UWO Chemistry - Current News (2006 - 07 Academic Year)

June 2007: Professor Nicholas Payne will retire on July 1, 2007 after 38 years of service. He obtained his BSc in Chemistry in 1964 from the Imperial College of Science and Technology, England followed by his PhD from Sheffield University. After two years as a postdoctoral fellow and Fulbright Scholar under the direction of Prof James Ibers at Northwestern University, he joined Western in 1969. He has supervised 12 MSc and PhD students and published over 120 papers in chemical crystallography. Nick will be remembered for his excellent contributions not only as an instructor but, more importantly, as the coordinator of the first-year chemistry. His frank opinions on the Appointments and Promotion committees of the Department were always refreshing. His most lasting contribution, however, has been in the area of x-ray crystallography. Through his two graduate courses in crystallography, Chem 541 and Chem 641, Nick has not only trained, but also instilled an appreciation of the complexity and beauty of x-ray crystallography in a countless number of graduate students (and a few faculty!). We thank him for these contributions and wish him the best as he enters this new phase of his career.

June 2007: We are pleased to announce that Professor Peter Norton has been elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. Fellows of the RSC are recognized for achieving excellence in their endeavours. The RSC, founded in 1882, is Canada’s oldest and most prestigious scholarly organization. Election to RSC is the highest honour that can be attained by scholars, artists and scientists in Canada. Congratulations, Peter!

June 2007: Prof. Mel Usselman has been awarded one of the inaugural Leadership in Faculty Teaching Awards from the Ontario government. The awards were developed to recognize and encourage teaching excellence at Ontario's colleges and universities, and are given to faculty who influence, motivate, and inspire students and demonstrate leadership in teaching methods for the diverse student body in Ontario. Congratulations, Mel!

June 2007: Prof. Roland Haines has been awarded this year's Dean's Special Award of Merit. Roland has been an integral part of the Dean's Office in the Faculty of Science for 23 years, and this award is an appropriate recognition for his years of outstanding service. More details here. Congratulations, Roland!

June 2007: Jessica McLachlan is the recipient of the Xerox Canada Award in the Macromolecular Science and Engineering Division at the Canadian Society for Chemistry Conference held recently in Winnipeg, Manitoba for her poster entitled, Microscale Bioactive Patterning: A Novel Surface Modification of Poly(dimethylsiloxane). Congratulations
Jessica!

June 2007: The Canadian Nuclear Society awarded graduate students Mike Broczkowski and Wei Xu, and undergraduate Kevin Daub, for their presentations at the student conference in St. John, New Brunswick. In addition, Mike Broczkowski and Jared Smith were recently awarded the R.E. Jervis Award from the CNS for their excellence in graduate research. Congratulations to Mike, Wei, Kevin, and Jared!

June 2007: We are excited to announce that the graduate students listed below have received A Special International Research (ASPIRE) awards for 2007. The purpose of the award is to provide graduate students with invaluable research and life experience outside of Canada. More details here.

  • Preeti Chadha (to work with Ian Manners at the University of Bristol, UK)
  • Pellumb Jakupi (to work with Robert Kelly at the University of Virginia, USA)
  • Chhatra Khadka (to work with Annie Powell at the Universitaet Karlsruhe, Germany)
  • Than Ngu (to work with Stephen Sturzenbaum at King's College, London UK)
  • Laura Pavelka (to work with Simon Holder at the University of Kent, UK)

May 2007: We are delighted to announce that NSERC scholarships and fellowships have been award to many Chemistry students or recent graduates. Congratulations to all!

  • PGSM: Christina Booker and Diane Kanas
  • PGSD2: Stephen Jackson, Andrew Leduc, and Craig Wheaton
  • PGSD3: Jessica McLachlan and Mark Pluym
  • CGSM: Jason Dutton
  • CGSD2: Thanh Ngu
  • IPS: Brent Sherar
  • PDF: Ian Young

May 2007: The Faculty of Science views high-quality teaching as the most important part of its mandate in mounting high-quality undergraduate programs. Banghao Chen, an exceptional teaching assistant for Chemistry 020, has been awarded a Faculty of Science Graduate Student Teaching Award. Congratulations, Banghao!

