This guide for faculty is the first in a suite of resources to help you in supporting international students, both inside and outside the classroom.

On Thursday, May 22, 2014, panel sessions entitled “Tips for working with International Students in your Classroom” and  “Tips for working with International Students in Advising” will be held at the Center for Teaching and Learning’s Spring Symposium. [Details regarding the Symposium will appear on the CTL web site as they become available:]

If you have questions about the Toolkit, please contact You may view an electronic version of this faculty guide at

College of Science Chemistry Professor Mas Subramanian will discuss the discovery of new pigments with energy-saving applications in the 2014 F.A. Gilfillan Memorial Lecture May 6 at 6:15 pm at the LaSells Stewart Center. Subramanian is the 2013 recipient of the F.A. Gilfillan Award for Distinguished Scholarship in Science recognizing College of Science faculty who have a record of distinguished scholarship and scientific accomplishments.

Undergraduate of the Quarter - Winter 2014
Undergraduate of the Quarter – Winter 2014

Chadd Armstrong has been selected as one of our Undergrads of the Quarter for Fall 2013.  Chadd is a non-traditional student who returned to school after the 2008 economic downturn. Having moved around the Pacific Northwest growing up, he graduated from Lebanon Union High before following a professional career in other states. Embarking initially at LBCC seeking a diagnostics imaging certificate, his General Chemistry Instructor there (Ron Backus) inspired him – “Chemistry is the physics of the small.”  He went on to take Organic Chemistry from Brigid Backus who further motivated him to pursue a higher level of education.  Since transferring to OSU, Chadd states that he has especially enjoyed KC Walsh in Physics and Claudia Maier in Chemistry.  Professor Maier’s CH 422 course was “very clear, precise” and “methodical.” He has also enjoyed ATS 320 “Man’s Impact on Climate” which he describes as a very interesting and worthwhile class.  He became involved in research, while still at LBCC, during a summer research fellowship at Trillium Fiber Fuels where became acquainted with Professor & Reser Faculty Scholar Vince Remcho (one of the four co-founders of this company). While at OSU, Chadd has been conducting research in Professor Remcho’s lab. Research provides Chadd with that day to day exposure to real-world chemistry problems that helps to tie everything together.  He enjoys working with grad students because the experience has helped grow his confidence in his own abilities. From his prior work experiences, he has brought more computer programming into the Remcho lab.  Graduating this June, he will have been fortunate enough, from scholarships and fellowships, to finish without having taken on any debt.  After graduation, he plans to go on to Grad School to get a PhD in Chemistry on the west coast.  He really enjoys research in applied fields and his long term goal is to work in a national lab or a university where he can conduct research and teach.  In his free time, Chadd likes to travel, visiting family and friends, all of who are very important to him.

Chadd describes OSU as a “fantastic school” and he feels very invested here.  We are so grateful to have talented students like Chadd as Chemistry majors and we want to congratulate him on his successes.  It is future alumni like Chadd that make OSU Chemistry an amazing place!

Guest Bloggers: Kim Thackray & Mike Lerner

Have you looked around and noticed that more and more items are powered by lithium ion batteries?  All cell phones and laptops use lithium ion batteries, and automobiles and even ships are moving toward this technology.  Advances in technology are making these batteries (and the products they power) smaller, lighter, and longer-lasting—but what happens to the batteries once they have outlived their usefulness?

Dr. Sloop battery researcher
Dr. Sloop enjoys football too.

The current technology for handling used batteries follows 2 tracks:  batteries are either ground up in order to extract the expensive components (nickel, cobalt), or…they go to the landfill.  Good earth stewardship demands a better, lower-energy alternative.  Dr. Steve Sloop (OSU, 1996), founder of OnTo Technology, is in the forefront of this field, helping to change the battery waste flow into a battery resource flow.

Working closely with researchers and students at Willamette University and OSU, OnTo Technology is developing direct recycling processes that entail disassembling used batteries into their reusable components, ensuring component quality, and then introducing these components back into the battery manufacturing process.  The associated recovery technologies, which must continually evolve as lithium-ion battery technology evolves, use much less energy and create much less waste than current recycling methods.  Although their new procedures are somewhat more labor-intensive, Steve calculates they use 1/62 as much energy (based on the Hess cycle calculation for smelting, boiling, and purifying the valuable components).  If the energy used to originally extract these materials from the earth is included, the savings are even greater.

