2023 Letter from the Chair

Dear Alumni and Friends, 


We are enjoying a beautiful autumn season in Bloomington. We had spectacular colors a few weeks ago. Now the leaves have fallen and the air is cool and crisp as we prepare to wrap up another exciting semester.  

Our students are making exciting progress in their careers. This year, we awarded degrees to 125 outstanding students: 35 PhD, 10 Master’s, and 80 Bachelor’s degrees. We continue to analyze student outcomes following our program to improve the training that we offer and find that the majority of our students are well-placed in STEM careers. With a strong foundation of training at IU Chemistry, our graduates are going on to have significant impact in science, technology, health, and other fields. 

We are very grateful for your support of our Department. Thanks to our generous donors, the Department awarded 25 graduate student fellowships and 30 graduate student awards this year. We also awarded $154,500 to 71 undergraduate students through 30 scholarship funds. Those awards included support for 22 undergraduate students to conduct research in chemistry labs during the summer. The American Chemical Society National Meeting was held in Indianapolis in March. Thanks to your generous support through our Friends of Chemistry fund, the Department awarded grants to 99 of our graduate students to help them attend that conference (we did not turn down any applications). 

During this academic year, we are conducting a fundraising drive with the goal to raise $150,000 for graduate student support awards. These awards provide additional financial support to our students during their advanced training at IU and help attract top talent to our Department. If you are able to do so, please consider contributing toward this goal with a donation to our Chemistry Graduate Fellowship fund or, if you would prefer, I would be happy to discuss other mechanisms to support our graduate or undergraduate students. Please do not hesitate to reach out (812-855-2268 or chemchr@indiana.edu).  

The American Chemical Society has granted a National Historic Chemical Landmark to Indiana University. The Landmark plaque will be dedicated and placed at the Chemistry building on April 4, 2024 in recognition of the development of the stannous fluoride chemistry that led to the commercialization of Crest toothpaste. Our Department will celebrate this occasion with a day-long scientific symposium, to which you are invited (click here for more information). Please join us for this special event, which will be presided over by 2024 ACS President Mary Carroll, an alumna of our Department. 

We have a lot of exciting developments going on in the Department. Two new tenure-track faculty joined our Department this year. Alex Georgescu studies and designs the electronic structure of materials and molecules. Ricardo Vazquez uses time-resolved spectroscopy and electrochemistry to study organic conjugated molecules. We have newly renovated labs for Professors Bloch, Goicoechea, and Smith. A new electron microscope for material characterization is being installed.  

Please see our website to learn more about these events and other exciting news in the Department, including upcoming events. We would also be delighted to add news about you, so please reach out with any special achievements that you would like to share! 

We send our greetings from Bloomington with best wishes for the upcoming holiday season and New Year. We are so grateful for your ongoing support of our students and programs. 

Best regards, 

Steve Tait 

Professor and Chair