Successes of Recent Graduates

Duquesne University has an excellent reputation for providing research opportunities for undergraduate students. As early as freshman year, students are encouraged to join a laboratory and engage in undergraduate research conducted by chemistry professors or those in the Bayer School of Natural and Environmental Sciences. These experiences not only enrich their education but also guide their futures as they progress into careers after graduating from Duquesne.

Our graduates have subsequently completed M.D. and Ph.D. programs at prestigious institutions including Princeton, Harvard, Yale, Cornell, Duke, Johns Hopkins, Penn, Vanderbilt, North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Purdue, Texas A&M, Pitt, Michigan, Northwestern, Penn State, Ohio State, Case Western and Temple. In addition to graduate studies, our students also go on to pursue successful careers at various companies and government entities such as Bayer, PPG, Valspar, Mylan, Covestro, L'Oréal, Thermo Fisher Scientific, the Center for Disease Control, and the National Institute of Health. 

As part of their degrees, undergraduates in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry prepare a capstone project to summarize the research they have conducted during their time at Duquesne. Students conducting research have opportunities to publish papers and travel to various conferences, including the National American Chemical Society (ACS) meeting, during the spring of their junior year. Many of our students receive funding toward tuition, travel, and research supplies through the esteemed Crable Endowment, Deverse Endowment, and Bayer Science Scholar Fellowship. These fellowships are awarded based on academic accomplishment.

Graduating seniors who completed either an Honors Thesis or a Senior Thesis are acknolwedged below, with Crable, Deverse, and Bayer Science Scholars indicated with an asterisk*.

2022 Graduates

  • Peter Demjanenko: Fabricating an Anti-Inflammatory Surface for Orthopedic Implants, under the mentorship of Dr. Ellen Gawalt
  • Emily Sipko*: Macromolecular Crowding Studies: Toward Development of a new Assay and Effects on Mitochondrial Malate Dehydrogenase, under the mentorship of Dr. David Seybert
  • Lindsey Ocheltree: Nitrated aza-Boron-difluoro-dipyrromethene Dye Core and Effects on Bathochromic Shift, under the mentorship of Dr. Thomas Montgomery
  • Carlan Gray*: Structural Characterization of Nuclear Enriched Abundant Transcript 1 (NEAT1) and NEAT1's Contribution to Paraspeckle Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, under the mentorship of Dr. Rita Mihailescu
  • Kezia Jemison*: Novel Role of Solvent Water Clusters in Mono-anionic Malonate Decarboxylation: A Quantum Mechanical/Molecular Mechanical Study, under the mentorship of Dr. Jeffrey Evanseck

2021 Graduates

  • Paige Aley: Highly Efficient Oxygen-Evolving Electrodes from Recycled Materials for Storing Renewable Energy Sustainably, under the mentorship of Dr. Aaron Bloomfield
  • Marianne Hanna: Efforts Towards the Synthesis of Epibatidine and Exploring Nickel Catalysis in Allene Synthesis, under the mentorship of Dr. Thomas Montgomery
  • Bryan Kelleher*: Investigating the Effects of G-quadruplexes on the Interactions Between hnRNP K mRNA and microRNA 1249-39, under the mentorship of Dr. Rita Mihailescu
  • Hannah Weber*: Preventing Thrombus Formation on Left Ventricular Assist Device, under the mentorship of Dr. Ellen Gawalt

2020 Graduates

  • Jake Falkowski: Bifunctional Complexes of First-row Transition Metals and Monoprotic Aminophosphine Ligands as Possible Catalysts for Transfer Hydrogenation Reactions, under the mentorship of Dr. Aaron Bloomfield
  • Anna Iocovino: Tandem Mass Spectrometry of Anionic Uranyl Complexes Containing Halide and Acetate Ligands, under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Van Stipdonk
  • Elisabeth Lataweic: Catalyst Assisted Ion Pairing in the Thiourea-catalyzed Alkylation of α-Chloroisochromans, under the mentorship of Dr. Jeffrey Evanseck
  • Jared Miller: Macromolecular Crowding Effects on Miscrosomal Cytochrome P450 Reductase, under the mentorship of Dr. David Seybert
  • Andre Orbeta: Structural Studies of the Serotonin Transporter S190C Mutant using Cross-linking Mass Spectroscopy, under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Cascio
  • Brynn Roman: Effects of Macromolecular Crowding on Aldose Reductase, under the mentorship of Dr. David Seybert
  • McKenna Then: Investigating the Effects of G-quadruplexes and RNA-binding Proteins on pre-miRNAs, under the mentorship of Dr. Rita Mihailescu

2019 Graduates

  • Emily Allego: Surface Initiated Polymerization of SS316L for Corrosion Resistance, under the mentorship of Dr. Ellen Gawalt
  • Brandon Caridi: Coupling Photoaffinity Crosslinking with Mass Spectrometry to Investigate the Extracellular Loops of the Rat Serotonin Transporter, under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Cascio
  • Adam Gargano: Investigating the Apo State of the Rat Serotonin Transporter through Single Cysteine Point Mutations Coupled with Cross-Linking Mass Spectrometry, under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Cascio
  • Hannah Gering: Structural Studies of Human GlyR using Site-Specific Crosslinking Mass Spectrometry, under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Cascio
  • Emily Leung: Experimental and Computational Studies on Oxide Surfaces, under the mentorship of Dr. Ellen Gawalt
  • Keefe McDougal: Characterizing a Protein-RNA Binding Mechanism Towards a Potential Cause of Fragile X Syndrome: A Biophysical Investigation, under the mentorship of Dr. Rita Mihailescu
  • John Roth: Fragile X Mental Retardation Protein-mediated Regulation of pre-miR-125b-2 Dicer Processing, under the mentorship of Dr. Rita Mihailescu
  • Taylor Sheehy: The Effects of Macromolecular Crowding on the Kinetics of Dihydrofolate Reductase, under the mentorship of Dr. David Seybert