Dr. Malika Jeffries-EL, coauthor of a paper selected for the Journal of Materials Chemistry C Hot Papers
BU Chemistry Professors are moving and shaking these days, with publications like this on being accepted into Journals such as the 2016 Journal of Materials Chemistry C Hot Papers.
The paper, whose lead author was Dr. Ramiro Chavez, a graduate student at BU in the lab of Malika Jeffries-EL, focuses on a structure–property investigation of a series of cross-conjugated molecules shows that their performance is dependent on both the nature of the substituents and their conjugation axis.
For more information on the publication click here.
2016 NEIC Distinguished Chemist:
Professor Mark W. Grinstaff
Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Chemistry
Director, Center for Nanoscience and Nanobiotechnology
Every year NEIC gives an award to a Distinguished Chemist in New England who has made substantial contributions to not only their field, but also to promoting chemistry through education, outreach, and service to the community. This year, the Executive Committee voted for Mark Grinstaff.
The NEIC promotes educational and professional excellence in all areas of chemistry through its Awards Dinner which was held this year at Brandeis University on Thursday, April 21. For over half a century the NEIC has honored graduating seniors from colleges and universities in New England who are recipients of the national the AIC student award. In addition to receiving a certificate, the awardees are given a complimentary, one-year student membership in the AIC. In 1994, the NEIC initiated the Secondary School Teachers Award. An outstanding high school teacher from each New England state is given an engraved plaque at the banquet. Also at the dinner theDistinguished Chemist Award, this given to our very own Mark Grinstaff, is presented to an outstanding member of the academic, business, or government chemical community in New England. He was also the keynote speaker at the event.
Congratulations Mark on your achievement!
BU Chemistry Alumni Gathering
In conjunction with the 250th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) BU’s Chemistry department hosted an Alumni Reception at the beautiful Seaport Hotel.
The reception was a tremendous success attracting over 150 alumni, faculty, students and guests. Ann Cudd, the new Dean of the College of Art and Sciences was in attendance. One of the things that impressed greatly Dean Cudd was the interesting and varied career paths alumni have followed after leaving BU. One of the highlights of the event was the attendance of the esteemed Bassaam Shakashiri, member of the 1960 graduating class and past ACS president. His brand of fun science has brought many to the field of Chemistry. By far the best part of the gathering was having so many BU Chemistry graduates re-connecting with other alums, faculty, students and staff. BU’s Chemistry Department has produced some amazing graduates and it’s always great to create opportunities like this for them to stay connected.
Chemistry Chair Lawrence Ziegler surprised the guests by announcing the appointment Dr. Malika Jeffries-EL. Dr. Jeffries-EL will come to BU from Iowa State University where she is an Associate Professor of Chemistry. Her research focuses on the development of organic semiconductors–materials that combine the processing properties of polymers with the electronic properties of semiconductors. She will be an excellent addition to the Departments’ faculty and we are excited for her to join the Chemistry Faculty in January 2016.
Over two dozen of our undergraduate and graduate students presenting either talks or posters at the ACS National Meeting. If you’d like to check out a list of the students and the projects they presented you can find them here.
Assistant Professor Ksenia Bravaya was recently selected by Boston University to receive the an award from the Patricia Mclellan Leavitt Research Fund. This award is designed “to support research of one or more non-tenured junior faculty members, or graduate students, in chemistry or biology at the College of Arts and Sciences. Preference shall be given to female faculty who demonstrate a commitment to encouraging women to study science, or to female graduate students.”
Dr. Bravaya will use these funds to support her research into challenging electronic structure phenomena in biomolecules and systems relevant for materials, which include photoinduced processes, autoionizing electronic states, and magnetic field effects. This award will help her and her team use and develop high-level electronic structure methods targeting processes involving multiple electronic states, chemistry of open-shell species in magnetic fields, and electronically excited and metastable systems.
Congratulations to Professor Bravaya!
Dr. Beeler, who has been a tenure track faculty member in Boston University’s Chemistry Department since 2012, was recently awarded a 5-Year early investigator award through the NSF CAREER grant program. The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation’s most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations. Such activities should build a firm foundation for a lifetime of leadership in integrating education and research.
Research in the Beeler Group is very multidisciplinary. They are focused on synthesis and medicinal chemistry of biologically active small molecules by developing efficient and scalable processes to synthesize scaffolds of interest. One of the core components in their research is development of continuous flow technologies to develop photochemical reactions, electrochemical reactions, and reactions utilizing highly reactive intermediates.
With the CAREER award, Dr. Beeler plans to focus his research on the development of powerful flow reactions that will transform the way chemists think about challenging chemical reactions. In parallel to these efforts he will continue expanding our activities in outreach and education to further the growth of Chemistry in STEM education.
