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Three third-year Department of Chemistry graduate students took top presentation honors at this year's 10th annual Graduate Student Research Symposium. This year's "Beaker and Bunsen" award winners are Joshua Speros, Bess Vlaisavljevich, and Christopher "Kit" Zall. Each received a $600 travel grant.
Generous support of the travel grants was provided by Karen Schultz (Switeck), Ph.D., who earned her doctorate in 2006 under the tutelage of Professor Marc Hillmyer, and her employer, Johnson & Johnson.
Thirty-five third-year graduate students participated in the 10th Annual Graduate Student Research Symposium, which was conducted, Tuesday, May 17. This year's participants included Karen Beckman, Evgeny Beletskiy, Darren Ceckanowicz, Mohammadhasan "Hadi" Dinpajooh, Yuanyan Gu, Diane Johnson, Brynna Jones, Kyle Kalstabakken, Donghyuk Kim, Wei Li, Benjamin Manning, Kathryn McGarry, Audrey Meyer, Deanna Miller, Kaustubh Mote, Dawen Niu, Walter Partlo, Emilty Pelton, Nicholas Petkovich, Tom Pundsack, Yuqiang Qian, Brian Radak, Naveen Rondla, Joshua Speros, Thane Taylor, Jacqui Tehranchi, Rajan Vatassery, Bess Vlaisavljevich, Kelly Volp, Yen-Chih Wang, Patrick Willoughby, Jing Yang, Ke Yang, Christopher Zell, and Can Zhou.
Judges for the symposium were Assistant Professor Christopher Douglas, Professor Laura Gagliardi, Assistant Professor Andrew Harned, Assistant Professor Connie Lu, and Associate Professor Natalia Tretyakova. This year's distinguished judges were George Bodem, Ph.D., who obtained three degrees from the University of Minnesota—a bachelor's degree in chemistry in 1962, a master's degree in 1972, and doctorate in chemistry in 1976; Kristi A. Fjare, Ph.D., who graduated from St. Olaf College with a bachelor's degree in chemistry in 1979, and a doctorate in inorganic chemistry from the University of Minnesota in 1983; Clayton V. McNeff, Ph.D., who received his bachelor's degree from Augsburg College in 1991, and his doctorate in analytical chemistry from the University of Minnesota in 1996; and Drew Williams, Ph.D., who received his bachelor's degree in chemistry from Colgate University and his doctorate in polymer science and engineering from the University of Massachusetts.
This year's 10th Annual Graduate Student Research Symposium Committee members were Assistant Professor Christopher Douglas, Professor Jiali Gao, Communications Coordinator Eileen Harvala, and Assistant to the Chair Christine Lundby. Technology support was provided by Webmaster Eric Schulz and Information Technology Professional Mike Casey.
Pictured, from left, are symposium winners Christopher "Kit" Zall, Bess Vlaisavljevich, and Joshua Speros.