From Fundamental Organic Radical Chemistry to Metal-Free Medical Imaging Agents . . .
Congratulations to Dr. Andrzej Rajca’s research group. They have just come out with a couple key papers on nitrogen-centered radicals. The paper entitled “Synthesis of Unnatural Amino Acids Functionalized with Sterically Shielded Pyrroline Nitroxides” has just appeared in Organic Letters and describes the synthesis of a new family of spin–labeled unnatural amino acid building blocks for peptide incorporation http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/ol502449r ). Another paper entitled, “Synthesis of Aza-m-Xylylene Diradicals with Large Singlet-Triplet Energy Gap and Statistical Analyses of their EPR Spectra” that has just been published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society http://pubs.acs.org/doi/pdf/10.1021/ja508119d
describes the generation of a new type aza-xylyl diradical with a large singlet-triplet energy gap. Included in this study is the development of a new, statistical EPR analysis method for estimating singlet-triplet gaps in samples that are not homogeneous. This is expected to find wide use in the field. These studies are part of a longstanding program in unpaired electron chemistry, in which the Rajca group combines theory and experiment to develop molecules with multiple unpaired spins with great potential for both materials (e.g. http://www.sciencemag.org/content/294/5546/1503.full.html or DOI: 10.1126/science.1065477) and biomedical (contrast agents for medical imaging) applications. Rajca wrote perhaps the seminal review on the former area in Chem Reviews, and that paper has been cited well over 600 times (http://pubs.acs.org/doi/pdf/10.1021/cr00028a002 ).
And a new NSF grant:
Additionally, we would like to congratulate Dr. Rajca’s research group on their new NSF grant cycle for their project entitled, “Nitrogen-Centered Radicals.”
In this project funded by the Chemical Structure, Dynamics & Mechanism B (CSDM B) Program of the NSF Chemistry Division, Dr. Rajca will investigate structure and property relationships of organic molecules and macromolecules that are relevant to the development of novel magnetic and optical technology. The goal of this research is to synthesize and study high-spin nitrogen-centered radicals (aminyls) and chiral helical radical cations. The aminyls with strong through-bond ferromagnetic coupling and with persistence at room temperature are important to the development of lightweight, soft organic magnets. In addition, such organic radicals could benefit the development of metal-free paramagnetic contrast agents for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), agents for paramagnetic relaxation enhancement nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, as well as materials for spintronics. The helical radical cations, which possess an unpaired electron confined to a helix, could facilitate the discovery of new organic magneto-optic materials and devices.
Furthermore Rajca’s team was just awarded a grant from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for a project entitled “Synthesis of Densely Functionalized PEG-Branch-Nitroxide Structures as Organic MRI Contrast Agents.”
Congratulations again on your many accomplishments!
UNL Chemistry Day Helps High Schoolers Explore Science Interests
More than 120 Nebraska high school juniors, seniors, their parents and teachers will converge on campus Oct. 11 for the 14th annual Chemistry Day. The event, sponsored by the Department of Chemistry, will offer hands-on activities, guided tours of research labs, a look at opportunities and exciting careers in the field of chemistry, and a chance to win scholarships to study chemistry at UNL.
This year's event is built around the theme of "The Sweet Side of Chemistry--Candy." The planned lab demonstrations will be geared toward this theme.
A scavenger hunt, Chemistry Quiz Bowl, panel discussion featuring current UNL chemistry undergraduates and roundtable for parents and teachers also are planned. Alumni will be on hand to talk about how a degree in chemistry helped launch their careers. All events will take place inside Hamilton Hall.
High school seniors who attend may win a chemistry major scholarships. The department plans to award several scholarships of up to $1,500 for the 2015-16 academic year. Interested students must have completed a high school chemistry course and have an overall GPA of a B+ or higher. Interested seniors should bring a copy of their high school transcript and a brief reference letter to be eligible for consideration.
For complete event details, visit http://chemistry.unl.edu or contact Peg Bergmeyer at 402-472-3514 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Congratulations to Seth Blackwell and Jake Luther for being given the Department of Chemistry’s Citation for Excellence in Teaching Chemistry award. Their contributions to our teaching mission in General Chemistry are truly remarkable. Seth Blackwell earned his award for his outstanding efforts in recitation and Jake Luther for his hard work in the lab. Their passion and dedication to the educational enterprise and the welfare of our students is invaluable to the mission of our program. Thank you for a job well done!
