Teacher-Scholar News

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This summer we welcome our newest Teacher-Scholar Huiling Shao and we bid farewell to former Teacher-Scholars Marlius Castillo and Anish Nag.

Our Teacher-Scholar program allows postdoctoral scholars to experience research and teaching at the same time as a way to prepare them for future faculty or research positions.

“We commend Marlius and Anish for their extraordinary teaching and research during their time at UCLA,” said Department Chair Neil Garg. “I wish them both the very best in what I know is a very bright future.”

Shao%2C%20Huiling Square 0Dr. Huiling Shao (2021-2022 Cram Teacher-Scholar, Houk group) joined our Teacher-Scholar Instructional faculty in July 2021. She conducts research in Professor Ken Houk’s group and, starting in the Fall of 2021 she will teach Chem 20A (Chemical Structure). Huiling received her bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of Richmond in 2014. She then went on to graduate school at the University of Pittsburgh, where she conducted computational chemistry research with Professor Peng Liu, studying reaction mechanisms in the field of transition metal catalysis. After receiving her Ph.D. in chemistry in 2019, Huiling went on to the University of Minnesota as a postdoctoral research associate. During her two years as a postdoctoral researcher with Professor Christopher Cramer, she conducted computational studies to design catalysts for sustainable polymer and study metal-organic framework catalysts. 

Castillo%2CMarlius 2019 300Dr. Marlius Castillo (2019-2021 Cram Teacher-Scholar, García-Garibay group) will begin a visiting instructor position in the Department of Chemistry and Physics at the Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) in August 2021. Marlius is excited about FGCU’s fast-growing focus on research and mission for personalized student-centered learning. She is also happy to be closer to family and friends in Florida. Marlius joined our Teacher-Scholar Instructional faculty in August 2019 and conducted postdoctoral research in the laboratory of Professor Miguel García-Garibay, studying synthesis and applications of fluorescent molecules. She also taught Structures of Organic Molecules (Chemistry 14C).

Nag%2BAnish%2B2019 300Dr. Anish Nag (2019-2021 Boyer Teacher-Scholar, Gelbart group) will start a new position as Process Development Scientist-Drug Product Technology at Amgen in Thousand Oaks in August 2021. His position is within the pre-pivotal stage manufacturing group and involves process optimization of drug candidates. A UCLA alumnus, Anish received his M.S. degree (2015) and Ph.D. degree (2019) in chemistry under the supervision of Prof. Catherine F. Clarke. He joined our Teacher-Scholar Instructional faculty in August 2019 and conducted postdoctoral research in the laboratory of Professor William Gelbart, studying viruses and virus like particles (VLPs) in novel therapeutics. He also taught Organic Reactions (Chemistry 14D). Earlier this year, Anish received the department’s prestigious Hanson-Dow Award for Excellence in Teaching.  

Our 2020-21 Teacher-Scholar Instructors, Dr. Kristopher Barr (2020-21 Libby Teacher-Scholar, P. Weiss group) and Dr. Daniel Nasrallah (2020-21 Donald J. Cram Teacher-Scholar, Garg group) will continue to teach undergraduate chemistry and biochemistry courses and conduct research in the 2021-22 academic year.

About the Boyer/Cram/Libby Teacher-Scholar Program

The Teacher-Scholar positions honor UCLA Chemistry & Biochemistry Department Nobel Laureates Paul D. Boyer, Donald J. Cram, and Willard F. Libby, and recognize their many contributions to the advancement of chemistry and biochemistry. Boyer/Cram/Libby Teacher-Scholars are expected to serve for three years, with the initial appointment for one year, plus the possibility of renewal annually. They are expected to teach three one-quarter undergraduate chemistry or biochemistry courses during a given academic year and conduct postdoctoral research with a sponsoring faculty member in the UCLA Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry. 

About our Former Teacher-Scholars

Our Teacher-Scholars are some of the best and brightest teachers and researchers in their fields and, as much as we are sad to bid them farewell, we know they will go on to make important contributions to world.

Dr. Agape Awad (2018-20 Paul D. Boyer Teacher-Scholar, C. Clarke group) In June 2020, Awad started a position as Lead Scientist at the Quality Biology Laboratory at Edwards Lifesciences in Irvine, CA where she is developing new methods that are regulatory and FDA compliant to validate cardiovascular medical devices for patient therapy. 

Dr. Christian Beren (2018-20 Willard F. Libby Teacher-Scholar, Gelbart/Knobler group) in August 2020, Beren started a position as an assistant teaching professor at the Colorado School of Mines in Chemistry. At Mines, Christian teaches a combination of general chemistry, physical chemistry and biochemistry/biophysics courses. 

Dr. Shuming Chen (2016-2019 Cram Teacher-Scholar, Houk group) July 2020, Chen accepted a position as Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Oberlin College in Ohio. 

Dr. Zhao Li (our first 2016-2019 Libby Teacher-Scholar, Lin group) is a visiting professor of chemistry at Pomona College. 

Dr. Sharon Neufeldt (our first 2013-2016 Cram Postdoctoral Teacher-Scholar, Houk group) is an assistant professor of chemistry at Montana State University.  

Dr. Rachel Prado (2017-2019 Cram Teacher-Scholar, Bouchard group) In 2019, Prado returned to her home state of Alabama to accept an organic chemistry and biochemistry lecturer position at Auburn University.

Dr. Roshini Ramachandran (2017-2019 Boyer Teacher-Scholar, Spokoyny group) is the Assistant Director of Curricular Initiatives at UCLA’s Center for the Advancement of Teaching. She continues to teach undergraduate courses for the department.

Dr. Jacquelin Kammeyer Woodford (our first 2016-2019 Boyer Teacher-Scholar, Maynard group) is a Lecturer in Chemistry at Wellesley College. 

Penny Jennings, UCLA Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, penny@chem.ucla.edu