College of Letters and Sciences

DEPARTMENT OF CHEMISTRY (CHEM)

Welcome to the captivating world of the Chemistry Department, where scientific exploration knows no bounds. Our department is a hub of innovation and discovery, where faculty and staff are dedicated to unraveling the complexities of matter and its transformations. With a dynamic blend of theoretical knowledge and hands-on experimentation, students are empowered to grasp the intricacies of chemical reactions and molecular structures. Our accomplished faculty, comprised of esteemed researchers and passionate educators, guide students on a journey that spans from the microscopic realm to real-world applications. Through cutting-edge laboratories and collaborative projects, students are equipped with the skills and insights necessary to make meaningful contributions to fields ranging from medicine to environmental science. The Chemistry Department stands as a testament to the power of curiosity and exploration, shaping the future of science one discovery at a time.

Contact us

John W Ejnik
Department Chair & Professor
Phone: 262-472-1083
Location: Upham Hall 220A

Julia Rowehl
Department Assistant
Phone: 262-472-1070
Location: Upham Hall 220

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Mission Statement

The mission of the Department of Chemistry, as a member of the College of Letters & Sciences, is to:

  • Create an environment that supports learning and research;
  • Improve student's ability to analyze problems and develop appropriate solutions;
  • Establish and maintain a community of scholars and students who aspire to high standards of achievement; and
  • Model in ourselves and encourage in our students the ideas of civic responsibility and engagement, as well as personal and professional integrity.

As a science department, we regard our mission to include:

  • Teaching students systematic methods for evaluating evidence and information by helping them to build and test scientific hypotheses and theories;
  • Fostering students' critical thinking skills such as drawing conclusions, inferring relationships, solving problems, and making predictions about the natural world; and
  • Improving science literacy for student citizens, consistent with the philosophy of liberal studies.

As a department of chemistry, we are committed to providing:

  • A rigorous, effective, and up-to-date curriculum for chemistry majors and minors, with depth of study for those students who desire to pursue advanced study in or a career related to chemistry or science education;
  • Effective and engaging courses for students who choose to take chemistry courses as either part of the breadth of a liberal arts education or whose majors or career goals require them;
  • A safe, relevant laboratory environment for practical exploration of chemical principles, methods, and techniques;
  • Relevant educational experiences in the chemical sciences through public outreach with emphasis on the UW-Whitewater service area;
  • Hands-on learning experiences in all areas of the curriculum which include the partnership of students, faculty, and staff in research and other scholarly activities;
  • Well-informed and accurate academic advising through supportive and constructive advising sessions;
  • A well-maintained collection of state-of-the-art instruments for student, faculty, and staff use;
  • Opportunities tied to environmental sustainability as part of both our curriculum and our research endeavors in order to emphasize responsible citizenry to the global community.
  • Support for the development of faculty and staff teaching innovations and research interests;
  • A strong disciplinary identity, in part by maintaining accreditation with the American Chemical Society while providing opportunities for interdisciplinary study and research through collaborations with other disciplines and departments.

Facilities
Upham Hall has just undergone a $40-million renovation and is now one of the University’s premier learning facilities. This building, completed in Fall 2006, houses new research laboratories and faculty offices and features four 60-seat classrooms, one 108-seat lecture hall, one 185-seat lecture hall, well equipped multimedia classrooms, modern research laboratories, a second floor consisting mostly of chemistry labs with new fume hoods and demonstration benches, and 34,000 square feet of new space. The small size of the chemistry department allows students direct, hands-on access to all department instrumentation, including:

  • 300 MHZ nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometer (NMR)
  • EMX-plus electron spin resonance spectrometer (ESR)
  • Electrochemical analyzer
  • Fluorescence spectrophotometer
  • Fourier Transform-IR spectrophotometer (FTIR)
  • Gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer (GC-MS)
  • High-performance liquid chromatograph (HPLC)
  • Ultraviolet-visible spectrophotometer (UV-Vis)
  • Atomic absorption spectrometer (AAS)
  • Gas chromatograph (GC)
  • Inductively coupled plasma spectrometer (ICP)
  • Differential scanning calorimeter (DSC)

Instrumentation Summary:

The Department has the following state of the art instruments: a nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometer (NMR) an electron spin resonance spectrometer (ESR), a Fourier Transform-infrared spectrometer (FTIR), a diode array UV-Visible spectrophotometer and a fluorescence spectrophotometer, which are used to probe the nature of molecules prepared by students in various chemistry student laboratories. Additionally, the department also has an atomic absorption spectrometer and an inductively coupled plasma spectrometer (ICP) which can be used to determine the concentrations of most elements in up to ppm or ppb levels.