- Avery Hall Time Capsule Contents Finally Revealed!
This Time Capsule was created in 1916 and then sealed into the Avery Hall (former chemistry building) Date Stone after the building’s foundation was complete. It was most likely assembled by Professor Mary Fossler. It included the following items that are numbered according to their proximity to the top.
Item #; Description; Inferred Reason for Inclusion
1; Lincoln Daily Star; Indication of date
2; Lincoln Daily News; Indication of date
3; Nebraska State Journal; Indication of date
4; Summer School Nebraskan; Indication of date
5; Envelope labeled "Silk dyed with ferric alizarate, Harold John Stockman, June 8, 1916"; Student synthesized chemical (mentored by Mary Fossler)
6; Envelope labeled "A probable new dye, June 8, 1916"; Student synthesized chemical (mentored by Mary Fossler)
7; Envelope labeled "Former University Color, Old Gold"; Student synthesized chemical (mentored by Mary Fossler)
8; Envelope labeled "Colors of Nebraska Section, American Chemical Society, Eosin Pink and Malachite Green"; Student synthesized chemical (mentored by Mary Fossler)
9; Envelope labeled "Colors of the University of Nebraska"; Student synthesized chemical (mentored by Mary Fossler)
10; College of Pharmacy Yearbook 1916; Indication of date; photos of faculty, students, clubs
11; Summer School Nebraskan; Indication of date
12; University of Nebraska Bulletin & General Catalog; Indication of date
13; Chemical Abstracts, May 20, 1916; inside are enrollment in chem 4, final exam chem 3, etc; Indication of date; classroom work in courses taught by Mary Fossler
14; Photo of H. H. Nicholson; Photo former chair
15; Book: In Memoriam about Rachel Lloyd by her brother in law Clement Lloyd with photos inserted of Mary Fossler, Samuel Avery, Iota Sigma Pi members, an envelope with a Chemical Laboratory emboss, a blank envelope; This is the only known copy of this book, which gives details about Dr. Lloyd’s life that cannot be found anywhere else; It has now been digitized by the UNL Archives and can be read at http://unlhistory.unl.edu/legacy/rachellloyd/rachellloyd.html
16; Scroll of Chemical Reactions from Methane to Alcohols; Classroom related
17; Paper wrapped brick by George Borrowman; Student prepared material (MA 1907 mentored by Avery; PhD 1916 mentored by Dales & Barbour; Dept's first PhD)
18; Paper wrapped Sealed tube containing folded paper; Student glasswork skill
19; Green box from Germany filled with cotton surrounding a sealed tube with paper inside; Student glasswork skill
20; Paper wrapped Three small tubes by Saul Arenson; Student prepared chemical (MA 1918 mentored by Dales; PhD 1924 mentored by Brown)
21; Paper wrapped Capped Bottle of "Synthetic Indigo by Schelinger"; Student synthesized chemical (UG mentored by Mary Fossler)
22; Paper wrapped Capped bottle of Alizarin; Student synthesized chemical (mentored by Mary Fossler)
23; Paper wrapped Capped Bottle labeled "Chromic Alizarate"; Student synthesized chemical (mentored by Mary Fossler)
24; Paper wrapped Capped Bottle labeled "Stani Alizarate"; Student synthesized chemical (mentored by Mary Fossler)
25; Paper wrapped Tube labeled "Methaldehyde by Partridge"; Student synthesized chemical (UG)
26; Paper wrapped Sealed tube with paper inside signed "G. E. Lewis"; Student glasswork skill (MA 1913 mentored by Dales & Fossler?)
