Saint Louis University

Departmental Awards

Each year the Department of Chemistry recognizes outstanding students from freshmen through doctoral level. We have an awards banquet where we recognize these and all graduating students.

Below are descriptions of the awards and the students honored:

Outstanding Freshman Chemistry Student: Jason Lorenzo Cocjin

This award is given to a freshman major who has displayed outstanding performance in the general chemistry sequence.

Jason was selected as the outstanding student by his lecture professors.

Hugh B. Donahoe Award in Organic Chemistry: Mark Cheneler

This award is given to a sophomore major who has displayed outstanding performance on an organic chemistry special exam.

Mark is a second year biochemistry major and aspires to study medicine ; he is also an honors student.

Vincent Spaziano Memorial Scholarship: Savitha Baragada

The Vincent Spaziano Memorial Scholarship honors our long time colleague and friend, Dr. Vince Spaziano. Vince had a long career at SLU and lead the department as chair for many years. His life and love for teaching organic chemistry are memorialized in this book scholarship, which provides $500 to the recipient. The recipient selected is a student who demonstrates outstanding performance in the organic chemistry course sequence.


Saviatha is a second year student majoring in biochemistry and hopes to go on to study medicine.


The following students were selected by the faculty for each award:

Saint Louis Section American Chemical Society Outstanding Junior Chemistry Student: Kurtis Breger

Kurtis was recognized at the ACS St. Louis local section awards banquet, where he received a certificate and nameplate for the plaque displayed in the department. Kurtis is a biochemistry major, and also this year's recipient of the St. Louis Rubber group scholarship, a two year award.


James D. Collins Award for Excellence in Student Academic Achievement: Evan Lloyd

This award is given to a senior that has demonstrated outstanding work in the major.

Evan is a chemistry major and will be attending graduate school for chemical engineering after finishing at SLU. Evan received a medallion from the College of Arts and Sciences and was recognized as an outstanding senior in the department of chemistry.


American Chemical Society Award in Inorganic Chemistry 2015: Evan Lloyd

This award is made by the ACS Division of inorganic Chemistry to recognize students who display an aptitude for a career in the field. The winner is determined by performance in inorganic chemistry and approved jointly by the inorganic chemistry faculty in the department.


American Chemical Society Award in Analytical Chemistry 2015: Robert Filla

This award is made by the ACS Division of Analytical Chemistry to recognize students who display an aptitude for a career in the field. The winner is determined by performance in analytical chemistry and approved jointly by the analytical chemistry faculty in the department.

Rob is a sophomore chemistry major and has started a research project with Dr. Scott Martin.

American Institute of Chemists Outstanding Senior Award: Paige Gruenke

Paige is a biochemistry major, and recognized as an outstanding senior with this award. Paige will be attending graduate school to further her studies in biochemistry.


Hypercube Scholar Award: Maria Toro

This award is presented to a student who aspires to attend graduate school in the chemical sciences, and consists of the software package and a certificate.

Maria is a biochemistry major, and has been doing research under the direction of Dr. Jim Edwards. Maria is recognized for her hard work, contributions to her research group, and potential to become scholar. She plans to pursue graduate studies in chemical biology.


American Institute of Chemists Outstanding Masters Student Award: Benjamin Mehl

This award recognizes outstanding work by a Masters student. Ben is recognized for his hard work, creativity, and dedication in the research lab. Ben works with Dr. Martin, and has made significant contributions already by finding novel ways to overcome some hurdles in their capillary systems.


American Institute of Chemists Outstanding Doctoral Student Award: Ismaila Emahi

This award recognizes outstanding work by a Doctoral student. Ismaila is recognized for his significant contributions to research under Dr. Baum's direction. Ismaila is tenacious in his desire to learn and has developed into a scientist with great capacity to be an inspirational teacher and researcher. He plans to teach in his home country of Ghana.


Carol M. and Joseph R. Franks Graduate Award in Chemistry: Elseddik Abdelkader

This award recognizes an outstanding graduate student. Seddik is finishing his doctorate with Dr. Steve Buckner. Seddik is not only hard working, but has developed into an independent researcher and effective teacher. Seddik plans to teach in the University setting in his home country of Egypt.


Gamma Sigma Epsilon Inductees

These students were recently inducted into the national chemistry honor society, Gamma Sigma Epsilon. We present certificates to those present this evening and honor cords to seniors: Mark Cheneler, Ryan Rodenborn, Patrick Sweeney


Other Awards

SLU Dissertation Fellowship awarded to Ying Jia

Elizabeth Jolley was awarded a travel grant from the RNA society to present her research.

The Saint Louis University Chemistry Club received a "Commendable Award" for their outstanding programming. They were recognized at the ACS national meeting in Denver this month. They also were awarded a "Green Chemistry Award" and recognized for their programs that involve environmentally friendly practices. Congratulations!

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