Melanie Veige Launches CHM2045L Bootcamp for UF Online

“The Director of General Chemistry, Melanie Veige, has launched the inaugural CHM2045L bootcamp lab for UF Online students over Summer A 2019. Students first participate in a short online course, developed by Mrs. Veige and instructional designers from the Center for Online Innovation and Production. Students then attend lab in-person for two weeks to perform every lab activity from the regular CHM2045L course. In the General Chemistry lab, run by Donna Turner and Candace Biggerstaff, graduate students Diana Choi and Anthony Pastore meet with the students each day to shepherd them through lab activities. The course is the culmination of over a year of collaboration between the Department of Chemistry and UF Online, with input from the Statewide University System. The course is a unique and exciting opportunity for our online students to experience hands-on learning while they interact with instructors, teaching assistants, and fellow students. See the UF Online corresponding blog post here: 

Ehsan Fereyduni Designated a 2019 CAS Future Leader

Grenning Lab rising 5th year graduate studentEhsan Fereyduni is designated a 2019 CAS Future Leader. CAS Future Leaders are “an elite group of Ph.D. students and postdoctoral researchers from around the world that will visit CAS headquarters in Columbus, Ohio and blaze a trail toward scientific leadership.? The Department of Chemistry congratulates Ehsan for his excellent Ph.D. work and imaginative thinking that has resulted in this honor!

Undergraduate researcher in biological chemistry receives CLAS Scholars Award

Alexander Duong, an undergraduate researcher in the Eddy Research Group, was recently named a recipient of a College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS) Scholar Award. UF CLAS provides this award to high achieving undergraduate students who show great promise for making significant contributions to original scientific research, and the award provides undergraduate students an opportunity to work one-on-one with a CLAS faculty member on a research project. Alex is a rising sophomore and chemistry major, and he will be studying the structures and functions of human G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). GPCRs are sensory proteins on the surfaces of cells involved in numerous diseases including cancers, heart disease, and diabetes. GPCRs are the target of over 1/3 of FDA-approved drugs and are top targets for the development of new therapeutics. Alex?s research will focus on improving our understanding of the activity of GPCRs to improve drug design criteria.

Robin Kemperman – Named UF’s Outstanding Graduate Student of 2019

Robin is a Ph.D. Candidate in the department of chemistry and works under the direction of Dr. Yost. He was chosen for the Outstanding Graduate Student Award by the Graduate Student Council at UF for the year of 2019. This award is only awarded to 2 out of roughly 17,000 UF graduate students annually for outstanding academic contributions and services to the graduate school. Robin has mentored several graduate and undergraduate students on a variety of projects. In addition, he has collaborated on a number of projects resulting in over 35 scientific contributions, including publications, presentations, posters, and an international patent application. He also has served as a committee member on the UF student conduct board, graduate student council representative, and journal club coordinator.

Ashley Erb and Chris Brewer Received Graduate Teaching Awards

Ashley Erb is a second year graduate student in the Aponick group, who has been teaching in our CHM2211L lab course for two years. For Ashley, Organic Chemistry really energizes her and she strives to pass on this enthusiasm to her students. Ashley’s skills as an instructor have recently been recognized by both the Chemistry Department and the University of Florida, and she is a recipient of a 2018-2019 University of Florida Graduate Student Teaching Award.

Christopher Brewer has been honored as a recipient of the 2018 – 2019 UF Graduate Student Teaching Award.  This award is presented by the UF Graduate School and awardees are nominated by their department.  Chris is a fourth year graduate student in the McElwee-White group and has taught CHM1025 as instructor seven times over four years.  Chris has had the opportunity to share his passion for chemistry with over two thousand students during his time teaching at UF.  During lectures Chris incorporates numerous live chemistry demonstrations to foster excitement about learning.  Additionally, Chris coordinates and teaches an Honors Harry Potter-themed Potions Camp for incoming freshmen to the UF Honors Program.  To Chris, teaching others is a very rewarding part of his graduate career.

Christopher Brewer Receives UF Graduate Student Mentoring Award

Christopher Brewer has been honored with the UF Graduate Student Mentoring Award. This award is presented by the UF Graduate School and all graduate students at UF are eligible. Brewer is a fourth year graduate student in the McElwee-White lab. During his time here he has mentored two undergraduate students (Olivia Hawkins and Nicholas Sheehan) and two graduate students (Hanwen Liu and Courtney Sparrow). To Chris, mentoring others is a very rewarding part of his graduate career here.

New Faculty Hire: Alix Rexford – Biochemistry Lecturer

Dr. Rexford received her bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry from the College of Charleston. She earned her PhD in Biochemistry at Florida State University studying protein-protein interactions involved with the activation of the glycolytic enzyme glucokinase under the guidance of Dr. Brian Miller. Since 2016 she has taught chemistry and biochemistry at Florida State University. Dr. Rexford’s goal is to facilitate critical thinking in her classroom through application-based problem solving. She is excited to bring her skills to the University of Florida Department of Chemistry.