Chloe Ramsperger has been named one of the Fall 2021 Undergraduates of the Quarter, and we couldn’t be more thrilled.  Chloe grew up in Redlands, California, where she attended Redlands High School, home of the Terriers.

When asked why Chloe chose Chemistry, she said, “Ever since I was young, I have had a growing passion for forensic science. Having access to television, I would constantly watch crime shows such as Crime Scene Investigation and Criminal Minds, wishing I was the investigator or the forensic scientist solving the crime. I never thought that wish could become my reality. With my growing interest in forensic science, I entered Oregon State University (OSU) as a chemistry major with an option in forensics. At the height of the Coronavirus pandemic, financial hardships forced me to take a step back from research, so I started working at a dental office. While working there, I realized how much I missed doing research and that chemistry was something that brought me joy and it was something I could always look forward to. At that moment I quickly realized the medical field is not where I wanted my career to be, leading me to believe I should be and want to pursue a Ph.D. in chemistry.

During her junior year of high school, her uncle flew her up to Oregon to visit universities in the Pacific Northwest. While visiting OSU, she fell in love with the campus, and she knew it would allow for innovation and give her the best education in comparison to other schools.  Her decision was made.

She is currently doing research in Dr. Kyriakos Stylianou‘s Materials Discovery Lab (MaD Lab), which has considerable expertise in the synthesis and characterization of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs). Over the summer, Chloe received the Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) fellowship, by which she began researching numerous organic transformations that could benefit from the use of a heterogenous catalysis. While looking at the hydrocyanation for the conversion of alkenes to nitriles, she stumbled upon the Strecker synthesis for amino acids. She found a considerable amount of published research on this one-pot synthesis, but nothing seemed to involve the use of a MOF exhibiting strong Brønsted acidity that does not compromise the framework, be an environmentally friendly synthetic route, and be cost effective. While this work is still in its early steps, this preliminary work has demonstrated a successful conversion and high percent yield using a MOF with Brønsted acid sites. These preliminary results were used as the basis for the development of the project proposed for the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program.

Chloe was at a poster presentation session for careers in chemistry, Dr. Rich Carter asked her where she saw herself in the future, to which she answered, “a forensic odontologist”. At that point he told her about Dr. Dipankar Koley’s research group, in which they used electrochemical techniques to fabricate sensors and different polymers to study dental plaque biofilms and restorative dental materials. She immediately sought out a research position in his lab because she knew she would gain valuable experience to prepare her for graduate school and become an independent researcher and mentor.

After graduation, Chloe hopes to work in industry for the remainder of the 2021-2022 school year then move onto graduate school to pursue a Ph.D. in Organic chemistry.

Outside of school Chloe loves to rock climb, hike, play volleyball, and listen to music.

In closing, Chloe stated, “though my academic career seems to be entrenched, by copious opportunities I have received, it could not have been done without the academic support from my mentors and encouragement from my parents. My undergraduate career at Oregon State University has solidified my ambition to become an educator, mentor, and communicator to transform chemistry.”

Elias “Eli” Henderson has been named one of the Fall 2021 Undergraduates of the Quarter and we couldn’t be prouder.         

Eli was born and raised in Eugene, Oregon, and graduated from South Eugene High School, home of the Axe.  He stated that he likes all science, but chemistry is, “so cool with so many different applications that it seems like a good place to begin.”  When asked why he chose OSU, Eli said it was mostly a financial decision.  “I didn’t want to pay out of state tuition and OSU has a good science program so I knew it would be a good fit.”

Eli said he wanted to get into doing science that wasn’t in the form of the normal courses. He wanted to be able to have a goal for some project that he could study on his own time.  To that end, Eli is currently researching with Marilyn Mackiewicz in the Mack Lab. The Mack Lab focuses on making metallic based nanoparticles for biomedical applications.  Eli works specifically with Nickel. “I have been working on making Nickel nanoparticles that are suspended in water.

While he’s not 100% sure what his plans are post-graduation, he is currently working towards a focus in education, and contemplating getting a masters on his way to a teaching license to teach high school.

Outside school, Eli likes to rock climb and explore Corvallis. When he’s exploring, he likes to find the small stores around town and see what is going on.

His favorite book is The End of Boys by Peter Hofmeister, a book he says he’s just finished re-reading. The author was his English teach in high school, and is about the author’s life growing up in Eugene. “It feels very familiar to me,” Eli says.  His favorite food is the curry at Thai Chili. He likes to go in on Fridays, saying it’s a good way to wrap up the week.

