Professional Development

ChemPD 2023-2024 Leadership Team

ChemPD Hosts Two-Time Nobel Prize Winner Prof. K. Barry Sharpless

2022 ChemPD Chemistry Career Day: Poster Session

UC Santa Barbara Success Stories Panel with Bruno Caputo (NEXT Energy), Corey Hoven (NEXT Energy), Louis Perez (Apeel Sciences), and Eric Pressly (Epres, Olaplex)

ChemPD 2021-22 Leadership Team


2022 ChemPD Chemistry Career Day: Industry Panel

2022 ChemPD Career Day: Company Booths

Sponsor ChemPD





To become an official ChemPD Chemistry Career Symposium sponsor, we respectfully request donations >$1,500. Any donations are welcome to expand professional development opportunities, establish a ChemPD Graduate Student Fellowship, and engage UC Santa Barbara alumni. Thank you.

ChemPD Mission Statement


  • Graduate student led organization
  • Hosts annual Chemistry Career Symposium
  • Organize professional development events & workshops
  • Connect industry, alumni, and students
  • Equitable access to career opportunities
  • Confidence in career exploration and preparation




Previous Events


Upcoming Events






Leadership Team

  • Co-Presidents: Elizabeth Murphy, Asish Ninan Chacko

Development Chair: Emile Morin

Outreach Coordinator: Priya Kandiyal

Designer Officer: Cassidy Tobin

Alumni Coordinators: An Pham, Elif Sila Akbulut

Faculty Advisor: Professor Andrea Carlini


ChemPD Liaisons are representatives from UCSB chemistry research groups who assist in ChemPD events.


Kaylaa Gutman (Zhang), Leroy Lu (Zakarian)


Phoebe Hertler (Hayton)


Takashi Kaneko (Hawker/Read de Alaniz), Megan Murphy (Hawker/Bates)


Brian Roehrich (Sepunaru)


Mel Susman (Butler)



Chemical Sciences Student Seminar (CS3)

CSSS Committee: Joshua Straub, Jamie Shaum, Aneta Jelowicki, Claire Tran, Kendrick Nguyen, Maša Podunavac, Evan Janzen



Our mission is to consistently provide a highly-interdisciplinary, well-attended, student-run venue for advanced graduate students and postdoctoral scholars to communicate their excellent chemical science research in partnership with sponsoring institutions.

The 7th annual Chemical Sciences Student Seminar (CS3) series ran from October through December of 2017, supporting 8 seminars with 10 graduate student speakers and 6 postdoc speakers, with great success!

We are deeply committed to fostering diversity in STEM disciplines, especially gender diversity. We are proud to announce that 44% of our 2016 speakers were female: a new CS3 record!

CS3 will continue to hold weekly chemical science general audience seminars on Mondays at noon in Winter and Spring quarter 2019. The seminar includes a sponsorship presentation followed by two 15-minute research talks per week. Sign up and give a talk for a chance to be awarded a scholarship or $500 travel grant- or even spark a collaboration!


In order to incentivize abstract submissions and reward excellent talks, CS3 awards travel grants to the best speakers. This past year, the generous support of the International Center for Materials Research allowed us to award 3 travel grants for the best graduate student talks, and the Center for Science and Engineering Partnerships sponsored an additional 2 awards for the best postdoc presentation.

Congratulations to our 2017 winners: Julija Vinckeviciute, Anriudha Banerjee, Veronica Laos, Ranajay Saha, and Athina Anastaski.



Students presenting from the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry have an opportunity to be awarded with the Best Scientific Presentation Award. This award was created in 2013 to honor students who effectively gave general research presentations during the Chemical Sciences Student Seminar.

Eligibility of this award requires the student to be in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, hold graduate standing at the time of voting, and present during the Seminar Series. All of the eligible students are then voted upon at the conclusion of the Seminar Series by their Graduate peers, faculty, and staff members. Voters are encouraged to think of who best presented their research to a general audience for broad understanding. This award is presented during the Spring Graduate Student Symposium.

Scientific Communication Award Recipients:

Year    Recipient                     Presentation Title

2013    Zachary Henson         Towards environmentally friendly processing of organic semiconductors

2013    Peter Burks                 Quantum dots as sensitizers for photochemical drug delivery

2013    Robert Levenson         The Bacterial Flagellar Motor: Understanding an amazing Nanomachine



The Chemical Sciences Student Seminar (CS3) was founded by Dr. Peter T. Burks in 2011 and officially launched in January of 2012.

Peter received his Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry under the supervision of Peter C. Ford in 2013. His research efforts focused on harnessing the properties of nanomaterials to design new light-activated drug delivery platforms. Outside of research, Peter led several science outreach programs and completed a certificate in entrepreneurship. In late 2011, he noticed a communication disconnect between graduate students in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. This inspired him to found a new type of seminar series that focused intently on quality communication and presentation of research. An unquestionable result of Peter's drive and initiative, the Chemical Sciences Student Seminar was therefore created. Peter designed the seminar format, recruited talented speakers, and raised the necessary funds to enable the first edition of the CS3 to take place in January 2012. By the second edition in fall 2012, the CS3 was one of the highest regularly attended student seminars on campus. This early success enabled Peter to recruit talented graduate student volunteers to take over leadership upon his graduation and to continue to grow the success of CS3. As a result CS3 has established longevity and status as a highlight and point of pride for the department. The current members of the CS3 Executive Committee continue to uphold Peter's original vision for the series: quality communication and presentation of research.

Photo: Dr. Peter Burks (right) with Department Chair Dr. Rick Dahlquist at the launch of CS3, January 19, 2012