Instructors

Badih Assaf

Instructors Badih

I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physics. I attended the American University of Beirut and received my B.Sc. in Physics in 2009. I first moved to US in 2009 and joined Northeastern University in Boston. I graduated from Northeastern with a PhD in Physics in 2014. After that, I joined the Physics Department of Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris, France where I was postdoctoral fellow until 2018. I moved back to the US and became a faculty member at Notre Dame in 2018.

My group's research in the physics department is focused on studying the fundamental properties of novel quantum materials. We use solid state chemistry and quantum mechanics to engineer new functionalities in materials, beyond what nature can offers. To explore and identify these new functionalities, we measure the electrical and optical properties of these materials under strong magnetic fields at low temperature near absolute zero (about -270°C). Our lab has one of the strongest university-based superconducting magnets reaching 18 Tesla.

In my spare time, I enjoy cooking and music. My travels with my wife usually involve trying a new cuisine, visiting a vineyard or a farm.


Juan DelValle

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I was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and took an early interest in science with the help of childhood chemistry kits and an inspirational AP chemistry teacher in high school. The puzzle-solving logic and architectural beauty of undergraduate organic chemistry (Carleton College) convinced me that I wanted to pursue a career in academia. Graduate school (UC San Diego) and a postdoctoral stint (University of Montreal) provided training as I progressed toward my goal of leading my own research laboratory. I started my independent career at New Mexico State University and moved to the University of South Florida where I was promoted to Associate Professor. We (myself, my wife, 2 kids, 4 graduate students, 1 postdoc, and a cat) moved to Notre Dame in July 2019.

I am currently the William K. Warren Family Associate Professor in the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry. My research team and I are interested in the chemical synthesis of protein mimics and peptide natural products with unique biological activities. Our designs are then evaluated in the lab for their effects on cellular pathways that drive cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. What continues to excite me about organic chemistry is the ability to dream up and build molecules that the universe has never seen before, and to use these to directly impact human health. Outside of research, I am passionate about undergraduate teaching and showing students that organic chemistry is actually fascinating and fun.

My wife (who is also faculty in the Department) and I have two sons, and we have enjoyed getting to know our new environment over the past year. When I am not in the lab or classroom, I am most likely playing in the yard with my kids, watching/playing soccer, travelling, or exploring new museums and restaurants with the family.    

 

 


Dan Gezelter

Instructors Dan

I am a professor in the department of Chemistry & Biochemistry and also Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies in the College of Science. I attended Duke University and graduated with a B.S. in Chemistry and Philosophy. After a year at the University of Cambridge working on NMR spectroscopy, I received my PhD in chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley. I was a post-doctoral researcher at Columbia University, before joining the faculty at Notre Dame in 1999. I have received the Rev. Edmund P. Joyce, C.S.C. Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching and the Shilts/Leonard teaching award in the college of science.

I'm a theoretical chemist, and most of my lab's research involves computational chemistry (and trying to teach computers how chemistry works). The systems I study all involve an interface between a solid and a disordered phase (like a liquid or gas). Right now, we're trying to understand problems like "Why is Ice Slippery?" or "How does heat move out of a nanoparticle?" or "How can we use flowing liquids to separate molecules that are left- and right-handed images of each other?"  Figuring out the interesting questions to ask is the most enjoyable part of science! 

My teaching is on the physical side of chemistry. I also teach a Mathematical Methods class and a popular Chemistry of Fermentation & Distillation class. The first semester General Chemistry course is an introduction to physical concepts, and for many students it is the first time they will run into challenging concepts like quantum theory, atomic and molecular structures, thermodynamics, chemical equilibrium, and how rapidly reactions take place. Because this is my research area, I'm enthusiastic about this material, and I hope that enthusiasm transfers to my students!

In my spare time, I play the bagpipes, and serve as the faculty advisor for the Notre Dame Bagpipe Band.


Andrei Jorza

Instructors Andrei

I am associate professor of the practice in the Mathematics Department. I attended Harvard University where I received an AB in 2005 and Princeton University where I graduated with a PhD in 2010. After a postdoctoral position at Caltech I moved to Notre Dame in 2013.

My academic interests lie in number theory and its interactions with harmonic analysis, algebraic geometry and representation theory. At Notre Dame I have taught courses at every level, from calculus for life sciences to elementary number theory with an eye towards cryptography and from multivariable calculus to graduate research in number theory.


Kathryn Mulholland

Instructors Kathryn

I am an Assistant Professor of the Practice in the Department of Mathematics. I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and received a B.S. in Mathematics from Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, CA. I did my graduate work here at Notre Dame, where I studied the connection between Cluster Algebras and Poisson Geometry.

 

Outside of academics, I enjoy cooking, hiking, and playing sports. My most recent culinary adventure has been making homemade pasta and my most recent backpacking trip was Denali National Park in Alaska.


Jim Parise

Instructors Jim

I am a Teaching Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. I grew up in upstate New York and received a B.S. in Chemistry from SUNY Oswego. After working for a year in industry at Bristol-Myers Squibb in Syracuse, NY, I enrolled at Duke University and earned a PhD in Organic Chemistry, focusing on the synthesis of carbohydrate derivatives and studying their interactions with proteins in dilute aqueous solutions. After completing a Postdoc at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, I returned to Duke as an Instructor and Organic Chemistry Laboratory Coordinator. Since joining the faculty at Notre Dame, I've received multiple awards for teaching excellence: the Thomas P. Madden Award for Exceptional Teaching of First Year Students (2015) and the Rev. Edmund P. Joyce Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching (2019).

My scholarly interests include development of more effective teaching methods for large lecture courses and improving organic chemistry pedagogy in both the classroom and laboratory. I administer a new instructor training program and have developed auxiliary courses aimed at supplementing student preparation for introductory organic courses. I have also spearheaded the department’s integration of pedagogical technology into large lecture halls to facilitate active learning through the use of teaching tools like iPads, Surface Pros, and the College of Science Lightboard. I am the coauthor of the textbook "Organic Chemistry, 6th Edition," with Marc Loudon, and its Study Guide and Solutions Manual. I am currently developing a new interactive digital Organic Chemistry textbook, which focuses on helping students develop the skills necessary to succeed in organic chemistry.

In addition to teaching general and organic chemistry, I've also taught various laboratories and a course in the Chemistry of Fermentation and Distillation. Outside of teaching and writing, I enjoy spending time with my family, traveling, running, and beer making.


Kelley Young

Instructors Kelley

I am an assistant teaching professor and general chemistry coordinator in the department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. I attended Adrian College where I was a member of the women’s soccer team and graduated with a B.S. in Chemistry, earning one of the only bachelor’s degrees among my large, extended family. I earned my PhD in chemistry from Michigan State University where I studied charge transfer properties of thin-film semiconductors for solar water oxidation. After completing my PhD, I was a visiting assistant professor at Hope College before joining the faculty at Notre Dame in 2016.

My research at Notre Dame has transitioned from understanding data from electrochemical measurements to that of student generated data. I am currently working on research utilizing course generated data to better inform how we can help students in the course. As course coordinator, I am continually working to implement evidenced based, best-practices to deliver the best general chemistry course possible.

While I do conduct some research at Notre Dame, teaching is my primary focus. The absolute best part of my job is working closely with students to help them to become the best version of themselves, both in and out of the classroom (while hopefully learning how awesome chemistry is along the way).

I married my high school sweetheart and we have two small children. When I am not wrangling said children, I enjoy hiking, mountain biking, camping, hunting, and working in my flower garden.