27; Paper wrapped Sealed tube with paper inside labeled "Theta of Alpha Chi Sigma"; Student glasswork skill
28; Paper wrapped Sealed tube with paper inside signed "Mr. Donald B. Dow"; Student glasswork skill (UG)
29; Paper wrapped Capped Bottle labeled "Ferric Alizarate by H J Stockman"; Student synthesized chemical (mentored by Mary Fossler)
30; Paper wrapped Corked bottle containing another smaller bottle with solid and oil next to piece of paper; Student synthesized chemical
31; Paper wrapped Cornhusker; Indication of date; photos of faculty, students, clubs
32; Paper wrapped Tube labeled "Cerium rare earths by G E Lewis"; Student prepared chemical (MA 1913 mentored by Dales & Fossler)
33; Mimeograph List of Chemistry Faculty; Faculty summary
34; Calling Card of "E. L. Goldsmith, supervisor of construction"; Construction
35; Book: "Organic Chemistry" by Remsen, signed by Mary Fossler; Classroom related: Textbook owned by Mary Fossler
36; Envelope labeled "Hon Board of Regents, State of Nebraska, Lincoln Neb"; University related: Communication from the past
It is not very often that the UNL Department of Chemistry can claim that one of its own has been selected as a National Historic Chemical Landmark by the American Chemical Society, so we are extremely excited to announce that Dr. Rachel Lloyd, UNL faculty from 1887-1895 was awarded this honor. The awards ceremony will be held Oct. 1-2, 2014, at UNL during the Dr. Rachel Lloyd Memorial Conference on Women in Science. This conference is open to the public and highlights many prominent women speakers from academia and the chemical industry. For full details on the conference and the story of Dr. Lloyd please visit http://chem.unl.edu/calendar/RachelLloyd.shtml.
Also to be showcased at the conference will be the Avery Hall cornerstone time capsule which was placed in 1916 during the construction of the old chemistry building. The time capsule may contain a photo of Rachel Holloway Lloyd as well as many other chemistry artifacts. Go to (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toboeLOZJQ0 to see footage of the capsule’s removal.
Our Ovation for August goes out to Lisa Morton, student worker in the Chemistry Department! As her nominators say:
“Lisa is always so cheerful and loves to jump in and have fun with everyone! She is always hard at work but makes time to say hello and just see how everyone is doing. She's very dependable and always full of positive energy! It's great to have her here !:)”
“Lisa is the embodiment of what an Ovation Award recipient should be. She comes to work when she is scheduled, does what needs to be done (often without instruction or supervision) and is more than pleasant to those around her. Lisa will look for things to do when assigned tasks are completed. She accepts doing work that is, at best, boring (like labeling sample vials, filing forms or counting pages of handouts) but is necessary to the functioning of the Chemistry department. She delivers materials from Receiving and handles the attached paper work. She aids students and others in placing orders and resolving problems and mistakes. Recently she has been handling many of the duties of the purchasing department (often alone) while her boss was on break. Beyond her duties to the department, Lisa enjoys decorating for parties or just to brighten the area. Her smile is infecting (in a good way) and her energy is impressive. She deserves an Ovation!”
The OVATION award is the perfect thank you for student employees in the College of Arts & Sciences to recognize their innovative ideas, their consistently outstanding performance, or their service above and beyond the call of duty.
- The Department of Chemistry would like to congratulate Dr. David Hage and his coworkers for being awarded a renewal grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) NIDDK for his proposal titled “Chromatographic Studies of Functional Proteomics.” Dr. Hage is listed as the principal investigator (PI).
Dr. Hage’s team has recently shown that high-performance affinity chromatography (HPAC) can be an effective and powerful method for examining drug interactions with glycated HSA, as is produced during diabetes. In this project, his team will create and employing HPAC assays and columns that contain or examine glycated HSA and exploring the use of HPAC as a tool for personalized medicine and in examining interactions in heterogeneous protein populations or complex biological systems. With their expertise in protein-based chromatography, they hope to gain a greater understanding of how protein function may be altered in diabetics.
Please join the Department of Chemistry for an important colloquium event which is our INAUGURAL NC3 AWARD LECTURE (Nebraska Cluster for Computational Chemistry) with award ceremony this Sept. 19th. The ceremony starts at 3pm followed by the award lecture at 3:30pm. Both events will be held in Hamilton Hall room 112.