Eli says he’s really appreciative of this opportunity, and we’re so happy to be able to provide it for him. 

Karlie Wiese has been named one of the Spring 2021 Undergraduates of the Quarter, and we couldn’t be prouder of her.

Karlie grew up in the Rogue Valley in Southern Oregon.  She attended Phoenix High School, home of the Pirates.  She originally came to OSU with the intent to major in Nutrition with the Dietetics option to become a Dietitian. OSU is the only school in Oregon that has a dietetics program.

Karlie actually really disliked chemistry when she was in high school (long, long ago in 2007, she says) and dropped the class after the first quarter. She procrastinated as long as she could before she started her chemistry courses for Nutrition. She ended up loving chemistry so much that she was always eager to dive into her chemistry reading and homework. Additionally, she was working as a tutor and really enjoyed sharing her chemistry knowledge with other students and helping them better understand the material. She decided it was time to make a big change (her senior year!) and switch from Nutrition to Chemistry with an education focus.

She’s not currently performing any research, but may help conduct some research in chemistry education over the next year, and has been toying with the idea of getting into a research lab.  She has been working as a TA for the 23x Gen Chem series for the past couple of years now. Karlie reports absolutely love it and says it has really helped to solidify her decision to go into teaching chemistry. Something else that might be mildly interesting to note is that she didn’t start college until about 9 years after finishing high school, and she’ll be 32 when she finishes her bachelor’s degree.  After she finishes her bachelor’s, she says, she’ll move on to grad school. She’s still figuring out if she wants to pursue a Master’s in Science Education or go for Chemistry. After grad school, her plan is to teach Chemistry at a high school, or possibly college.

Karlie is a mom to a five-year-old, so free time outside of school has been virtually non-existent; however, she enjoys hiking with her family and just being in nature. She’s definitely looking forward to this summer as it’s the first summer in 16 years that she won’t be working or taking classes. Hopefully they’ll be able to make some camping trips and explore the state. They’ve all definitely been going a little stir-crazy during these pandemic times over the past year, so a bit of fun out of the house is long overdue!

She says it’s hard to pick one, but her favorite genres are sci-fi and nonfiction. If she has to pick one, she it’d have to be The Martian, by Andy Weir.

Karlie wanted to say, “thank you to all of the instructors for being so adaptable over the past year and working hard to ensure students could continue on with their education during these unusual times!”

We’re so proud of all our Undergraduates of the Quarter for their many accomplishments and wish Karlie the best of luck with all her future plans.

Karlie says her daughter loves to help her with her Chemistry homework.

Alice Lulich has been named one of the Spring 2021 Undergraduates of the Quarter and we couldn’t be happier.

Alice grew up in Bend, Oregon.  She attended North Medford High School, home of the Black Tornado.  She chose OSU due to its emphasis and opportunity for undergraduate research. The other universities she was looking at were missing that, and it was crucial to her. OSU has been a great fit for her, and she is pleased with her decision.  As far as research, she has been working in the Nyman Lab for the last two-ish years. She creates metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) using transition metals and then characterizes them. She can also find applications for the new MOFs she creates, such as capturing carbon dioxide gas or splitting water in a photocatalysis reactor. This utility can be applied to clean energy solutions for climate change. She got into the lab in the first term of freshman year. She wanted to do undergraduate research, and it had a significant impact on her college choice, so she got in as soon as possible!

When asked why Chemistry, she replied, “chemistry makes sense to me. I geek out about reactions and always put things in terms of chemistry. For example, when I listen to music, I’ll think about the gas particles vibrating to get the sound wave to my ears. Or, when I am making food, I think about the denaturing process. Chemistry excites me so much!”

Alice plans research as a career. She is currently interested in options like the national labs, but the thing she loves about chemistry is its applicability; “I don’t want to limit myself to thinking I can only do one thing with my degree.” She says she will have to go to grad school first, though, so her after-school career is still a ways off. However, she is excited at the prospect of grad school.

Outside of school, Alice loves hiking and being outdoors. When she has free time (which school and lab limit), she loves reading and cooking. She is a homebody and an introvert, but she loves to catch up with friends as well. There’s nothing better than a night with good friends and good music.   Her favorite book that she’s read recently is Educated by Tara Westover. She says “it’s  such a captivating read. It had me hooked for the whole thing. I would highly recommend it, but just be forewarned that it is a wild ride.”  Her favorite food is Thai Curry and Tomatoes.

