Our Students

The School of Molecular Sciences degree programs have opened access to students from a wide range of diverse backgrounds, and who have followed quite different pathways into academia. We are proud of our students and their successes, here are some of their stories. We look forward to you joining them and the rest of our community as a chemistry or biochemistry degree student.

Our Students

Recent Highlights

David Jacobson
Class of 2020

Paramedic credits ASU Online for success

Sydney Pickett, Eric Do, Jessica Wang, & Gabriella Cerna
Class of 2024

School of Molecular Sciences students reflect on their first semester in the middle of the pandemic

Kristofer Gonzalez
Class of 2020

ASU Online student graduates while in the military

Jesus Peralta
Class of 2023

First-generation ASU student blazes new trail

Madeleine Howell
Class of 2020

ASU 2020 Dean’s Medalist heads to Harvard

Miguel Bahena
Class of 2020

A change of mindset leads to a bright future

Tal Sneh
Class of 2021

3 ASU juniors win top national awards

Katja Klosterman
Class of 2019

ASU grad seeks to be a future change maker

Zoe Liberman-Martin
Class of 2019

Spring 2019 Dean’s Medalists 

Adwa Alhatlan
Class of 2018

Back-up plan brings biochemistry major to ASU

Darian Takase
Class of 2018

ASU a perfect fit for biochemistry graduate 

Alexandria Layton
Class of 2018

Biochemistry senior shines with research 

Victoria Hernandez
Class of 2018

A love of chemistry took grad a long way from home

Capria Rinaldi
Class of 2017

Biochemistry senior shines with research

Patrick Almhjell
Class of 2017

SMS Spring 2017 Dean's Medalists

Dean's Medalists

Ellen Streitwieser

Class of 2021

Major: Biochemistry
 

Accomplishments: Ellen is an ASU Online student interested in the field of neuroscience and advocating for women in science. She is the founder and president of the Inclusion, Diversity, Education, Advocacy in Science (IDEAS) Student Society, one of the largest student organizations at ASU with over 600 active members.

Elinor Sauer

Class of 2020

Majors: Chemistry (environmental) & biological sciences
 

Accomplishments: She is a Moeur Award winner, received two prestigious scholarships from the SMS, and a recipient of the NASA space grant fellowship. Sauer was in John Nagy’s research team focusing on the North American pika and worked in Professor Hilairy Hartnett’s Carbon and Nitrogen Dynamics lab.

Madeleine Howell

Class of 2020

Major: Chemistry

Accomplishments: Howell has been extensively involved in undergraduate research at ASU in the interfaces of materials chemistry and health and co-authored several peer-reviewed, published papers. She is a Goldwater Scholarship recipient and was awarded the ACS Divisions of Physical Chemistry and Inorganic Chemistry awards from the SMS.

Carolyn Clark

Class of 2019

Major: Biochemistry

Accomplishments: A recipient of the research-focused LEAP Scholarship for transfer students, Clark worked on a Mayo Clinic-funded project involving the synthesis of peptides and another project that aimed to develop artificial amino acids alongside Professor Giovanna Ghirlanda.

Zoe Liberman-Martin

Class of 2019

Major: Chemistry 

Accomplishments: Liberman-Martin exited high school planning to become a professional musician. But after earning her associate degree in music and working as an EMT, she landed at ASU. Faculty members praise Liberman-Martin’s natural curiosity, analytical ability, and enthusiasm.

Alexis Ramirez

Class of 2018

Major: Biochemistry (medicinal chemistry)

Accomplishments: As a student in Barrett, The Honors College at ASU, his honors thesis focused on developing a dielectrophoretic method to separate gold nanoparticles.

Jonathan Vie

Class of 2017

Major: Biochemistry 

Accomplishments: Vie joined the Marine Corps to help pay for college and has since discovered his passion for teaching. He has been a tutor for high school students while pursuing his degree and is dedicated to helping young students grow in the STEM fields within the Phoenix area.    

Patrick Almhjell

Class of 2017

Major: Biochemistry

Accomplishments: Almhjell conducted research in Professor Jeremy Mills’s biochemistry lab and Professor M. Foster Olive’s psychology lab, where he would investigate amino acids and behavioral neuroscience. He maintained a perfect GPA as an honors student and served as a teaching assistant for upper-division chemistry and psychology courses.