The program is as follows:
Opening Remarks by Professor David B. Berkowitz, Chair of the Department of Chemistry, University of Nebraska–Lincoln
NC3 Inaugural Remarks by Vice Chancellor Prem Paul, Vice Chancellor of Research and Economic Development, University of Nebraska–Lincoln
Establishment of the Elmer H. and Ruby M. Cordes Chair In Chemistry
Honoree: Eugene Cordes
Conferred by: Amber Antholz, Assistant Vice President, University of Nebraska Foundation Appointment of Inaugural Cordes Chair In Chemistry
Honoree: Joseph Francisco, Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences
Conferred by: Eugene Cordes
Introduction of Professor Ratner and Award Presentation by Professor Xiao Cheng Zeng, Department of Chemistry, University of Nebraska–Lincoln
Award Lecture: Molecular Mesoscopics: Transport in Molecular Junctions
We would like to invite you to read our second edition of our 2014 UNL Chemistry Department Summer Newsletter with added photo archives at http://chem.unl.edu/alumni/newsletters.shtml.
We are always looking for interesting alumni stories, so feel free to contact us and let us know what you’ve been up to lately. If you have any questions or comments, just let us know. Have a great day!
#UNL24 - Next Wednesday, September 17, be part of the fun and show your Husker school pride by following us on social media for a chance to win prizes and participate in new activities. So before next Wednesday, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, or join us on LinkedIn and stay tuned. Don’t forget to check back on Wednesday for more details. Link to our social media outlets by clicking on their icons on the right side of our webpage http://www.chem.unl.edu. #UNL24
You are invited to participate in the 2014 Women in STEM Workshop! This is the first time an event like this has been organized on UNL's campus, and here's all you need to know to get started:
The2014 Women in STEM Workshop is an event aimed at freshmen girls at UNL. Whether you're a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) major, a person who enjoys STEM topics, or just someone hoping to get some tips on how to succeed in your science classes, this event is for you! The workshop takes place over the course of an afternoon and will feature a variety of speakers and panelists from many departments of UNL and beyond (you can check out the "Event Schedule" tab for more info). The event is free, and lunch will be provided! The event is open to 75 students.
This is a great opportunity to bring your questions about STEM that the UNL welcome wagon never answered, as well as share your previous experiences and future questions about the wide, wide world of STEM studies.
So poke around the site, mark your calendars and get involved! Oh, and feel free to email me at email@example.com with any questions/concerns you may have!
UPDATE: Online registration is now open! http://involved-apps.unl.edu/a/STEM_Workshop/
First come, first serve!
Please join us in congratulating Dr. Xiao Zeng and Dr. Joseph Francisco on a potentially far-reaching piece of collaborative work that has just appeared in JACS and graces the cover of its latest issue:
“Spontaneous Formation of One-Dimensional Hydrogen Gas Hydrate in Carbon Nanotubes”（J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 10661-10668. DOI:10.1021/ja5041539)
Experimentalists will now be looking to verify that hydrogen gas does indeed form stable clathrate-like structures when confined to SWTs. If so, this could serve as non-traditional, but potentially effective, H2-storage mechanism.
This collaboration was also featured in UNL Today. http://news.unl.edu/newsrooms/unltoday/article/francisco-zeng-bai-collaboration-featured-in-chemistry-journal/
Congratulations to you both!!!
- Help us congratulate Dr. Mark Griep and collaborators for their NSF award for their proposal titled “Nebraska--Framing the Chemistry Curriculum,” as part of the newly funded Broadening Participation in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) program.
This project started in the summer of 2013 when the science faculty and deans at Nebraska Indian Community College (NICC; www.thenicc.edu) and Little Priest Tribal College (LPTC; www.lptc.edu) and UNL’s Dr. Griep met over a period of six weeks to develop a program to connect college science instruction to community topics. Their project was one of five selected out of more than 100 applications for funding. Here’s more information on the project: (http://chemweb.unl.edu/griep/?page_id=207). Congrats again!
- Join Us in San Francisco!
If you plan to attend the ACS National Convention in San Francisco, CA, this August, please join us for an Alumni and Friends Welcome Reception at the Thirsty Bear Brewing Company and Spanish Tapas Restaurant from 5:15-7:15 p.m. on Tuesday, August, 12th. You will not find the event listed in the official ACS schedule but it is very official. After a long day of talks at the Convention Center come rest, relax, and reminisce with us and fellow alums.
ThirstyBear Brewing Company is the first and only brewery in San Francisco to brew certified organic beer. ThirstyBear Brewing Company brews CCOF and FDA certified organic beer and produces and serves more barrels of beer in-house than any other brewpub in San Francisco. Plus, the Spanish Tapas Restaurant is one of the first critically acclaimed Spanish tapas restaurants in the Bay area.