Alice says she’s honored to be chosen as Undergraduate of the Quarter! “It feels rewarding to be recognized for the work I put into both school and my research.”  We’re proud to bestow this honor on students like Alice, and we wish her all the best of luck in the future.

Sophia (Jiani) Jiang has been named one of the Spring 2020 Undergraduates of the Quarter.

                  Sophia grew up in Shanghai, China and moved to Beaverton, Oregon with her family in December 2014. She attended Westview High School in Portland. Although chemistry at times can be difficult to learn, she decided to pursue it because it is fundamental to everything in the world.

                  Ultimately, Sophia decided to attend Oregon State because it is a research-based university with an incredible science program. Additionally, she believes Corvallis is one of the best college towns in the US and has many places for her to explore.

                  Sophia is a part of Dr. Vince Remcho’s research group working on a thin-layer chromatography experiment for remote learning. Her work is part of a bigger project called “Making Introductory Courses Real while Online (MICRO)” which is funded by Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

                  With the help of her advisor, Dr. Neal Sleszynski, Sophia was able to get involved in research. He was able to help Sophia get in contact with several professors from the chemistry and biochemistry department. After reading papers and talking with professors, she decided to join Dr. Remcho’s group because of her interest in microfluidics and its wide range of applications.

                  Aside from school and her work in research, Sophia enjoys hiking and playing fingerstyle guitar. Her favorite book is The Lord of the Rings.  One thing Sophia believes stands out about herself is she is a tough person and her perseverance helps her achieve her goals.

Sam Tanoeyadi has been named one of the Spring 2020 Undergraduates of the Quarter.

                  Sam grew up in a city called Bekasi, located in West Java, Indonesia where he attended Don Bosco III high school, a national-based curriculum school located in his hometown.

                  Sam wanted to pursue chemistry because in high school, he had difficulty mastering organic chemistry. In national chemistry competitions in his country, organic chemistry was the topic that was most challenging. This made him determined to master it both in practical lab work and in theoretical practices.

                  With plans of studying abroad in the United States, Oregon State became a clear choice when he saw the school represented in an international education abroad expo. Ultimately, Sam was determined to attend Oregon State after seeing the chemistry program in the College of Science.

                  During Sam’s undergraduate years at Oregon State, he was looking for an organic chemistry lab that could help him improve. With almost zero experience in his early undergraduate career, Dr. Taifo Mahmud accepted him as a lab member. Since then, Dr. Taifo Mahmud had become his PI.

                  Currently, Sam is performing research as a part of Dr. Taifo Mahmud laboratory in OSU Pharmaceutical Sciences. His research focuses on natural product isolation, organic synthesis and microbiology alongside biochemistry that all focuses on the medicinal chemistry theme.

                  With the help of his PI, Sam has been accepted into the graduate school of Oregon State University Pharmaceutical Sciences Department and is now in his first year of graduate school in Medicinal Chemistry track.

                  Aside from his work, Sam enjoys fishing and playing video games. Additionally, he enjoys reading chemistry-themed books, short stories, and comics. His favorite food is anything that includes strawberries. In the future, Sam hopes to travel to Korea or Japan to celebrate his accomplishments.

Derek Muensterman has been named one of the Winter 2020 Undergraduates of the Quarter.

Derek is originally from Bend, Oregon and attended Summit High School. After high school, Derek took a break between high school and college. Instead, he went into the cannabis business which exposed him to hydrocarbon extractions and different types of reactions. The information he obtained originated from an open source provided by a community which inspired his passion for chemistry.

While attending community college and working full time, Derek originally wanted to be an Environmental Science. However, with no real end goal yet in site, he began fulfilling the Baccalaureate Core requirements. His work in the cannabis business helped solidify his passion to pursue chemistry.

As an Oregon native, Derek looked at Oregon State and University of Oregon for research opportunities in their STEM programs, ultimately deciding on OSU. Beginning at the endophyte lab, Derek was able to get his first OSU lab position. Using a letter of recommendation from Jennifer Duringer, he was able to move into a more research focused group, getting in touch with Craig Marcus. At the end of the physical year, Marcus extended his info to different research labs, connecting him to Jennifer Fields.

Derek now works in a research lab with Jennifer Fields finding trace contaminants PFAS on suits. These traces are used to address preoccupational exposure to PFAS before workers are even exposed to it.

In his spare time, Derek enjoys snowboarding, fly fishing, and skateboarding. His favorite novel is One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey. Derek enjoys eating Thai or Southern food however, his favorite food depends on his mood!