Michael Gooley, Chemistry’s Chief Financial Officer, wins Boston University’s 2016 Perkins Service Award
It is my great pleasure to announce that Mike Gooley, Chemistry’s Chief Financial Administrator, is one of three recipients of the 2016 John S. Perkins Service Award! This award is presented to three members of the BU community in recognition of their distinguished service to the University. This is certainly a well deserved honor for Mike whose dedication, professionalism and expertise in the financial management of our department has contributed to our overall success.
Please join me in congratulating Mike on the receipt of this award and thanking him for his outstanding contributions throughout his entire time at BU!
Boston University’s Chemistry Department is proud to announce that Professor John Straub has been selected as this year’s recipient of the United Methodist Church Scholar/Teacher of the Year Award! This award is given each year to a Boston University faculty member in recognition of their record of ongoing, outstanding research and scholarship, and excellence as a teacher. This is one of the highest honors Boston University bestows to one of its faculty members.
Professor Straub’s research explores protein dynamics and thermodynamics using theoretical and computational methods, with a particular focus on elucidating pathways for conformational change associated with protein energy transfer, signaling, folding, and aggregation. He also works with the Pinhead Institute, a Smithsonian Affiliate based in Telluride, Colorado that strives to promote science-education both locally & globally. The Pinhead Institute educates and inspires children and adults in the greater Telluride region about the wonders of science and technology.
Congratulations to Professor Straub on receiving this much deserved award.
Can a molecule be beautiful?
As director of BU’s Center for Molecular Discovery (CMD), John Porco has helped to create some 7,000 new molecules. To a chemist’s eye, their ornate “architecture” makes them beautiful, says Porco. But to the millions of people with conditions like Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, and infections that don’t respond to existing therapies, these molecules have beauty of a very different kind: they just might be able to treat diseases that today’s drugs can’t cure.
The molecules in the CMD’s boutique library are far more complex than those you’d find in standard, off-the-shelf compounds. That makes them more like the biologically active molecules found in nature, and more likely to deliver precision treatments that aren’t toxic to healthy cells. But it also makes them challenging to synthesize. In fact, drug makers traditionally prefer to use simple molecules because they are easier to create in the lab.
“When you’re running the same reaction dozens or hundreds of times, you want it to work every time, so people generally use very simple reactions, which generally give rise to very simple molecules,” explains Lauren Brown, research assistant professor of chemistry and assistant director of the CMD. “The more complex a molecule is, the more difficult it is to put together.”
Dr. Perlstein, who has been with Boston University’s Chemistry Department since 2010, was recently awarded a 5-Year early investigator award through the NSF CAREER grant program.The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation’s most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations. Such activities should build a firm foundation for a lifetime of leadership in integrating education and research.
Dr. Perlstein’s research focuses on how metals are mobilized and monitored within the cell so that they get to where they need to go and do not end up in places they shouldn’t. With this new five-year grant, Dr. Perlstein plans to unravel the molecular mechanism by which iron-sulfur cluster cofactors are assembled in the cytosol of eukaryotic organisms. Since inhibition of this first step in cluster biosynthesis can lead to defects in DNA replication, DNA repair and protein synthesis, she expects this work will provide new insight into how cluster biogenesis affects these other fundamental biochemical pathways.
With the CAREER award, Perlstein also plans to develop new undergraduate course curriculum as well as building on current STEM outreach program efforts to begin training the next generation of scientists.
To learn more about Dr. Perlstein and her groups research activities visit her Faculty page: http://www.bu.edu/chemistry/faculty/perlstein/.
In an effort to develop the next generation of Chemistry researchers, the National Science Foundation Division of Chemistry has sponsored the proposal of Professor Malika Jeffries-EL and co-PI Jeff Moore for the University of Illinois-Urbana Champagne to hold an NSF Chemistry Early Career Investigator Workshop. The objective of these workshops is to provide early career chemist with networking opportunities and relevant information needed to better assess their research ideas, projects, and plans so as to more effectively compete for grant applications to the NSF CAREER program, other NSF programs and other federal agencies.
The 2016 NSF Chemistry Early Career Investigator workshop is a two-day event, to be held March 10th-11th 2016 in Arlington VA at the Hilton Garden Inn, which is close to the NSF headquarters, enabling the participation of many program officers. The location also provides attendees with the opportunity to visit the NSF and follow up with specific program directors before or after the workshop. Additionally, this location is close to the headquarters of other federal agencies such as the Department of Energy (DOE), National institute of Health (NIH), and various defense agencies enabling participation from members of these organizations.
The workshop is expected to have approximately 120 participants and will be open to investigators performing research in NSF-supported disciplines within the United States. While the workshop is primarily intended for junior faculty members, advanced graduate students, postdocs, and other research scientist may also apply.
For more information, including applications, visit the 2016 NSF Chemistry Early Career Investigator Workshop webpage.