Carnegie Mellon University Department of Chemistry

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Catalina Achim receives Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award

The Department of Chemistry is very pleased to announce that Catalina Achim has been selected as one of this year's Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholars by the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation. Among this year's thirteen recipients are outstanding junior faculty from Cal Tech, Georgia Tech, Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Scripps, UCLA, and University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The Camille and Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Awards Program was established to strengthen the teaching and research careers of talented young faculty in the chemical sciences. Recipients of the Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Awards are selected primarily based on individual research attainment and promise, along with evidence of excellence in teaching.

Catalina Achim's research involves the design and synthesis of metal-containing nanostructures inspired by biomolecules. She pursues the highly controlled assembly of arrays of transition metal ions using the molecular recognition properties of the metal ions and peptide nucleic acids (PNAs). Polyamide-supported ligands substitute natural nucleobases in PNA and are used to control the position of coordinated metal ions. The structures containing paramagnetic metal centers have potential applications in molecular electronics. A second research direction in her laboratory is towards the synthesis and characterization of polynuclear Fe(II) complexes that exhibit spin transitions and have potential for memory storage devices. In addition to teaching Inorganic Chemistry and Transition Metal Chemistry, she is planning a new project-oriented graduate course in coordination chemistry where students will create software for the analysis of molecular symmetry and properties.

Previous recipients of Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Awards at Carnegie Mellon include Terry Collins, David Yaron, and David Sholl.

April 2003