The location is ideal, just head 1 block northeast of the Convention Center. The Thirsty Bear Brewing Company and Spanish Tapas Restaurant is located at 661 Howard Street, San Francisco, CA 94105, http://thirstybear.com/contact, (415) 974-0905.
See you there!
P.S. Please RSVP to Kerry Vondrak at firstname.lastname@example.org by August 1st.
- We are proud to announce alumnus Ivan Moreno National Science Foundation Fellowship was featured in UNL TODAY. Ivan Moreno is one of 10 UNL students who have recently received National Science Foundation Fellowships. Moreno is using his award to further his graduate study into solar energy.
Ivan Moreno is packing his bags and heading to sunny California. It makes sense for the UNL alumnus, since he’s starting graduate research on solar energy.
Moreno will begin working under Nathan Lewis, professor of chemistry at California Institute of Technology, this summer, thanks in part to a National Science Foundation Fellowship, which provides a stipend for three years and several unique opportunities.
Xiao Cheng Zeng and Wei Fa at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, US, were so inspired after reading about the graphene Pringles reported last year that they decided to investigate equivalents made from boron and nitrogen. The non-planar B40N40H30 nanoplate, which they identified via an ab initio simulation, is expected to change shape in a dynamic flapping fashion owing to its relatively low activation barrier of racemisation.
The study suggested an aluminium nitride version too. Like their carbon-based cousins, the predominately hexagonal BN and AlN Pringles also contain five seven-membered rings and one five-membered ring, which results in a stable, double concave structure. Both can be viewed as isoelectronic with the C80H30 Pringle.
Since the warped B40N40H30 possesses a narrower electronic HOMO–LUMO gap than that of the planar B39N39H30, it is expected that designing BN-based nanoplates to include non-hexagonal ring defects can be an effective way to modify their electronic properties.
- Every year the Bioanalysis journal recognizes some of the brightest young scientists in the field in its Young Investigator Award. They have just revealed the names of 15 young scientists who have been nominated by their supervisors for a chance to win the 2014 Award. Our own graduate student, Erika Pfaunmiller made the final 15. Check out her published biosketch: http://www.bioanalysis-zone.com/articles/2014-young-investigator-erika-pfaunmiller #UNLdeptofchemistry
- The Chemistry Department would like to congratulate Alumnus John Schiel '04, '09 for receiving the Early Achiever Award from the College of Arts and Sciences. Schiel is currently developing a recombinant IgG1κ monoclonal antibody as a National Reference Material to support the biomanufacturing industry. Results will be published this year in a three-volume book series co-edited by Schiel. While in Lincoln, to accept this prestigious award, Schiel also presented the Alumni Early Achiever Award Lecture at Hamilton Hall as part of the department’s colloquia series and took time for a short interview with the department. Congratulations again for this amazing accomplishment!
Congrats to Profs. Jiantao Guo, Wei Niu, and Qingsheng Li (SBS/Virology) on their new collaborative NIH NIAID R01 Grant:
“Improving the Safety of an Efficacious Live-Attenuated HIV-1 Vaccine through Unnatural Amino Acid-Mediated Suppression of Blank Codon.”
Synopsis: The prevention of HIV-1 infection poses a great challenge to scientists. Up to this point, despite intense efforts, a safe and effective HIV-1 vaccine has remained elusive. The persistent replication and consequent evolution of the attenuated vaccine creates safety concerns. This NIH grant aims to address this safety problem and develop a protective vaccine against HIV-1 in order to stem the worldwide AIDS pandemic. This cross-disciplinary Nebraska team seeks to control HIV-1 replication through an artificial Amber nonsense codon suppression scheme that is precisely regulated by three exogenous components. Control relies on a unique Amber suppressor tRNA that can decode the Amber nonsense codon in the presence of a special aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase capable of charging the suppressor tRNA with an unnatural amino acid. Because none of these three exogenous components is found in normal human metabolism, the virus cannot further replicate and cause disease, once a desirable protection level has been reached.
Initial work that demonstrates proof of principle of this concept was recently published in Angewandte Chemie International Edition : http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/anie.201402092/abstract.
