Prado, J. Rachel


Contact Information


Short Biography

Dr. J. Rachel Prado is joining UCLA as the 2017 Cram Teacher-Scholar. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and continued at UAB for her Ph.D. in Chemistry. In addition to research on the thermodynamic and kinetic changes that nanoconfinement has on a gel-sol transition, she received teaching certificates from UAB’s Center for Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning.


Dr. Prado attended the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) for her undergraduate studies. As a freshman in the Chemistry Fellows Program, she taught general chemistry labs, continuing through as a peer-leader for organic chemistry recitations. In her sophomore year, Dr. Prado began her undergraduate research in Dr. Sergey Vyazovkin’s group. In 2012, she graduated summa cum laude and with honors, including the UAB ACS Undergraduate Chemistry student award, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry.

Following graduation, Dr. Prado continued her studies in the Vyazovkin Lab as a graduate student at UAB. Her research encompassed the thermodynamic and kinetic effects of solid surfaces and nanoconfinement on the gel-sol phase transition of gelatin. She obtained three teaching certificates (Associate, Practitioner, and Scholar) through UAB’s Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL), which culminated in a Teaching-as-Research project on developing dimensional analysis laboratory activities for non-major chemistry students. Dr. Prado also taught multiple chemistry courses, laboratories, as well as participated in several outreach organizations including: Ask-A-Scientist National Non-profit Organization, ACS Science Coaches, Girls in Science and Engineering Day at UAB, and Outstanding Women in Science Seminar Series. After being awarded her Ph.D. in Chemistry, she joined UCLA as the 2017 Cram Teacher-Scholar teaching Chem 14C and conducting research in the Bouchard Lab.

Honors & Awards

  • Innovations in Teaching (UAB)
  • ICTAC Student Poster Winner
  • NATAS Travel Grant 2015 & 2016
  • Graduate Student Research Days Winner (UAB) Undergraduate Chemistry Student of the Year (UAB) Undergraduate Student ACS Analytical Chemistry Award (UAB)


  • Prado, J. R., Chen, J., Kharlampieva, E. and Vyazovkin, S. Melting of gelatin gels confined to silica nanopores. Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2016, DOI: 10.1039/C6CP03339C (featured on the cover)
  • Prado, J. R. and Vyazovkin, S. Melting of Gelatin Gels Containing Laponite, Montmorillonite, and Chitosan Particles. Macromol. Chem. Phys. 2014, 215, 867–872.
  • Prado, J. R. and Vyazovkin, S. Activation Energies of Water Vaporization from the Bulk and from Laponite, Montmorillonite, and Chitosan Powders. Thermochimica Acta 2011, 524, 197– 201.
  • Publications