May 2007: Graduate students Jun Zhu, Stephen Jackson, and Natasha Patrito have been selected to receive the CSC 2004 Conference Travel Awards. These travel awards were made possible by the proceeds of the Canadian Society for Chemistry 2004 Conference, which was held in London in 2004. Jun and Stephen will be using the travel awards to attend the CSC 2007 conference in Winnipeg, while Natasha will be travelling to Germany for Euromat 2007. Congratulations, and have a great trip!

April 2007: Michael Andrews is the Western recipient of the Canadian Society for Chemistry Silver Medal for undergraduate studies in Chemistry for 2006. The medal is awarded to a student entering the final year of an undergraduate program in Chemistry or Biochemistry with the highest marks. Congratulations Michael!

April 2007: Dr. Nick Mosey was presented with the 2006 Paul de Mayo award for the best doctoral thesis in Chemistry. In the photo below, from left to right, are Dr. Kim Baines, Dr. Nick Mosey, and his supervisor, Dr. Tom Woo. Nick is currently completing his postdoctoral studies at Princeton University. Congratulations Nick!

Paul de Mayo Award

April 2007: Pam Yakabuskie, a student in the third year of our undergraduate program, has been awarded one of two Canadian Nuclear Society scholarships to work in Clara Wren's research group. The scholarships are awarded to undergraduate students in nuclear science and engineering at Canadian universities for specific summer work projects related to nuclear science and engineering. Congratulations Pam!

March 2007: We are delighted to announce that Cheryl Carson (MAK) and Banghao Chen (YH) are winners of this year's Lumsden Graduate Fellowship and Lumsden Graduate Award, respectively. Congratulations Cheryl and Banghao!

March 2007: Eighteen students and two faculty from Western attended the SOUSCC Southern Ontario Undergraduate Student Chemistry Conference at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology in Oshawa. There were ~95 speakers in six concurrent sessions and 32 posters covering all areas of chemistry. Three Western students, listed below, were awarded prizes for their presentations. Congratulations to all, and thank you to Prof. Payne for organizing the trip on behalf of the many student presenters from Western!

  • Barb Bajtos (BLP), 1st place, organic chemistry
  • Janice Calzavara (ERG), 3rd place, materials and polymer
  • Kevin Daub (JCW), 2nd place, physical and theoretical

Prof Kraatz

March 2007: We are delighted to annouce that Dr. Bernie Kraatz will be joining our department this summer. He is currently a Professor and Canada Research Chair in Biomaterials at the University of Saskatchewan's Department of Chemistry. In 2006, he was awarded the Canadian Society for Chemistry’s Award for Pure and Applied Chemistry. Dr. Kraatz’s research interests are diverse, ranging from bioconjugate design to interfacial electron transfer, and complement those in Materials and Biomaterials in the Department of Chemistry and the Faculty of Science as well as those under the umbrella of WINS. Welcome, Bernie!

February 2007: Ms. Cheryl O'Meara, Graduate Coordinator, was nominated for a 2007 Western Award of Excellence. A lunch was held on February 26, 2007 for all UWO staff nominated for this prestigious award. With Cheryl at the lunch were (from left to right: front row) Mary Martin (Graduate Coordinator from Biology), Cheryl O'Meara, Kim Baines, Phil Dean, (back row) Sandy McCaw (Departmental Secretary) and Darlene MacDonald (Graduate Assistant).

Cheryl O'Meara

January 2007: Congratulations to Profs. Ken Yeung and Brian Pagenkopf, who have been promoted to the rank of Associate Professor and granted tenure, and to Prof. John Corrigan, who has been promoted to Professor, all effective July 1, 2007. Congratulations on your achievements!

January 2007: Congratulations to graduate students Dong Fu, Kristina Jurcic, and Brad Payne for winning Christian Sivertz Scholarships in the Department of Chemistry for best overall performance in physical chemistry graduate courses. The students are supervised by Profs. Clara Wren, Ken Yeung, and Stewart McIntyre, respectively.

December 2006: We are thrilled to announce that Prof. François Lagugné-Labarthet will be joining the Department of Chemistry in January. François is presently at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in France working on optical near-field scanning microscopy and spectroscopy techniques for the vibrational characterization of nano- and meso-organized materials. He obtained his PhD at the Université Bordeaux under the supervision of Dr. Claude Sourisseau. His experience also includes research on optics in the groups of late Prof. Almeria Natansohn and Paul Rochon (Royal Military College) and Prof. Ron Shen (UC at Berkeley). Welcome, François!