OnTo Technology came into being as a company in 2004, starting with a loan from the Oregon Department of Energy.  This loan allowed Steve to hire a staff and to purchase equipment for pilot-plant scale research.  A battery recall by Apple provided the raw materials required for initial testing.  Interestingly, one of the first revenue streams for this fledgling company was reselling perfectly functional batteries (obtained in the recall but not on the recall list) on eBay.  Since that time, OnTo Technology has largely moved away from the small consumer electronics batteries to work with automobile and ship batteries; a grant from the US Department of Energy, Vehicles Division supports this newer focus.

When asked about the business model for his company, Steve explains that OnTo Technologies is not planning to become a battery manufacturer.  Instead, their goal is to license battery recycling technology to a manufacturing partner; currently they are working with XALT, a major US based manufacturer of large format batteries for cars and boats, and other manufacturers as well.  The scientists at OnTo are working to keep up with rapidly evolving battery technologies, in order to keep their partners in the forefront.  Their main product is knowledge and expertise in this exciting field.

Mike Lerner researches batteries full time at OSU
OSU’s Mike Lerner

In addition, OnTo works with OSU Chemistry’s Dr. Mike Lerner and his group to characterize material structures and compositions at different points in the recycling process. This information helps guide OnTo’s process development.  Collaborating for several years now on battery chemistry, Dr. Lerner and Dr. Sloop met 20 years ago when Steve was a doctoral student working with Mike.

Battery companies are not only interested in Steve’s ideas in order to save money on minerals.  There is momentum in local and state governments to require battery recycling, in order to reduce the toxic load in landfills; California already has such laws.  In addition, the marketing value of being considered a “green” manufacturer cannot be overstated.  Steve believes recycling is inevitable; he is leading the way in developing the best way to do it.

Many challenges remain; some manufacturers still think it is crazy to consider processes that are so labor intensive when it is easier/cheaper to grind and smelt, or discard, old batteries.  In the future, an automated disassembly line may reduce the required labor.  Right now, the scientists at OnTo Technologies continue to work on these challenges.

Guest Blogger: Mike Lerner

Dr. Lerner's booth before the other staffers arrived.  (photo courtesy of Mike Lerner)
Dr. Lerner’s booth before the other staffers arrived. (photo courtesy of Mike Lerner)

I attended the 31st International Battery Seminars in March. One the one hand, I presented a short review of current academic research on graphene in energy storage applications. My conclusions were that “gen-2” graphenes, with tailored functional edges and basal surfaces, present a possible route towards dense, electrically and thermally conductive composite hierarchical structures for battery or supercapacitor electrodes. And also that this is no secret, there is a lot of research activity ongoing all over the globe.

On the other hand, I manned an OSU exhibitor booth extolling the virtues of our soon-to-be-offered online course called “Chemistry and Materials of Batteries and Supercapacitors”.  There was an encouraging level of interest from large and small companies, governmental agencies, and other academics. I hope we’ll get a mix of students from these sources; among other advantages it will make for interesting class discussions.

Finally, the conference itself was fantastic. One could feel, almost palpably, the pull from industry for better batteries to meet the demands of the electric vehicle and smart grid markets. At the same time, we heard from many contributors that the existing technology and its logical extensions will not likely get us there — that major and fundamental advances in materials and chemistry are needed. What does this all mean? For one thing, it’s a very good time to be a battery chemist!

Do you know someone who’s a hero here at OSU because of the extra effort that they put forth or the extra moment they take to make your day pleasant?  Here’s a great way to celebrate them.  Professional Faculty Leadership Association is always seeking nominations for “Our Heroes” awards.  Neither you or the nominated individual need to be members.   Build up your karma bank by celebrating the heroes that help us every day.



The OSU Women’s Center is pleased to issue this call for nominations for the 2014 OSU Women Center’s Women of Achievement Awards.  These awards honor the commitment to and contributions of women whose work has touched the lives of students, and colleagues. You are especially encouraged to consider nominating those who have shown themselves to be dedicated to improving the lives of other women, but whose work may sometimes go unnoticed, unrecognized, or unrewarded.

Please help us identify women in your colleges, departments, classrooms, organizations and committees by distributing this form to anyone interested in making a nomination.  With the exception of those who have received the award in the past, all are eligible.

For a list of past WOA recipients, click here

We invite you to not only consider nominating a worthy individual but hope that you will plan to attend this year’s award ceremony in the Memorial Union Lounge on May 19, 2014!

