 

Iovine Group

Writing the Spin update each April has become a nice way to reflect.  I enjoy going back through my notes and communications to see where everyone has ended-up or how our research program is fairing.  First, and most importantly, students continue to enrich the lab and make contributions to our program.  Our main focus is developing new polymers and synthetic methodology surrounding biomedically relevant materials including polysaccharide-based polymerics.

The group has published a several papers recently and I list those below.  Undergraduate student coauthors are denoted with an asterisk.

Spring of 2014 was a busy time.  Two long-time Iovine group members graduated, McKenzie Tolan and Cassandra Reese.  Following graduation, McKenzie did a surgical internship at UC Davis while Cassandra began a Ph.D. program at University of Southern Mississippi School for Polymers and High Performance Materials.  Cassandra and McKenzie received Departmental honors and were coauthors on our 2014 Biomacromolecules paper.  Best of luck to both of you!

Dr. Lisa Ryno, a postdoc in the Iovine lab, began her independent academic career at Oberlin College in September 2014.  Lisa made deep contributions to the group and published 2 first author papers during her time at USD.  Lisa’s research group at Oberlin is getting up and running; they are focused on using chemical biology tools and techniques to probe questions related to biofilm formation and composition.  Best of luck Lisa!

Here were the students from summer 2014:  Jason Nettleton (’15), Josh Enem, Allie Linehan (’15), Arman Siddiqui (’16), and Danny Arias (’16).  Jason and Josh traveled extensively as part of a NSF REU experience while Danny, Allie, Arman, and Arijit attended the Spring 2015 ACS Meeting in Denver.  We are proud of Allie Linehan who won the best paper award at the undergraduate research in polymer chemistry symposium.  Great job everyone! 

Dr. Arijit Sengupta joined the group as a postdoctoral researcher in June 2014.  Arijit obtained his Ph.D. from the City University of New York and comes to us more recently from NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering.  Arijit has already published a collaborative paper with UCSD and will submit a first author paper to Langmuir in early May 2015. 

As always, I am eager to hear from Iovine group alumni; so many of you are doing great things.  Please email, call, or find us on twitter (@peteriovine).

Iovine Group Recently Published Papers

Naleway, Steven E.; Yu, Christopher F.; Porter, Michael M.; Sengupta, Arijit; Iovine, Peter M.; Meyers, Marc A.; McKittrick, Joanna.  “Bioinspired Composites from Freeze Casting with Clathrate Hydrates”  Materials & Design2015, 71, 62-67.

Accurso, Adrian A.; Delaney, Mac; O’Brien*, Jeff; Hyonny, Kim; Iovine, Peter M.; Diaz, David; Finn, M. G.  “Improved Metal-Adhesive Polymers from Cu(I)-Catalyzed Azide-Alkyne Cycloaddition”  Chem. Eur. J. 2014, 20, 1-11.

Ryno, Lisa M.; Reese*, Cassandra; Tolan*, McKenzie; O’Brien*, Jeffrey; Short*, Gabriel; Sorriano*, Gerardo; Nettleton*, Jason; Fulton*, Kayleen; Iovine, Peter M.  “Amphiphilic Graft Copolymers from End-Functionalized Starches:  Synthesis, Characterization, Thin Film Preparation, and Small Molecule Loading”  Biomacromolecules 2014, 15, 2944-2951. 

Ryno, Lisa M.; Levine*, Yael; Iovine, Peter M.  “Synthesis, Characterization, and Comparative Analysis of Amylose-Guest Complexes Prepared by Microwave Irradiation”  Carbohydrate Research, 2014, 383, 82-88.

Kua Group

After helping start up a new liberal arts college in Singapore, Dr. Kua is restarting his research group at USD. This semester, Russ Adwan ('16) is extending the free energy map of formaldehyde oligomerization work to acidic and basic conditions. Previously the thermodynamic and kinetic free energy map covered C1-C4 species under neutral (pH 7) conditions. This work was published in the Journal of Physical Chemistry late in 2013 with contributions from Chris Lee ('12), Joseph Avila ('14) and a high school teacher, Bill Smith. Alexandra Leonidova ('18) is extending the pH 7 work to larger oligomers and is working on calculating the energies of the C5 species. In collaboration with Dr. De Haan's group, Alyssa Rodriguez ('15) did the bulk of the work, both the computational and experimental, studying the co-oligomerization of formaldehyde and ammonia. Dr. Kua gave a talk at the San Francisco ACS national meeting in Aug 2014 on his work, and the manuscript was published in the Journal of Physical Chemistry early in 2015. Lily Marucci ('13), a math major, was also a contributor to this project. Dr. Kua's personal research project is to devise a group additivity scheme to quickly generate solution free energies of polar organic molecules in water; this project is still in its preliminary stages and he may turn some students loose on it this coming summer!




