Each year the UW Department of Chemistry acknowledges our top scholars. Our award for Distinguished Achievement in Chemistry Research is given to graduating seniors who have performed exceptional research in Chemistry. This year’s recipients are:
- Jeremy Tran
- Christine Buffalow
- Alec Heckert
- Matthew Ellis
- Branden Vandermoon
- Torin Stetina
The Award for the Outstanding student in Inorganic Chemistry has been awarded to
The Award for the Outstanding student in Analytical Chemistry has been awarded to
The PC Cross Award for the top student in Physical Chemistry has been awarded to
The Hyp Dauben Award for the top student in Honors Organic Chemistry has been awarded to
The Honors General Chemistry Achievement Award for the top students in Honors General Chemistry has been awarded to
Congratulations on your achievements!
Congratulations to Jane Kwon, Cindy Wei, and Wenbi Wu who have been named Levinson Emerging Scholars!
Jane Kwon is a senior in the Department of Biochemistry. She joined Dr. Kaeberlein’s lab during her freshman year with an interest in aging and neurodegenerative diseases. Starting as a yeast dissector, she helped to collect and quantify Replicative Lifespan Data of S. cerevisae. She then shifted her focus onto the role of mitochondrial health in aging using C. elegans, as a model system. She aspires to become a physician.
Cindy Wei is a senior majoring in Biochemistry (BS) and minoring in Global Health with Departmental Honors in Biochemistry. In her junior year she joined the Hoppins lab in the Department of Biochemistry, working on the molecular characterization of mitochondrial movement. Her current project focuses on the expression and purification of the proteins involved in microtubule directed mitochondrial transport: Trak1/2 and Miro1/2. Once these recombinant proteins have been obtained she will rebuild the transport machinery in vitro to investigate the function of each protein and their effects on each other in a simple system. Her undergraduate research experience has inspired her to continue to be involved in research and to go on to pursue a PhD after graduation in June 2015.
Wenbi Wu is a senior in Biochemistry (BS), Chemistry (BS) and Mathematics (minor) with Departmental Honors in Chemistry and Biochemistry. Starting from her freshman year, Wenbi began doing research in the lab of Professor David Ginger. Her research area is in hybrid polymer/quantum dot solar cells, with a current research focus on the morphology in hybrid polymer/quantum dot solar cell treated with different quantum dot surface ligands. In collaboration with the Moule group at UC Davis, she is trying to obtain a detailed three-dimensional tomography images. The goal is to better understand and control of morphology in these films to optimize the solar cell performance.
Congratulations to Nicolle Esparo who has been named a recipient of the Bonderman Travel Fellowship. The Bonderman Travel Fellowship awards $20,000 to support students to engage in international travel. Recipients must travel for a minimum of eight months in at least six countries in two or more major regions of the world. Nicolle plans to visit Uruguay, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. Happy travels, Nicolle!
This year the Chemistry Department has decided to have to two “Commencement” speeches given by two graduating students at our Chemistry and Biochemistry Graduation and Awards Recognition Celebration that will be held on Wednesday, June 11, at 8:30pm. We plan on selecting one biochemistry major and one chemistry major to each give brief (around 5 minutes) commencement speeches. If you are interested in being considered for one of the speakers, please send a one page abstract of what your speech will entail to firstname.lastname@example.org, by Friday, April 25. A committee will review the abstracts and then contact selected students who will be invited to present their speech before the committee. Students will be notified by mid-May of the Committee’s decision.
Congratulations to Jeremy Tran who has won the prestigious Goldwater Scholarship! Jeremy is a BS Chemistry ACS & BS Biochemistry major conducting research with the Karen Goldberg Group investigating the use of water as the terminal oxidant in the oxidation of aldehydes to carboxylic acids.
The University Honors Program has spotlighted the Department of Chemistry on their website. Interviews with two of our honors students, Chinonso Opara and Ben Horst, are included along with an interview with Prof. Gary Drobny, the Associate Chair for Undergraduate Chemistry.
The article can be found at http://depts.washington.edu/uwhonors/features/dept_honors_chem/
Congratulations to Alex Vaschillo who was won the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation award!
Alex works in the Masiello Group in the UW Department of Chemistry. His research studies the collective oscillations of conduction electrons in metal nanoparticles known as localized surface plasmon resonances (LSPRs). The LSPRs have been the source of much scientific study over the last decade due to their immediate and significant applications in chemical catalysis, drug delivery, and cancer reduction therapy.
Congratulations to Chrissy Stachl who has won a Pfizer Air Diversity Fellowship! The fellowship will support her research in Chemistry Professor Matt Bush’s group where she is using ion mobility spectrometry and mass spectrometry to investigate the effects of divalent metal ion binding on the structures of monomers and dimers of the core domain of the protein B-crystalline.
Congratulations to Margaux Pinney, Denis Smirnov, Christoffer Amdahl, and Derek Britain who have been named Levinson Emerging Scholars.
Margaux Pinney works in the lab of Chemistry Professor Jim Mayer. She originally investigated the potential for proton-coupled electron transfer at synthetic iron-sulfer clusters before moving on to her current independent project which investigates the reversibility of Compound I formation in horseradish peroxidase.
Denis Smirnov works with Prof. John Neumaier in Psychiatry to investigate the role of the Lateral Habenula and the Rostromedial Tegmental Nucleus in Cocaine Addiction. An important problem in the treatment of cocaine addiction is the vulnerability of previously addicted individuals to relapse to cocaine use months or even years after abstinence. The lateral habenula and the rostromedial tegmental nucleus are important regulators of the midbrain dopaminergic systems that are known to be involved in cocaine taking and relapse behaviors.
Derek Britain works in Dr. Roger Brent’s lab at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Using budding yeast as a model organism, Derek researches how cells gather information from their environment, how this information is processed by the cell, and how a cell makes a decision based on the results. Currently, he is investigating the role microtubule end binding proteins play in signal transmission and fidelity. Derek is also investigating mutant forms of these proteins found in the human population, and if these mutations result in poor signal handling that could result in poor cell decisions.
Christoffer Amdahl began work in the de la Iglesia lab sophomore year of college studying the Neurobiology of Circadian Rhythms. Currently, his project consists the examination of the phosphorylation state of Phosephodiesterase-5 and its role in the cGMP-mediated light induced phase advance that occurs in the Suprachiasmatic Nucleus. This will hopefully develop a better understanding of the neurochemical mechanisms underlying circadian rhythms, as well as the means to provide pharmacological treatment.
Congratulations to Shiv Bhandari, Jeremy Housekeeper, and Alex Vaschillo who have won Washington Research Fellowships!
Shiv Bhandari works in the Murray lab at the UW Department of Pathology. His research is dedicated to developing stem-cell therapies for myocardial infarctions. Shiv is currently engineering a device to simulate the mechanical environment of the heart.
Jeremy Housekeeper works in the lab of Professor Christine Luscombe in Materials Science and Engineering. He is currently working on the development of next-generation materials and synthetic techniques for organic electronics applications.
His current project focuses on the synthesis of dithienothiophene (DTT) and other molecules through C-H activation.
Alex Vaschillo works in the Masiello Group in the UW Department of Chemistry. His research studies the collective oscillations of conduction electrons in metal nanoparticles known as localized surface plasmon resonances (LSPRs). The LSPRs have been the source of much scientific study over the last decade due to their immediate and significant applications in chemical catalysis, drug delivery, and cancer reduction therapy.
Congratulations Shiv, Jeremy and Alex!