Nomination Criteria

1.     The nominee may not have received the award in the past.

2.     The nominee must be a member of the OSU community or a community partner.

3.     Nominees should:

a.      have a demonstrated commitment to equality, and dedication to furthering the lives of women, especially those of OSU students.

b.     be engaged in work that has positively affected the lives of women.

c.      have served as a role model in the lives of girls and/or women.

4.     The nominee must not be a current member of the OSU Women’s Center Advisory Board.

click here for a list of the 2013-2014 Advisory Board members

Nomination packets containing the following information will be considered:

1.     Primary nominator’s letter containing:

a.      Name, address, phone, and email of nominator

b.     Relationship to nominee

c.      Curriculum vita or resume with contact information of the woman being nominated

d.     A nomination letter with specific examples of the nominee’s actions and accomplishments:

i.     demonstrated commitment to equality, and dedication to furthering the lives of women, especially those of OSU students.

ii.     engagement in work that has positively affected the lives of women.

iii.     served as a role model in the lives of OSU girls and/or women.

2.     Additional letters of support:

a.      One but no more than two additional letters beyond that of the primary nominator:

i.     Each letter should clearly address, with specific examples, the criteria and qualifications about which the letter writer has direct knowledge (see 1.d above).

ii.     Each letter must not exceed 2 pages (single space-#12 font-1” margins)

b.     Primary nominator should

i.     forward a copy of the award criteria to letter writers

ii.     remind letter writers that strong nominations will exemplify the nominee’s accomplishments in accordance with award criteria.

Please email nomination packets IN FULL to (Attention WOAC). It is the responsibility of the primary nominator to make sure that the packet is complete. Incomplete packets will not be considered. Deadline to receive application packets is 9 am on April 7th, 2014. 

All questions may be emailed to (Attention WOAC)

14 March 2014

To the OSU Community:

President Ray and I are pleased to share with you that OSU Alumni, Dr. Ann A. Kiessling will be our 2014 Commencement Speaker and Honorary Doctorate recipient.

Dr. Kiessling is the director of the Bedford Stem Cell Research Foundation and a leader in both stem cell research and reproductive biology.  After receiving her Ph.D. at OSU in Biochemistry and Biophysics, Dr. Kiessling held a faculty appointment at OHSU and then joined the faculty of Harvard University in 1985.  There she specialized in obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive biology, and worked with the Department of Surgery.

Dr. Kiessling is noted for her discovery of reverse transcriptase activity in normal human cells.   This discovery spearheaded the importance of naturally occurring retrovirus sequences in human genes, now thought to be important to the genetic plasticity involved in human evolution and biology.  In the early 1990’s she pioneered reproductive options for couples with the HIV diseases and Hepatitis C.  The techniques she developed led to successful births of 121 children free of those diseases.

Dr. Kiessling’s book, “Human Embryonic Stem Cells: An Introduction to the Science and Therapeutic Potential”, published in 2003 and released in 2006, is the first textbook on the topic.  In addition, she’s published more than 100 scientific papers and has given more than 60 lectures to audiences around the world.

We are honored that Dr. Kiessling will give our commencement address during the 2014 OSU graduation ceremony.


Sabah Randhawa, Provost and Executive Vice President(reprinted from University Wide email) 

We are asking your assistance in forwarding this message to inform students and faculty in your department of these outstanding fellowship opportunities.  More detailed information and an online application can be found at

The National Research Council of the National Academies sponsors a number of awards for graduate, postdoctoral and senior researchers at participating federal laboratories and affiliated institutions. These awards include generous stipends ranging from $45,000 – $80,000 per year for recent Ph.D. recipients, and higher for additional experience.  Graduate entry level stipends begin at $30,000.  These awards provide the opportunity for recipients to do independent research in some of the best-equipped and staffed laboratories in the U.S.  Research opportunities are open to U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and for some of the laboratories, foreign nationals.

Detailed program information, including online applications, instructions on how to apply, and a list of participating laboratories, are available on the NRC Research Associateship Programs Web site (see link above).

Questions should be directed to the NRC at 202-334-2760 (phone) or

There are four annual review cycles.

Review Cycle:  May; Opens March 1; Closes May 1

Review Cycle:  August; Opens June 1; Closes August 1

Review Cycle:  November; Opens September 1; Closes November 1

Review Cycle:  February; Opens December 1; Closes February 1

Applicants should contact prospective Adviser(s) at the lab(s) prior to the application deadline to discuss their research interests and funding opportunities.