My research interests include organic synthesis and methodology, molecular recognition, and the design and implementation of new undergraduate laboratory experiments. Currently students in my laboratory are working on a short and efficient synthesis of tetraethynyladamantane 1. The alkynes will be functionalized with "sticky" ends so as to promote the self-assembly into a lattice framework.
Students have also investigated the use of microwave technology as an energy source in the undergraduate laboratory with the goal of developing new labs that can be performed in one laboratory period.
My primary interests in teaching are in the area of organic chemistry. In addition to teaching the sophomore Organic Chemistry course, I also teach Physical Organic Chemistry, Polymer Chemistry and team-teach Synthesis and Characterization. Each of these classes is taught such that the student is fully engaged in the learning process. I also enjoy teaching both Chemistry Of Food and Women in Science as non-majors courses.
CH250-251 Organic Chemistry I & II
Organic chemistry is most simply defined as the study of carbon compounds. Carbon-based compounds are all around us: from the food we eat to the clothes we wear; from the plastics used to make our cars to the fuel that powers them; from our medicines to the make-up of our DNA. This course focuses on learning to name organic compounds, identifying organic compounds based on structure, how and why compounds react and finally how to make new organic compounds.
My section of organic chemistry features teaching using the Process-Oriented Guided-Inquiry Learning (www.pogil.org). POGIL is predicated on the scientific method, where students are provided with models, form hypotheses and through a series of questions determine the validity of the hypothesis and draw conclusions. Over the course of scientific history, theories that are initially proposed to explain phenomena are often refined or sometimes disproved as more data becomes available, and new theories are proposed that are more accurate. In this class, you will often be wrong or partially correct in your initially theory but as your proceed you will find that you will understand your misconception and better be able to correct it, on the way to a greater understanding of the material.
Straumanis, Andrei Organic Chemistry; A Guided Inquiry 2nd Edition, Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 2009.
Brown, William H.; Foote, Christopher S.; Iverson, Brent L.; Anslyn, Eric V. Organic Chemistry 5th Edition, Brooks/Cole Cengage Learning, United States, 2009.
As the Chief Health Professions Advisor I assist students who are interested in pursuing graduate education in the health sciences, including allopathic, osteopathic and podiatric medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, physician's assistant, pharmacy, physical therapy, and optometry. In addition, I chair the College's Pre-professional Committee who interviews these students in their junior year in preparation of their applications to these schools.