The Provost Team has been an exciting and busy place.  This summer students worked on a range of projects from real time PCR of cancer related genes to developing protein-protein interactions to food science experiments!  This year between summer and the school year, fifteen students worked in the lab.  Nine students presented their work at the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) meeting in Boston this past April.  We had a great time and more than a few of the students experienced their first snow!  This summer Dan Hasle received a research award from the ASBMB supporting his work.  The ASBMB accepted Wayne Taylor Cottle and Lea Keifer into the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Honor Society.  Jevaughn Davis and Daniela Silva shared a $300 award for their poster presentation at the meeting.  Together our crew is working to look at metabolism of migrating birds (with Dr. Hugh Ellis in Biology), the role of proton transporters in non-small cell lung cancer, protein kinase regulation of the sodium hydrogen exchanger, interactions of malate dehydrogenase and citrate synthase, and developing a peptide derived vaccine against hookworm. 

I am sad and happy to have a number of outstanding student researchers graduating this year.  I am particularly proud of each of them; each has made life fun and unique here in San Diego.  Lea Kiefer is planning to go to Yale University for graduate school, Emily Fray has accepted a graduate appointment at Johns Hopkins, Jevaughn Davis was accepted into several schools and is going to New York Medical School for an MD/PhD.  Michelle Tran has found a nice position in industry.  Valerie Thorngren, Lily Kha and Ken Pulmones are also graduating after doing a fantastic job and will be looking for positions soon.  Andrea Zammit has been accepted to graduate school at USD where she will get her masters in education.

I am very impressed with our USD students in all of our courses.  This year teaching The Biochemistry of Cancer has been particularly fun watching our students dig deep into the literature and learn fascinating biochemistry.  Together with Dr. Margaret Daley, we have developed the biochemistry laboratory into a unique and powerful, research experience where students learn the structure and function of proteins, conduct site-directed mutagenesis and design experiments to research their hypothesis on a protein.  With the newly designed biochemistry major we look forward to teaching a second semester of biochemistry lecture as well as a new and unique molecular biology techniques course.  I hope to get our textbook "The Science of Cooking" fully finished and to our publisher Wiley early July.  We have an ISBN for the book so it is starting to feel very real.  This summer I will be helping give a leadership workshop with Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL), attend a meeting on biochemistry education and go to the business meeting for Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR); this is my third term as a CUR chemistry division councilor.  Oh, the summer students designed this year's lab shirt.  They somehow picked up on my Mt Dew addiction.

Schellinger Group


The Schellinger research group is a new addition to the department. Our group is is setting-up of a new laboratory with the acquisition of an automated microwave-assisted peptide synthesizer, actively collaborating with other groups and most importantly, we already have highly-motivated undergraduate students doing research.

Students in the group, Francisco Hidalgo (right, ‘15) and Joel Arias (left, ‘16) have presented their research work at conferences such as 2015 ACS Southern California Undergraduate Research Conference at UCSD and 2015 Creative Collaborations at USD.  The project they presented is focused on the synthesis of novel hybrid biomaterials that contain both peptides and starch in the same molecule. This work is in collaboration with Professor Peter Iovine’s group. We anticipate that these hybrid biomaterials will have potential biomedical applications.

Four more undergraduate students, Callie Cuff (’18), Ella Giles (’16), Micaella Jorge (’17) and Alisson Magsumbol (’17) have joined the group this spring semester. Ella Giles was one of the recipients of the 2015 Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) award and we are very excited to do more research this coming summer.  She will be investigating reversible addition fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization of various peptide monomers using microwave irradiation to efficiently prepare peptide-based polymers.


Recent Faculty Publications - *undergraduate co-authors

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Recent Publications from the Department

J. Kua, A. A. Rodriguez,* L. Marucci, M. M. Galloway,# D. O. De Haan,"Free energy map for the co-oligomerization of formaldehyde and ammonia," J. Phys. Chem. A  (in press, 2015).

Tan, J.-K. Y.; Choi, J. L.; Wei, H.; Schellinger, J. G.; Pun, S. H., Reducible, dibromomaleimide-linked polymers for gene delivery. Biomater. Sci., 2015,3, 112-120.

Naleway, Steven E.; Yu, Christopher F.; Porter, Michael M.; Sengupta, Arijit; Iovine, Peter M.; Meyers, Marc A.; McKittrick, Joanna. “Bioinspired Composites from Freeze Casting with Clathrate Hydrates” Materials & Design. 2015, 71, 62-67.

“High Temperature Mass Detection Using a Carbon Nanotube Bilayer Modified Quartz Crystal Microbalance as a GC Detector,” M. Benz, L. Benz, S. V. Patel, Analytical Chemistry, 87(5), 2779, (2015).

“Monitoring N3 dye adsorption and desorption on TiO2 surfaces: A combined QCM-D and XPS study,” H.K. Wayment-Steele,* L.E. Johnson, F. Tian, M.C. Dixon, L. Benz, and M.S. Johal, Applied Materials & Interfaces, 6(12), 9093, (2014).