Furthermore, the department also possesses a gas chromatograph (GC) and a high-performance liquid chromatograph (HPLC), which are used to separate and characterize chemicals in complex mixtures. The gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer (GCMS) housed in the department is composed of two major building blocks: a gas chromatograph and a mass spectrometer. These two components, used together, allow a much finer degree of substance identification than either unit used separately.

The department is capable of conducting thermal analysis as well using its sophisticated differential scanning calorimeter (DSC), which can be used to measure a number of characteristic thermal properties of a sample.

All these instruments are coupled with computers that allow sophisticated data acquisition and manipulation.

Finally, the department has a number of minor instruments or equipment: an electrochemical analyzer to study the electrochemical and spectroelectrochemical properties of a compound, parallel reactors to carry out many reactions at a very fast pace; a polarimeter to measure optical rotation of optically active matter, a tube furnace to conduct syntheses and purifications of inorganic compounds, a bomb calorimeter to measure the heat of chemical reactions or physical changes as well as heat capacity and a magnetic balance to measure magnetic susceptibility.

Jessica L Bonjour

Jessica L Bonjour

Associate Professor

Department(s): Chemistry

menkej@uww.edu

Upham Hall 265 |

(262) 472-1088

John W Ejnik

John W Ejnik

Professor

Department(s): Chemistry

ejnikj@uww.edu

Upham Hall 220A |

(262) 472-1083

Steven N Girard

Steven N Girard

Associate Professor

Department(s): Chemistry

girards@uww.edu

Upham Hall 263 |

(262) 472-1096

Marsha L Goodell

Marsha L Goodell

Laboratory Manager

Department(s): Chemistry

goodellm@uww.edu

Upham Hall 243A |

(262) 472-1610

Baocheng  Han

Baocheng Han

Professor

Department(s): Chemistry

hanb@uww.edu

Upham Hall 261 |

(262) 472-5122

Paul G House

Paul G House

Associate Professor

Department(s): Chemistry

housep@uww.edu

Upham Hall 251 |

(262) 472-1551

Shirisha  Jonnalagadda

Shirisha Jonnalagadda

Assistant Professor

Department(s): Chemistry

jonnalas@uww.edu

Upham Hall 259 |

(262) 472-5121

Hephzibah J Kumpaty

Hephzibah J Kumpaty

Professor

Department(s): Chemistry

kumpatyh@uww.edu

Upham Hall 255 |

(262) 472-1097

Kimberly K Naber

Kimberly K Naber

Lecturer 2

Department(s): Chemistry

naberk@uww.edu

Upham Hall 258 |

(262) 472-1245

Julia A Rowehl

Julia A Rowehl

Department Assistant

Department(s): Chemistry

rowehlj@uww.edu

Upham Hall 220 |

(262) 472-1070

Hassimi  Traore

Hassimi Traore

Professor

Department(s): Chemistry

traoreh@uww.edu

Upham Hall 211 |

(262) 472-5123

Christopher T Veldkamp

Christopher T Veldkamp

Professor

Department(s): Chemistry

veldkamc@uww.edu

Upham Hall 257 |

(262) 472-5267

There are numerous scholarship opportunities available to students, both through the university, the College of Letters and Sciences and the Chemistry Department. To make life a little easier, all of the university's scholarship applications and requirement listings are available online.

  • John W. Brooks
  • Paul Wenaas (Junior)
  • AA Upham Science Scholarship
  • Y W Fok Scholarship
  • Goldwater Scholarship

Looking for a Chemistry faculty member to do research with?  Check out some examples below!  Also, click on an individual name to get more information, see pictures, and read student testimonials!

Jessica L Bonjour  

John W Ejnik-   Dr. Ejnik earned his PhD in biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1991. His dissertation topic was entitled “Formation and Reactivity of Metallothionein in Metal and Ligand Substitution Reactions”. For the next six years he served as an officer for the United States Navy. His service with the Navy includes being a  Radiobiology Research Chemist at the Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute in Bethesda, Maryland; a  Production Manager at the Navy Drug Screening Laboratory in Great Lakes, Illinois; and a  Research Chemist at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology in Washington DC. Dr. Ejnik then joined Northern Michigan University where he taught analytical, instrumental, general, forensic, and biochemical courses for five years. He then joined the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater where he continues to teach analytical chemistry courses, serves as program coordinator for the Integrated Science and Business program and serves as the Chair for the Chemistry Department. Dr. Ejnik’s research interest includes analytical chemistry involving trace metal analysis in a wide variety of fields. Primary research is done in the area of biological inorganic chemistry involving transition metals, heavy metals and metal speciation interactions with proteins and small organic molecules. However, research also includes trace metal analysis in the fields of geology, environmental science, forensic science and toxicology.     