With this grant, the UNL Chemistry/Virology team plans to further develop this technology and to test vaccine candidates generated in this manner in an animal model. In the longer term, this approach may be applicable to the generation of vaccines against other pathogenic viruses, or bacteria, underscoring the potentially far-reaching impact of this research upon biomedical science.
Their research was also highlighted in UNL Today: http://news.unl.edu/newsrooms/unltoday/article/grant-funds-new-approach-to-hiv-vaccine/
· Professor Stephen Morin – Nebraska EPSCOR-FIRST Award for “Dynamic Synthesis of Crystalline Materials for Innovative Methods in Microfabrication.”
· Nebraska Entrepreneurship and Innovation:
Professor Stephen DiMagno successfully “spun-off” a start-up company from fundamental research with one of the very first NSF-i-Corps grants: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x0LJQmfPtWY.
Now that company–Ground Fluor Pharmaceuticals (Kiel Neumann, Associate Director; Alan Green, MD, PhD, JD – CEO and President; Stephen DiMagno-Founder and Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board)-has closed on its first round of private funding. Congrats!
Press release: http://www.gfpharma.com/news.
Congrats to Professor Marilyne Stains on being selected as the 2014 Student Impact Award Winner as the Outstanding New Advisor for a University of Nebraska Student Organization for her work advising the Chem Club!
Joseph S. Francisco to lead the College of Arts and Sciences at the flagship campus at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln.
Senior Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs Ellen Weissinger announced that the University of Nebraska-Lincoln has selected Joseph S. Francisco, former president of the American Chemical Society (ACS: http://www.acs.org/) and member of the National Academy of Sciences, as dean of its College of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Francisco will also serve as a chaired Professor of Chemistry at UNL. The appointment begins July 1, pending approval by the NU Board of Regents
Dr. Weissinger noted that Francisco “brings a combination of scientific achievements and visionary leadership to Lincoln.” Francisco received an NSF Presidential Young Investigator Award, an Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship and a Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Teacher-Scholar Award. He also earned an American Association for the Advancement of Science Mentor Award and a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, which he spent at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology.
Joseph Francisco’s research is in the area of theoretical and experimental physical chemistry with a special interest in atmospheric chemistry. He has over 400 publications and has co-authored the textbook “Chemical Kinetics and Dynamics.” Francisco is a fellow of the American Physical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. From 2006 to 2008, he was president of the National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers (NOBCChE: https://www.nobcche.org/). He received a bachelor’s degree in chemistry at the University of Texas at Austin and a doctorate in chemical physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
- Congratulations to Dr. Eric Dodd’s research group! They recently published an article in Analyst that has been highlighted as a “Hot Article in Analyst.” Their article was titled: “Energy-resolved collision-induced dissociation pathways of model N-linked glycopeptides: implications for capturing glycan connectivity and peptide sequence in a single experiment.”
Congratulations again on this amazing accomplishment!
Please join us in congratulating our own Ivan Moreno, Chem Club President and talented Chemistry major.
Ivan has just been awarded an NSF Predoctoral Fellowship! He plans to pursue his PhD at Caltech.
Ivan, we are all very proud of you. You are an outstanding representative of our program.
We wish you continued success – upward and onward!
The Department of Chemistry regrets to inform you of the passing of a dear friend to the department, Gordon A. Gallup of Lincoln, died on March 26, 2014. He was born March 9, 1927 in St. Louis, Mo. to Merle and Eudora Gallup. He was a WWII Navy veteran. Gordon received his Ph.D. in chemistry from University of Kansas in 1953 and did post-doctoral research at Purdue University. In 1955 he came to UN-L, becoming full professor in 1964. In 1993 he retired from teaching and since then has spent time as a courtesy research professor with the Department of Physics and Astronomy at UN-L.
His research interests over the years include infrared spectroscopy and molecule vibrations, theory of molecular electronic structure, valence bond theory, electron scattering from atoms and molecules, and dissociative electron attachment. He has had over 130 articles published in 10-15 chemistry and physics journals, as well as articles in edited compendia and review books.