Havell Markus

Class of 2016

Majors: Biochemistry, Mathematics

Accomplishments: Markus conducted extensive research as a Helios Scholar in the Center for Noninvasive Diagnostics at the Translational Genomics Research Center and multiple labs at ASU. His research and thesis work were presented in four conferences and resulted in a first author publication in the Journal of Young Investigators.

Sahba Zaare

Class of 2016

Major: Biochemistry

Accomplishments: Zaare was engaged in undergraduate research in the Center for Personalized Diagnostics at the Biodesign Institute. His first publication was accepted by the Journal of Visualized Experiments and he was the recipient of the Hypercube Award and the Merck Index Award.

Hallie Sussman

Class of 2015

Major: Biochemistry

Accomplishments: Sussman worked in Professor Neal Woodbury’s laboratory at the Biodesign Institute on projects involving photosynthetic reaction centers as part of her honors thesis. She is expected to be a co-author on at least one of the papers that result from the research and is the recipient of the SMS Biochemistry Award.

Goldwater Scholars

The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation was established by Congress in 1986 to serve as a living memorial to honor the lifetime work of Senator Barry Goldwater, who served his country for 56 years as a soldier and statesman, including 30 years in the U.S. Senate. By providing scholarships to college sophomores and juniors who intend to pursue research careers in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering, the Goldwater Foundation is helping ensure that the U.S. is producing the number of highly-qualified professionals the Nation needs in these critical fields.

2020: Tal Sneh
Field of Study: Biochemistry and Physics;
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering. Apply nanotechnology as a professor at a university to develop affordable tools that address diagnostic and therapeutic challenges in the field.

2020: Alexis Hocken
Field of Study: Chemical engineering with a minor in biochemistry
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering. Conduct research in nanomaterials for biomedical applications.

2019: Madeleine Howell
Field of Study: Chemistry
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Physical and Biological Chemistry. Develop technologies for ultrafast and non-invasive imaging to answer fundamental biological and chemical questions as research faculty at a university.
 

2018: Meilin Zhu
Field of Study: Biochemistry
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Biological Engineering. Conduct research in global health engineering with an emphasis on point of care technologies and teach at a university.


2018: Humza Zubair
Field of Study: Biochemistry
Career Goal: Ph.D. in biochemistry and biological sciences. Teach and conduct research to advance scientific knowledge.

2014: Ryan Yue Muller
Major(s): Biochemistry, Molecular/Cellular Biology
Career Goals: Ph.D. in Synthetic Biology. Conduct research in biotechnology and teach at the university level.

2011: John Benjamin Ingraham
Major(s): Biochemistry, Applied Mathematics
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Computational Biology. Conduct research in genetic and cell regulatory processes and teach at the university level.

2011: Michael James Kenney
Major(s): Chemistry
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Chemistry. Conduct research in solar energy and teach at a university.

2011: Erik Stout
Major(s): Biochemistry, Economics
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Neuroscience. Conduct research in spinal cord regeneration and neuronal plasticity or brain- machine interfacing.

2009: Joshua Ryan Niska
Major(s): Biochemistry
Career Goal: M.D./Ph.D. in Cancer Biology. Conduct cancer research in both laboratory and clinical settings, and teach at the university/medical school level.

2009: Charles Benjamin Strauber
Major(s): Biochemistry/Linguistics
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Neuroscience. Conduct research on the neural bases of language, learning, and development, and teach at the university level.

2008: Charlene Bashore
Major(s): Biochemistry
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Chemical Biology. Conduct research in biomedical science, particularly cancer research.

2008: Lara Cardy
Major(s): Biochemistry/Speech and Hearing
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Neuroscience. Teach at the university level and conduct research regarding the neurological underpinnings of developmental disorders, specifically Autism Spectrum Disorders.

2006: James J. Cronican
Major(s): Biochemistry
Career Goal: Ph.D. in Biochemistry. Conduct research work on uncharacterized proteins, detailing the fundamental principles of enzyme catalysis for the purpose of applying this knowledge to address needs that exist now or in the future.