Steven N Girard  -   Steven N. Girard, a native of Fairfax Station, Virginia, earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Chemistry and Bachelor of Music Degree in Cello Performance from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois.  His research interests include nanostructured thermoelectric materials, sustainable synthesis of inorganic and nanostructured compounds, and flux chemistry.  He was hired as Assistant Professor of Chemistry at UW-Whitewater in 2014.

Marsha L Goodell

Baocheng Han  -  Research in the fields of (1) metalloporphyrins, which are the model compounds for biological molecules (2) dimetal complexes, and (3) electrocatalytic dechlorination, including (a) synthesize: to make the compounds of interest and then isolate and purify the compounds. (b). characterize the compounds: using spectroscopy techniques such as IR, UV-Vis, NMR, ESR, MS, single crystal diffraction, electrochemistry and spectroelectrochemistry, etc. to identify the compounds. (c) study the properties of the compounds.

Paul G House-   Paul House is an Assistant Professor in the Chemistry Department of UW-Whitewater.   He received a B.A. in chemistry from Kalamazoo College (Kalamazoo, MI) and a M.S. and Ph.D. in physical chemistry from Northwestern University (Evanston, IL).  His graduate work focused on the kinetics and thermodynamics of a group of inorganic molecules involved in catalysis of alkene addition.  After graduate school he worked at the University of Texas Medical Branch (Galveston, TX) with a molecular biologist on the structure and enzymolgy of a DNA repair enzyme. 

Hephzibah J Kumpaty

Kimberly K Naber

Hassimi Traore -

Christopher T Veldkamp -  Christopher Veldkamp, Ph.D., is a Professor of Chemistry. Besides teaching, Dr. Veldkamp does research alongside undergraduate students, many of which have become coauthors on peer-reviewed publications in numerous scientific journals. Dr. Veldkamp completed his Ph.D. at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee in the lab of Dr. Brian Volkman. There Dr. Veldkamp studied protein chemistry, structural biology, and cancer metastasis ultimately generating patents that helped Dr. Volkman start two companies. Dr. Veldkamp was also a visiting student at The Rockefeller University in the lab of Dr. Thomas Sakmar. Immediately prior to coming to UW-Whitewater, Dr. Veldkamp worked as a postdoctoral fellow supported by the American Cancer Society.
View Publications:  https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/?term=veldkamp+ct&sort=date

Careers

Potential Internship Opportunities in Chemistry:

Internship Coordinator: Dr. Kim Naber

Chemistry Major/Emphasis, Minor
Chemistry

Have a love for chemistry? Interested in what makes up the world around you? With a Chemistry major or minor at UW-Whitewater, you will get to explore the many different aspects of chemistry through courses on organic and inorganic chemistry, laboratory science, physical chemistry, quantitative reasoning, and more.

Chemistry (Biochemistry) Major/Emphasis
Chemistry (Biochemistry)

Combine your interest in biology with your interest in chemistry with an emphasis in Biochemistry here at UW-Whitewater. You will take courses focused on subjects related to both sciences, such as organic chemistry, physical chemistry, wildlife ecology, animal physiology, and more.

Chemistry (Liberal Arts) Major/Emphasis
Chemistry (Liberal Arts)

With a Liberal Arts Chemistry emphasis, you can study how physical science ties into the study of humanities with courses on subjects such as physical chemistry, organic chemistry, experimental chemistry, and more.

Chemistry (Professional ACS Approved) Major/Emphasis
Chemistry (Professional ACS Approved)

A Professional American Chemical Society (ACS) Approved Chemistry emphasis will provide you with a deeper and more holistic understanding of chemistry on a professional and career-oriented level. You will take courses on a variety of subjects, such as green chemistry, physics, organic chemistry, data analysis, and more, all to give you the proper training to enter the field of professional chemical studies.

Major/Emphasis, Minor

Have a love for chemistry? Interested in what makes up the world around you? With a Chemistry major or minor at UW-Whitewater, you will get to explore the many different aspects of chemistry through courses on organic and inorganic chemistry, laboratory science, physical chemistry, quantitative reasoning, and more.

Major/Emphasis

Combine your interest in biology with your interest in chemistry with an emphasis in Biochemistry here at UW-Whitewater. You will take courses focused on subjects related to both sciences, such as organic chemistry, physical chemistry, wildlife ecology, animal physiology, and more.

Major/Emphasis

With a Liberal Arts Chemistry emphasis, you can study how physical science ties into the study of humanities with courses on subjects such as physical chemistry, organic chemistry, experimental chemistry, and more.

Major/Emphasis

A Professional American Chemical Society (ACS) Approved Chemistry emphasis will provide you with a deeper and more holistic understanding of chemistry on a professional and career-oriented level. You will take courses on a variety of subjects, such as green chemistry, physics, organic chemistry, data analysis, and more, all to give you the proper training to enter the field of professional chemical studies.