2019 in Review: Chemistry Student Seminar

Categories: Students

Chemistry Student Seminar (CSS) is a student-run weekly seminar series open to the members of the MIT Chemistry community.

Chemistry Student Seminars Logo 2019
Chemistry Student Seminars Logo 2019

Chemistry Student Seminar (CSS) is a student-run weekly seminar series for graduate students and post-doctoral researchers from all the divisions in the MIT Chemistry Department. Through the CSS series, we seek to enhance our community’s understanding of diverse research topics and to stimulate discussion across all divisions of chemistry. Researchers are provided with the opportunity to share their work, published and unpublished, with colleagues from different backgrounds, receiving valuable feedback. CSS talks can also serve as a venue for practicing upcoming job talks or conference presentations.

In the 2018–2019 academic year, we hosted 30 talks from students/postdoctoral scholars inside the department and 1 invited talk from outside. We thank our speakers (see table below) very much for their contributions! We also extend our gratitude to all those who attended the talks and initiated stimulating discussions after the seminars over donuts, bagels, and coffee.

To highlight a few of the talks, Dr. Junpeng Wang showed how mechanical force could manipulate polymers on the molecular-scale. Nicole Moody presented her PhD work on improving perovskite solar cells from a perspective of personal journey guided by with her passion for sustainability. Sam Kazer shared an interdisciplinary research for understanding immune responses to HIV inspection that augmented molecular biology with big data analysis.

We also welcomed our fourth CSS guest speaker, Prof. Shih-Yuan Liu from Boston College, who presented a talk titled “Translating New Chemical Space to New Function: The case of BN/CC Isosterism”. Prof. Liu continued to engage with students and post-docs throughout the day over lunch and in one-on-one meetings, enthusiastically sharing his experience and listening to the science that people shared with him.

Concluding such a wonderful year of CSS, we are continuing our series of excellent seminars every week in the 2019-2020 academic year. We are constantly working on the development of CSS and welcome your suggestions and contributions to improve it. Lastly, we are very grateful to the new, younger members of Team CSS.

We hope to see you at the next CSS!

AY 2018–2019:


2018 Fall / 2019 IAP

Date Speaker Group Grad/P.D. Area
9/7/18 Junpeng Wang Johnson (PhD Craig Group, Duke) Post-doc Organic
9/14/18 Jessica Lamb Johnson (PhD Coates Group, Cornell) Post-doc Organic
9/28/18 Hosein Tafazolian Schrock (PhD Conley Group, Riverside) Post-doc Inorganic
10/5/18 Yoonseob Kim Swager Post-doc Organic
10/12/18 Joseph Dennis Buchwald Graduate Organic
10/19/18 Liz Foreman Field (PhD Murray Group, UC Irvine) Post-doc Physical
10/26/18 Ash Wright Dinca Post-doc Inorganic
11/2/18 Lindsey Orgren Raines Graduate Organic
11/9/18 Ashley Tong Schlau-Cohen Graduate Physical
11/16/18 Julian Cooper Radosevich Graduate Organic
11/30/18 Scott Shepard Cummins Graduate Inorganic
12/7/18 Alex Justen Kiessling Graduate Bio
12/14/18 Lasantha Wickramasinghe Schrock (PhD Sharp Group, Missouri) Post-doc Inorganic
1/11/19 Kelley Danahy Jamison Graduate Organic
1/18/19 Michael Pegis Surendranath (PhD Mayer Group, Yale) Post-doc Inorganic
1/25/19 Hendrik Utzat Bawendi Graduate Physical
2/1/19 Heemal Dhanjee Pentelute/Buchwald Post-doc Bio


2019 Spring

Date Speaker Group Grad/P.D. Area
2/8/19 Che-Jen Lin Swager Post-doc Org.
2/15/19 Minjung Son Schlau-Cohen Graduate Phys
2/22/19 Corey Kaminsky Surendranath Graduate Inorg.
3/1/19 Tao Yan Schrock Post-doc Inorg
3/8/19 Saki Ichikawa Buchwald Graduate Org.
3/15/19 Cassie Jarvis Kiessling Graduate Bio
3/22/19 Feng Zhai Schrock (PhD U. Chicago, Jordon Group) Post-doc Inorg
4/5/19 Yuwei Gu Johnson Graduate Org.
4/12/19 James Bour Dinca Post-doc Inorg.
4/19/19 Prof. Shih-Yuan Liu Boston College Guest Speaker Org./Inorg.
4/26/19 Nicole Moody Bawendi Graduate Phys.
5/3/19 Amanda Stubbs Dinca Graduate Inorg.
5/10/19 Sam Kazer Shalek Graduate Bio.
5/17/19 Suan Tuang Pentelute Graduate Bio