Chemistry Students Receive ACS Awards

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03 May 2019

Congratulations to Shea Stewart, Nick Litak, and Maggie Kuzemchak, the winners of the 2019 American Chemical Society Undergraduate Awards!

Graduating senior Shea Stewart is the recipient of the ACS Undergraduate Award in Inorganic Chemistry. The award was established to recognize outstanding academic achievement in inorganic chemistry and to encourage further study in the field. During his time at Penn State, Stewart conducted research with the Schaak group, focusing on synthesizing bulk and nano materials for use as catalysts to facilitate selective organic transformations. After graduation, he plans to pursue a Ph.D. in chemistry at Temple University. “Winning this award came as a surprise to me,” Stewart adds, “I feel very honored.”


Shea Stewart

Junior Nick Litak is the recipient of the ACS Undergraduate Award in Physical Chemistry. The award recognizes Litak’s outstanding achievements in academics and research. Litak is a member of the Lear group, where he has been conducting research on how the electronic properties of gold nanoparticles are changed upon the manipulation of the particles’ surface chemistry. “I am extremely honored to receive this award,” Litak notes, “I would like to thank Dr. Lear and all the professors I have had over the last three years that have allowed me achieve this.”


Nick Litak

Graduating senior Maggie Kuzemchak is the recipient of the ACS Undergraduate Award in Analytical Chemistry. Kuzemchak is a member of the Freedman group. Her work focuses on atmospheric chemistry. Kuzemchak is currently studying scented home products, examining the particles released by the products when they are exposed to the air. Her work has the potential to help scientists understand how these products impact human health. Following her graduation, Kuzemchak will be taking her chemistry knowledge to Mozambique, where she will work as a science teacher with the Peace Corp.   


Maggie Kuzemchak, Conducting Research in the Lab

Please join the Department of Chemistry in congratulating these outstanding students on this exciting achievement!


Maria Landschoot

Communications Coordinator

Department of Chemistry

Penn State University

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