Graduate Student Receives CHAS Graduate Student Safety Leadership Award

Graduate student Cristian Aviles-Martin (Pinkhassik Group) is the recent co-recipient of the ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety (DCHAS) Graduate Student Leadership Award.

Cristian was part of the team of graduate students that were awarded this honor for the contributions towards laboratory safety at their respective institutions and for their work done in developing and facilitating the DCHAS workshop “Empowering Academic Researchers to Strengthen Safety Culture.”

Team members and co-recipients also include: Continue reading

Fulbright Distinguished Chair Award 2021-22

Professor Challa Vijaya Kumar of the Chemistry Department has won the Fulbright Distinguished Chair Award 2021-22 from the US State Department for his proposal on desalination by forward osmosis. He will conduct research in developing protein-based membranes for desalination by a revolutionary concept using state of the art methods. This is his fourth Fulbright award from the US State Department.

Tejas Bhosale Receives GSS Community Service Award

Congratulations to Ph.D. student Tejas Bhosale (Suib Group) for being recognized as the second runner-up for the Graduate Student Senate (GSS) Community Service Award for the 2020-2021 academic year. This award honors a graduate student, who, through his or her exemplary service, has made significant contributions to the intellectual, cultural, and professional capital of the entire graduate student community at the University of Connecticut. In recognition, the GSS is also granting Bhosale a $250 scholarship.

2021 Women in Business Honorees

Assistant research professor Nicole Wagner ’07 (CLAS), ’13 Ph.D. was recently named among the Hartford Business Journal’s 2021 Women in Business Honorees. 25 total honorees were recognized for their inspiring leadership at the forefront of Connecticut’s industries. 

Wagner is the President and CEO of LambdaVision, a start-up company commercializing technology developed in the lab of professor emeritus Robert Birge. LambdaVision works to develop artificial retinas that could help patients regain their sight.

When asked about her key to maintaining business success, Wagner tells the Hartford Business Journal: “I think it is important to work hard, be authentic and to create an environment that is centered around trust and open communication. It is critical to lead by example; if you aren’t excited and passionate about what you do, it will be hard to get others to follow.”

Read more about Dr. Nicole Wagner and all 2021 Women in Business Honorees.

UConn Nation Raises $1,000 for the Bobbitt-Chou Fund

During this year’s UConn Gives, a 36-hour giving initiative March 23-24, members of UConn Nation raised $1,000 for the Bobbitt-Chou Fund for Graduate Chemistry Students! Whether you contributed a gift or helped to spread the word, we want to THANK YOU for supporting impactful graduate research opportunities within UConn Chemistry! 

More information about the UConn Gives Bobbitt-Chou Fundraising effort and the past fellowship recipients can be found here.

American Chemical Society Division of Inorganic Chemistry Travel Award Winner

Congratulations to graduate student Scott Pierce (Angeles-Boza Group) for winning the American Chemical Society Division of Inorganic Chemistry (ACS-DIC) Travel Award. This program supports graduate students intending to present research talks or posters at ACS National Meetings.

Scott will also be presenting in the ACS Spring 2021 (to be held online from April 5 – 30). He will be presenting his work on “Peptide-Ruthenium Conjugate as an Efficient Photosensitizer for the Inactivation of Multidrug Resistant Bacteria.”

NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Recipient

Congratulations to graduate student Caroline Donaghy (Angeles-Boza Groupfor being awarded the prestigious NSF Graduate Research Fellowship. The NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program (NSF GRFP) recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported STEM disciplines.

Caroline will be working on developing green pesticides using glycopeptides throughout her fellowship.

The Research of our Environment: How UConn Researchers are Working to Save the Planet

With insects declining precipitously, plastics building up in our oceans, and indigenous cultures suffering under misguided eco-policies, these UConn researchers are working to save the planet, one ethical decision at a time.

About 30 years ago, the waters of the Long Island Sound were looking bleak.

Pollution from the more than nine million people living in the Sound’s watershed had reached epic heights. Nitrogen runoff led to chronic seasonal blooms of algae, which led to bacteria consuming so much oxygen that periodically, piles of dead fish turned up on beaches. Swimming was frequently banned in many areas, and the public began to notice in ways they hadn’t before.

“It was obvious that hypoxia in the Long Island Sound had been worsening and expanding,” says Penny Vlahos, associate professor of marine sciences*.

Enter the Long Island Sound Study, an unprecedented partnership among Connecticut and New York state government agencies, scientists, and nonprofit groups. Formed in 1985, it began collecting data on the Sound that informed an early-90’s conservation and management plan to restore the Sound to health.

Now, Vlahos and her colleagues have put this hard work to the test, showing that the Sound has vastly improved – but with some big caveats. Continue reading