After graduation, Derek plans on attending graduate school to earn a PhD. Although it took Derek a while to get his foot in the door for research, being involved has inspired him to be more motivated with chemistry, developing his passion. He urges those who would like to pursue research to keep pushing forward as OSU is an incredible school for it!

Rony Kaluda has been named one of the Winter 2020 Undergraduates of the Quarter.

Originally from Israel, Rony attended Sunset High School in Beaverton, Oregon where her passion for chemistry began. She found the experiments in her high school chemistry classes fun and blowing things up exciting. While Rony has always enjoyed science, these classes just seemed to make sense, leading her to believe it was a sign that she was most attracted to chemistry.

Rony wanted to stay in state and believed OSU was the best option to pursue chemistry and research opportunities. Neal Sleszynski reached out to Roni in her first term at OSU because she began her freshman year with 90 credits. He got her in touch with Claudia Maier to work in a research lab.

Rony applied for the SURE science program for the summer which was a proteomics based program. She is now working on projects looking at pesticide degradation in addition to pollen and phytochemcial stability in different plants. These projects all vary but include mass spectrometry.

In her spare time, Rony enjoys hiking, Tae Kwon Do, and reading her favorite book, Howl’s Moving Castle. Her favorite food is chocolate. After graduation, Rony hopes to become a graduate student in the Maier Lab seeking her Masters in Analytical Chemistry.

Conner Bailey has been named one of the Winter 2019 Undergraduates of the Quarter and we couldn’t be happier for him. Connor grew up in Beaverton Oregon just outside of Portland. He attended Southridge High School for all four years where he found his passion for chemistry through taking stem chemistry in school. His teacher was a chemical engineer before becoming a teacher so he was able to show the students a lot of analytical instruments which sparked his interest in analytical chemistry.

            Conner’s family has a long line of beaver’s from his brothers to his dad, beaver pride runs in his family. Conner was also drawn to Oregon State University due to the chemistry program and the things it has to offer.

Last summer Conner did research under Dr. Maier, he worked on the preliminary research of gangliosides. Through the research they were trying to find methods to separate the gangliosides so that they could get a full analysis of the compounds. Conner received the opportunity to do research through the university’s Summer Undergraduate Research Engagement program.

            Post-graduation Conner hopes to go to graduate school to pursue a PhD in chemistry. Currently he has been accepted into a PhD program at Washington State University.

            Outside of school you can find Conner either kicking a ball around on the soccer field or working on has magic trick skills. Conner has been a magician since middle school, maybe through his degree Conner will be able to hone his magic skills.

            Students like Conner are a huge part of what makes our Department so great.  We wish him well in the future, and cannot wait to see what his next big adventure is.

Dillon Crook has been named one of the Winter 2019 Undergraduates of the Quarter and we couldn’t be happier for him. Dillon grew up in St. Helens Oregon just 30 miles north of Portland in an old lumber and paper mill town. He attended St. Helens High School for all four years and went on to Portland Community College to discover his passion in life and get his Associate of Arts.

Dillon modeling has fabulous Holiday suit for the Chemistry office staff.

            Dillon’s father earned his Master’s in Education here at Oregon State which was one of the driving factors for him to attend school here. In addition, Dillon is a sixth generation Willamette valley resident, furthering his connection to the University. Coming to OSU allowed Dillon to grow his passion for chemistry and education.

For the last three years Dillon has been doing research under Dr. Subramanian, he works on exotic crystal structure analysis of solid oxides; specifically methods using solid state synthesis. As well as characterization and instrumental techniques related to the research. His path to research started with the careers in chemistry course (CH 220) and a job shadow with one of Dr. Subramanian’s graduate students, Sarah Synnestvedt. After the job shadow Dillon become fascinated with Dr. Subramanian’s research and started working under Sarah until she graduated in 2017 with her masters, when he then transitioned to working with Joseph Tang.

            Post-graduation Dillon hopes to teach abroad in Macaw, China for a term, through this experience Dillon hopes to be able to further is career in teaching chemistry or some other physical science at the middle or high school level.  He has already made strides in reaching his goal by being an undergraduate teaching assistant for the general chemistry for non-science major’s courses for the past year.

            Outside of school Dillon likes eating Tacos and enjoying nature. He and his family have traveled across the United States and have visited places such as Mount Rushmore, the Grand Canyon, and many other national parks.             Students like Dillon are a huge part of what makes our Department so great.  We wish him well in the future, and cannot wait to see what his next big adventure is.