2006: Shannon P. Fortin
Major(s): Biochemistry
Career Goal: M.D./Ph.D. in Biochemistry/Computational Mathematics. Conduct research with an emphasis in cancer cell biology, integrating a clinical perspective.

Award Recipients

2021-2022

Scholarships 

George M. Bateman Memorial Scholarship | Rylee James,  Chemistry

Therald Moeller Scholarship | Miriam Goras,  Biochemistry

Wayne W. Luchsinger Chemistry Scholarship | Ryan Korinek,  Biochemistry

John Holloway Undergraduate Scholarship | Gabriella Cerna,  Biochemistry

Edward B. Skibo Memorial Scholarship | Lauren Harstad,  Chemistry

Arizona Society for Coatings Technology Scholarship | Ethan Kelly Padilla,  Biochemistry

Ted Brown Memorial Scholarship | Hilary Simpson, Biochemistry (Medicinal Chem)

SMS Women in Science Scholarship | Kristen Krip,  Biochemistry

SMS First Generation Scholarship | Missy Tran,  Biochemistry

SMS Veterans Scholarship | Cory Smith,  Biochemistry

SMS Scholarship | Chloe Gallello,  Biochemistry (Medicinal Chem)

Awards

Spring 2021 SMS Dean’s Medalist | Ellen Streitwieser,  Biochemistry

Distinguished Biochemistry Merit Award | Jack St. Peter,  Biochemistry

Distinguished Chemistry Merit Award | Cole Graham,  Chemistry (Environmental) 

SAACS Organic Achievement Award | Ahlea Reyes,  Chemical Engineering

ACS Division of Organic Chemistry Undergraduate Award | Bryan Ugaz,  Biochemistry

ACS Division of Inorganic Chemistry Undergraduate Award | Madeline Alzamora,  Chemistry

Royal Society of Chemistry Certificate of Excellence | Waris Anderson,  Biochemistry

2020-2021

Scholarships 

George M. Bateman Memorial Scholarship | Holly Hemesath, Biochemistry

Therald Moeller Scholarship | Bryan Ugaz, Biochemistry

Wayne W. Luchsinger Chemistry Scholarship | Tia Swenty, Biochemistry 

John Holloway Undergraduate Scholarship | Elinor Sauer, Chemistry (Environmental)

Edward B. Skibo Memorial Scholarship | Tal Sneh, Biochemistry (Medicinal Chemistry)

Goldwater Scholarship | Tal Sneh, Biochemistry (Medicinal Chemistry)

Arizona Society for Coatings Technology Scholarship | Brian Clark, Chemistry 

Ted Brown Memorial Scholarship | Sam Bakotich, Biochemistry

SMS Women in Science Scholarship | Madeleine Zheng, Biochemistry

SMS Women in Science Scholarship | Madeline Alzamora, Chemistry

SMS Women in Science Scholarship | Elle Streitweiser, Biochemistry

SMS First Generation Scholarship | Jesus Peralta, Biochemistry

SMS Veterans Scholarship | Anthony Pacheco, Biochemistry

SMS Scholarship | David Reed, Biochemistry

Awards

Spring 2020 SMS Dean’s Medalist | Madeleine Howell, Chemistry 

Fall 2020 SMS Dean’s Medalist | Elinor Sauer, Chemistry (Environmental)

Distinguished Biochemistry Merit Award | Sabrina Leung, Biochemistry

Distinguished Biochemistry Merit Award | Alexis Nichols, Biochemistry (Medicinal Chemistry)

Distinguished Biochemistry Merit Award | Paul Turack, Biochemistry

Distinguished Chemistry Merit Award | David Flesher, Chemistry

SAACS Organic Achievement Award | Anne Mcdaniel, Biochemistry 

ACS Division of Organic Chemistry Undergraduate Award | Ellen Streitwieser, Biochemistry 

ACS Division of Analytical Chemistry Undergraduate Award | William Knight, Chemistry (Environmental)

ACS Division of Inorganic Chemistry Undergraduate Award | Matthew Duplissa, Chemistry

ACS Division of Physical Chemistry Undergraduate Award | Brock Leland, Chemistry

Royal Society of Chemistry Certificate of Excellence | Holly Hemesath, Biochemistry