Gordon is survived by his wife, Grace (Gay) of Lincoln; daughter, Stephanie (Nels) Quinn, Rowlett, Texas, daughter-in-law, Linda Gallup, Austin, Texas and four grandchildren. He has six step-children, Douglas (Patricia), Craig (Janice) and Martin Druckenmiller, Terry Long, Jane Warne and Joy (Rodger) Baird. He has 11 step grandchildren and nine step great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Georgine and his son, Michael.
UNL has awarded Professor Rebecca Lai as one of the 2014 College Distinguished Teaching Award recipients.
“These faculty have made important contributions to UNL’s teaching community,” said Amy Goodburn, associate vice chancellor. “They inspire their students and their colleagues with their passion and commitment to student learning.”
College Distinguished Teaching Awards are $1,000 awards in recognition of consistent excellence in teaching. Winners of the 2014 College Awards for Distinguished Teaching are:
College of Arts and Sciences: Mark Brittenham, associate professor of mathematics; Sergio Wals, assistant professor of political science; Catherine Johnson, lecturer of modern languages and literatures; Shari Stenberg, associate professor of English; Rebecca Lai, professor of chemistry; Petronela Radu, associate professor of mathematics.
The faculty members will be recognized at Honors Convocation on April 13.
Congratulations Dr. Lai for this amazing achievement!
- We would like to congratulate Dr. Stephen Morin who has just been awarded a Layman Award for his application entitled “Dynamic Nanowire Synthesis and Manipulation Using Fluid Flow Inside Microfluidic Reactors,” with a 1-year funding period. Congratulations again Dr. Morin.
- The Department of Chemistry regrets to announce the passing of a dear friend, former faculty member, colleague, mentor, and advisor to the department, Dr. Robert S Marianelli, Ph.D. Bob was from Columbia, Maryland and died December 22, 2013, at the age of 72 after a struggle with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease).
Bob earned his undergraduate degree in Mathematics at the University of Delaware and his PhD in Chemistry at University of California- Berkley. He completed his degree in three years because he was one of the students that the university pushed through during the Sputnik era. After graduating in 1966, he joined the Chemistry department at the University of Nebraska (UNL). There he taught for 12 years and was granted tenure. Although he enjoyed teaching and research, he said that he had a hard time asking for money to support his research projects.
In 1977 he was presented with an opportunity to take a leave of absence from the university and work for the Energy Research and Development Administration (ERDA) which was about to become the Department of Energy (DOE). Bob felt he could accomplish more by managing science than by performing science. He took the two-year leave of absence and then in 1979 accepted a permanent position with DOE.
Bob worked 20 years with the DOE and during that time he served 8 years as a program manager, a short stint as a branch chief, and 12 years as director of the Chemical Sciences Division. He was especially proud that he helped identify and foster many extremely bright scientists, six of whom went on to earn Nobel Prizes, perhaps the top honor a scientist can receive. The six Nobel Laureates were Yuan Lee, Dick Schrock, Bob Grubbs, Sherwood Rowland, Donald Cram, and Richard Smalley. He had said that he did not care to be in the limelight but only wanted to see things accomplished and felt he could foresee who had real talent and creativity and could then help provide funding necessary to continue their research.
In addition, Bob helped develop, plan, and manage several successful DOE facilities. For example, he assisted with planning the creation of the Environmental Molecular Science Laboratory at the Pacific Northwest National Lab in Richland, Washington which cost $230 million to build, he oversaw the operations of the Combustion Research facility at Sandia Livermore, and the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lab, both in California and partnered with the National Science Foundation (NSF) to fund and develop the Environmental Molecular Science Institutes. He received unexpected funding of $3.5 million to start an advanced battery program. The program contributed significantly to some of the science that is important today in advanced batteries and fuel cells.
In 1998, during the Clinton Administration, Bob took a position as the assistant director for Physical Sciences & Engineering with the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), which is part of the Executive Office of the President.
After retiring from the Government, Bob continued to consult with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Battelle, and other programs within the DOE Office of Science.
