ACS Travel Grant Award Winners
The Sacramento local section initially decided to offer two $250 travel grant awards for the 248th ACS National Meeting in San Francisco in August. However, we had such a great response to our call for applications that we decided to offer four awards. Thank you to everyone who applied, and congratulations to our winners!
Tobias Sherbow, UC Davis
Nicholas Ball-Jones, UC Davis
Irina Dotsenko, University of the Pacific
Hailey Hibbard, UC Davis
Hailey Hibbard, an working under the supervision of Prof. Annaliese Franz at UC Davis, has been investigating the catalytic abilities and mechanism of NaBArF catalyzed Michael addition with trans-b-nitrostyrene, as an important model reaction for C–C bond-forming reactions. Although tetrakis(3,5-trifluoromethyl)phenylborate (BArF) is well-known for its role as a “non-coordinating” counterion, there are very limited studies of NaBArF demonstrating catalytic activity on its own. Hailey has demonstrated that using NaBArF as a catalyst allows reactions to occur with several nuclophiles for which there are very few other examples of catalysts that have been reported, making this a major finding of interest for mechanistic reasons as well as synthetic applications. To identify the role of the NaBArF, Hailey has performed various mechanistic studies including 1H NMR binding studies, 11B NMR studies for complex formation, and studies comparing activity of NaBArF with other known catalysts. “Hailey’s research progress has been very impressive! She is always eager to learn a new technique and has taken ownership of her project above the level of most undergraduate students,” says Franz. A manuscript describing her work is currently in preparation.
By Michelle Faust