François Lagugné-Labarthet

November 2006: Construction of the Materials Science Addition begins! Details of the MSA are found below (July 2006). Check out our live webcam and our Flickr photo gallery.

Construction

November 2006: We are delighted that Profs. Nathan Jones and Paul Ragogna are receipients of Early Researcher Awards from the Government of Ontario. These awards are provided to outstanding, early researchers to assist their recruitment of graduate students. Congratulations Nathan and Paul!

November 2006: Congratulations to Mike Johansen on the receipt of an Alfred Bader Scholarship from the CSC, which is offered as a mark of excellence for achievement in organic chemistry or biochemistry by undergraduates completing their final year of study in an honours program. For a description of his accomplishments, please see page 28 of the Nov./Dec. edition of the 2006 ACCN.

Mike Johansen

October 2006: National Chemistry Week. On October 21, the undergraduate Chem Club kick-started the event with a fun and educational outreach demonstration at White Oaks Mall, London (photo below). Children and their parents prepared colourful slime and experienced first-hand demonstrations involving dry ice and liquid nitrogen, and most of all, they also learned about the fascinating applications of chemistry. We thank Sandy Zakaria-Holtslag and all the Chem Club members for their excellent work!

Outreach at White Oaks Mall

September 2006: We are delighted to annouce that Professor Beth Gillies has been awarded a Polanyi Prize and appointed Canada Research Chair. In honour of Nobel-prize receipient John Charles Polanyi, the Government of Ontario awards the Polanyi prize to recognize the research accomplishments of talented, young scientists. The Canada Research Chair professorships are established by the Government of Canada "to attract and retain some of the world's most accomplished and promising minds." Congratulations Beth!

August 2006: Summer Picnic 2006 a Success. Over 100 members of our chemistry community and their families participated in this year's summer picnic. A good time was had by all! We are thankful to everyone who participated in the departmental picnic yesterday, especially members of the Social Committee Anna Vandendries-Barr, Nathan Jones, Andrea Wallette, Yun Yang, Robert Harbottle, Laura Pavelka, and others, including Sandy McCaw, Robert Hudson, Robert Harbottle's children, Bill Meath, Phil Dean, Darlene McDonald, Clara Fernandes and Kim Baines and everyone else that donated time and worked to make the picnic a success. We also thank Darlene Hagen for taking some pictures of the event, which you can view here.

August 2006: We are pleased to announce that Professor Nathan D. Jones has been selected for a PetroCanada Young Investigator Award. These awards were established to recognize, promote and support outstanding new faculty researchers whose work is particularly innovative, impacts positively on the learning environment in the department in which they study, and has the potential to be of significance to society at large. The program is intended to help attract and retain bright young minds at Canadian Universities and institutes and to help young researchers launch their scholarly careers and enable them to carry their research forward.

July 2006: We are pleased to announce that Professor John F. Corrigan has been selected for a Faculty Scholar Award. These prestigious awards were established to provide special recognition to a faculty member who has maintained an outstanding record in teaching and research and who is at a critical point in his or her career. Congratulations John!

July 2006: In September 2005, the Department of Chemistry, along with the Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Faculty of Science, secured funding for a new addition to the building (~45,000 sq ft). The addition will be nestled between the Chemistry Building and the Biological and Geological Building, uphill from the Chemistry loading dock. This much needed and long-awaited space will house new first year undergraduate chemistry (~5,500 sq ft) and physics (~7,200 sq ft) laboratories and the associated support space, offices for the ChemClub and the Science Student's Council, the NMR Facility (~1900 sq ft) and research labs with a Materials Science focus (~11,200 sq ft). With the three newly renovated synthetic labs and offices on the second floor of the Biological and Geological Sciences building (scheduled for completion in January 2007), the Department of Chemistry will, at long last, have space relief for our rapidly growing research and teaching programs! The initial designs for the Materials Science Addition are now finished; construction is expected to start in October 2006 and be completed by Spring 2008. We look forward to inviting you to the Grand Opening of the new labs! To read more about new construction and renovations on campus, see this story in Western News