Although he left the University of Nebraska in 1977, he continued to make a difference for the university and its students. He served on the Industrial Advisory Board for the UNL Department of Chemistry along with 20 other board members. One of his most prized accomplishments as a board member was the scholarship fund he helped develop. When a prior colleague passed away, Bob said, “I could do what others do and just make out a check to a memorial fund but that money will never reach the endowment level. Then I came up with the idea of a Chemistry Faculty Remembrance Fund.” The concept was to honor faculty who had spent most of their entire career with UNL’s Department of Chemistry and to provide a scholarship to a deserving undergraduate or graduate student with the spendable income generated by this fund. He was pleased that the fund reached the endowment level and several scholarships have since been awarded.
He is survived by his wife Kathy Marianelli and his siblings; Maria Kwiatkowski and John Marianelli from Delaware and Ann Clawson from Naperville, Illinois. He was loved by his extended family of brothers and sisters-in-laws, stepchildren, nieces and nephews, nine grandchildren and one great grandchild.
A celebration of his life will be held in his home on January 25 at 12:30 PM.
In lieu of flowers, donations could be made to the scholarship fund through the “Chemistry Faculty Remembrance Fund # 01116790” at the University of Nebraska or to the Gilchrist Hospice of Howard County which had been so helpful through the months of his illness.
- Are you or someone you know interested in pursuing an undergraduate summer internship with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (two NIST locations), if so, please submit application materials to Tiffany Lee in OPD as described below.
Steps for Submission
Students intending to apply for a fellowship are requested to submit an online Notice of Intent to Submit form by January 22, 2014.
Student applicants should also provide the following information via e-mail attachment to Tiffany Lee, Office of Proposal Development (email@example.com, 402-472-1808), by February 5, 2014:
- Applicable SURF student application form:
- Two letters of recommendation;
- Transcripts (unofficial copies acceptable);
- Personal statement of commitment to participate and description of prioritized research interests;
Verification of U.S. citizenship or permanent legal residence (e.g., copy of birth certificate, passport, or green card).
- The Department of Chemistry would like to congratulate the follow Chemistry minors and majors for making the 2013 Dean’s List this semester!!! To qualify, students must complete 12 credit hours of course work and attain a minimum semester grade point average of 3.700. Congratulations to all of the chemistry students who have accomplished this admirable achievement. Keep up the good work!
Benjamin Lapke Coenen, Elizabeth Anne Grigsby, Rebecca Elizabeth Jarratt, Kaitlin Marie Mizner, Aubrey Faye Schmidt, Michael Gene Stewart, Kevin A Wintz, Christine Ann Zentner, Michael Steve Barrios-Ramirez, Lukas Edward Brenden, Schuyler Ann Chambers, David Joseph Cordwin, Carly Marie Faller, Matthew Aaron Kottwitz, Megan Frances Lee, Aaron Raymond Lindstrom, Yao Liu, Mitchell Lee Milanuk, Molly Marie Miller, Ivan Alejandro Moreno-Hernandez, Kaitlyn Paige Papke, Maria Irina Podariu, Emily Leigh Snell, Megan Elaine Vandergriend, Zijiao Xia, Pierce Avery Dageforde, Tressa Mollie-Marie Gloystein, Levi Logan Borrego, Kathryn Marie Cornwell, Garrett Philip Donaldson, Erin Jane Dougherty, Nikolas Duszenko, Dillon Randall Finch, Joshua John Folchert, Megan Elizabeth Gardner, Kevin Carl Gengel, Mitchell Ray Groninger, Kristen Marie Guiliano, Bridgette Genevieve Hafner, Evin Ralph Hale, Melissa A. Heinert, Lauren Nichole Howell, Luke D Huber, Bryant John Keller, Natasha Leigh Konfrst, Blaise Race Lanoha, Trevon Dean McGill, Carmen Jean Mostek, Cynthia Ngoc Nhi Nguyen, Mai Thao Thi Nguyen, Amber Marie Olson, Matthew Leon Olson, Carl Martin Post, Brian Taylor Richard, Rachael Christine Schmidt, Abigail Mary Schweitzer, Marguerite Ann Torson, Jennifer Natasha Wehrli, Austin Michael Wheeler, Jordan Daniel Wheeler, Joey James Wiggs, Jessica Katherine Wright, and Lindsey Christine Zeplin
- Dr. Jiantao Guo and his research team have just been given the National Research Initiative (NRI) award for their research entitled "Novel Live-Attenuated HIV Vaccine" with a funding period of July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2015. Congratulations Dr. Guo! We look forward to seeing your project developments!