“Surface and stability characterization of a nanoporous ZIF-8 thin film,” F. Tian, A. M. Cerro,* A. M. Mosier,* H. K. Wayment-Steele,* R. S. Shine,* A. Park,* E. R. Webster,* L. E. Johnson, M.S. Johal, and L. Benz, J. Phys. Chem. C., 118, 14449, (2014).

Wallert M.A. and Provost J.J. Integrating standard operating procedures and industry notebook standards to evaluate students in laboratory courses. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education 2014. 42(1): 41 – 49.

L. N. Hawkins,# M. J. Baril,* N. Sedehi,* M. M. Galloway,# D. O. De Haan, G. P. Schill, M. A. Tolbert,"Formation of semi-solid, oligomerized aqueous SOA:  cloud and aerosol lab simulations," Environ. Sci. Technol. 48 (4) 2273-2280 (2014) doi: 10.1021/es4049626.

G. P. Schill, D. O. De Haan, M. A. Tolbert, “Heterogeneous ice nucleation on simulated secondary organic aerosol,” Environ. Sci. Technol. 48 (3) 1675-1682 (2014) doi: 10.1021/es4046428 (ACS Editor's Choice).

M. H. Powelson,* B. M. Espelien,* L. N. Hawkins,# M. M. Galloway,# D. O. De Haan, “Brown carbon formation by aqueous-phase aldehyde reactions with amines and ammonium sulfate,” Environ. Sci. Technol. 48 (2) 985-993 (2014) doi: 10.1021/es4038325.

M. M. Galloway,# M. H. Powelson,* N. Sedehi,* S. E. Wood,* K. D. Millage,* J. A. Kononenko,* A. D. Rynaski,* D. O. De Haan, "Secondary organic aerosol formation during evaporation of droplets containing atmospheric aldehydes, amines, and ammonium sulfate," Environ. Sci. Technol. 48 (24) 14417-14425 (2014) doi: 10.1021/es5044479.

Accurso, Adrian A.; Delaney, Mac; O’Brien*, Jeff; Hyonny, Kim; Iovine, Peter M.; Diaz, David; Finn, M. G. “Improved Metal-Adhesive Polymers from Cu(I)-Catalyzed Azide-Alkyne Cycloaddition” Chem. Eur. J. 2014, 20, 1-11.

Ryno, Lisa M.; Reese*, Cassandra; Tolan*, McKenzie; O’Brien*, Jeffrey; Short*, Gabriel; Sorriano*, Gerardo; Nettleton*, Jason; Fulton*, Kayleen; Iovine, Peter M. “Amphiphilic Graft Copolymers from End-Functionalized Starches: Synthesis, Characterization, Thin Film Preparation, and Small Molecule Loading”   Biomacromolecules 2014, 15, 2944-2951.

Ryno, Lisa M.; Levine*, Yael; Iovine, Peter M. “Synthesis, Characterization, and Comparative Analysis of Amylose-Guest Complexes Prepared by Microwave Irradiation” Carbohydrate Research, 2014, 383, 82-88.

Hale, L. V. A.; Emmerson, D. G.; %Ling, E. F.; Roering, A. J.; *Ringgold, M. A.; Clark, T. B. “An ortho-Directed C–H Borylation/Suzuki Coupling Sequence in the Formation of Biphenylbenzylic Amines” Org. Chem. Frontiers. In Press.( DOI: 10.1039/C4QO00348A).

Hale, L. V. A.; McGarry, K. A.; *Ringgold, M. A.; Clark, T. B. “Role of Hemilabile Diamine Ligands in the Amine-Directed C–H Borylation of Arenes” Organometallics 2015, 34, 51–55.

*Moore, C. M.; *Medina, C. R.; *Cannamela, P. C.; McIntosh, M. L.; *Ferber, C. J.; Roering, A. J.; Clark, T. B. “Facile Formation of b-Hydroxyboronate Esters by a Cu-Catalyzed Diboration/Matteson Homologation Sequence” Org. Lett. 2014, 16, 6056–6059.

*Guan, W.; *Michael, A. K.; *Koren-Selfridge, L.; McIntosh, M. L.; *Scott, J. P.; Clark, T. B. “Stereoselective Formation of Trisubstituted Vinyl Boronate Esters by the Acid-Mediated Elimination of a-Hydroxyboronate Esters” J. Org. Chem. 2014, 79, 7199–7204.

Crawford, K. M.; *Ramseyer, T. R.; Daley, C. J. A.; Clark, T. B. “Phosphine-Directed C–H Borylation Reactions: Facile and Selective Access to Phosphine-Substituted Arylboronate Esters” Angew. Chem., Int. Ed. 2014, 53, 7589–7593.