Carnegie Mellon University Department of Chemistry

Members of the department participate in many outreach activities. Pictured above at the far right is Assistant Teaching Professor Gizelle Sherwood, (S'08) working with elementary school students enrolled in a CMITES workshop in August 2011. The students went to Phipps conservatory to do on-site testing of water quality in the outdoor lily pond.

Educational Initiatives



The Center for Nucleic Acids Science and Technology (CNAST) at Carnegie Mellon University has developed since 2009 "DNAZone" (formerly called LiveDNA), an educational outreach program for 4th-12th grade students based on nucleic acid themes. The program is directed by Catalina Achim. The DNAZone program creates educational materials that can be used in teaching core concepts of chemistry, physics, biology and engineering, and illustrate how chemistry is the foundation for bio- and nanotechnology. The educational materials are used through a network of outreach programs at Carnegie Mellon (e.g. Summer Academy for Math and Science) and in CNAST faculty members' demonstrations and experiments in classrooms at two schools from the Pittsburgh Public School system.


TutorNet is a volunteer organization at Carnegie Mellon University committed to providing sustained educational support to Pittsburgh schools through a combination of classroom and on-line tutoring. TutorNet, which was established by Prof. Newell Washburn in 2006, is designed to help Pittsburgh students learn about and be excited by science, and the program relies on the enthusiasm and commitment to volunteerism of the Carnegie Mellon students as well as the dedication of the Pittsburgh school teachers.

Past Programs

CUNY-Carnegie Mellon Summer Research Program

CUNY and Carnegie Mellon University have partnered, through the help of New York's LSAMP program, to develop an exciting summer research program for highly motivated CUNY students to do research in the Chemistry or Biological Sciences Department at Carnegie Mellon. This program builds on a USDA-funded partnership in 2006–2009.

Governor’s Institute for Physical Science Educators

Summer institutes have brought hundreds of people to the Carnegie Mellon campus for one day to two weeks of intensive hands-on laboratory experience and curriculum development discussions. New in 2000 was the Governor’s Institute for Physical Science Educators (GIPSE), funded by the State of Pennsylvania and co-directed by Karen Stump and Kip Bollinger, to support innovative curriculum development for K–12 teachers.

Science Van Outreach

Garry Warnock and a staff of master teachers presented a wide range of demonstrations and hands-on workshops to thousands of Pittsburgh area students and teachers, primarily at the middle school level.