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November 2017

Department Head Martin Gruebele sitting at his desk 
Martin Gruebele 

Greetings from the Department Head

Here on campus we are in the midst of a vibrant autumn. As fall break and Thanksgiving approach, we are grateful for the loyal partnership of our alumni and friends.

We are a rich and diverse community, and we have good reasons to be proud of our many individual and collective accomplishments.




 a student eating jackfruit in Costa Rica

¡Pura Química!

Eleven Illinois students participated in the first Department of Chemistry study abroad program to Costa Rica last summer for Chem 492 Special Topics: Natural Products Research.

The students were led by José Andino Martinez, a lecturer in the Department of Chemistry.

Read more>>

 3 research artwork posters on a grey wall at Willard Airport

Research art on display at Willard Airport

Visitors to Champaign-Urbana’s Willard Airport can now enjoy a display of research art related to the chemical sciences at Illinois.

The project, which features images submitted by students, faculty, and research staff, is a collaboration between the School of Chemical Sciences, the Department of Chemistry, and the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.


 headshot of Professor Cathy Murphy

Research spotlight: Cathy Murphy

Professor Cathy Murphy (BS, ’86) joined the Illinois faculty in 2009 and was invested as the Larry R. Faulkner Endowed Chair in Chemistry earlier this year.

In this 3-minute video, she gives us a glimpse into her team’s research on the fabrication of silver and gold nanoparticles.



 group of alumni and faculty at a reception in the lobby of the Alice Campbell Alumni Center in Urbana, IL

How we celebrated 150 years

On October 6-7, we celebrated our sesquicentennial with 150 alumni, faculty, staff, and guests—an appropriate number for a commemoration of 150 years! To those who couldn’t make it, we missed you. Be sure to check out photos, videos, and other event coverage here.

Thank you for being an integral part of our history and success. We look forward to what we can accomplish together in the next 150 years!

 headshot of Mike Sofia

Sofia honored for Hepatitis C cure

Michael Sofia (PhD, '84, Katzenellenbogen) received a 2017 College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS) Alumni Achievement Award for discovering the cure to Hepatitis C. Sofia was honored on campus during Homecoming weekend and gave a talk to chemistry faculty and students highlighting his research.

Read more>>

 Ferris wheel with With Illinois banners on the Illinois Main Quad

With Illinois

On October 13, the university launched its most ambitious philanthropic campaign to date: With Illinois. Events included a festival on the main quad and a signature event at State Farm Center, celebrating Illinois’ storied past and inspired future. Thanks to your support, we are already more than 50% of the way to our $2.25 billion goal!

Visit With Illinois to watch the launch celebration online, learn more about the campaign, and be inspired by how you can get involved.


Upcoming events

 Holiday Magic
December 13, 16, and 17, 2017 (Urbana, IL)

ACS Chemistry Alumni Reception
March 18, 2018 (New Orleans, LA)

May 13, 2018 (Urbana, IL)
with guest speaker Peter Dorhout (BS, ’85), president-elect of the American Chemical Society


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