Chemistry Memorial and Honor Funds

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Eunice S. Wu Memorial Fund for Chinese American Women in Chemistry

Eunice Wu

In memory of Eunice Su (MS 1961), family and friends established the Eunice S. Wu Memorial Fund for Chinese American Women in Chemistry. Each year, an Asian American woman studying and excelling in chemistry at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will be awarded a scholarship on May 26th, Eunice’s birthday.

Eunice Su was born in Beijing, China on May 26, 1937. Eunice and her family fled to Taiwan in 1949, where she later graduated from Tunghai University in Taichung, Taiwan in 1959 with a degree in chemistry. Eunice received her Master’s degree in chemistry from University of Illinois where her father, Jasen Su, taught as a visiting professor for a number of years.

Eunice began her career working for Dr. Henry A. Lardy at the Institute for Enzyme Research in Madison, Wisconsin between 1961-1963. In 1964, Eunice worked as a chemist for Pabst Blue Ribbon in Milwaukee before she joined the staff of the Blood Center of Wisconsin. In 1967, Eunice worked as a clinical chemist at the Montefiore Hospital outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, before she moved with her husband to Cherry Hill, New Jersey in 1970 to raise their three children. Beginning in 1971, Eunice supervised the Radioimmunoassay Laboratory at the Graduate Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from which she retired in 1987.

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Herbert Gutowsky Scholarship Fund

This scholarship was established by the leadership of University of Illinois Professor Emeritus Cliff Dykstra to honor Professor Herbert S. Gutowsky. 

Herbert Sander Gutowsky was a pioneer in the field of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, showing how this technique could be used as an important experimental tool for studying the structure and dynamics of molecules in solids, liquids, and gasses. He was the first chemist to apply the NMR method to chemical research, and his investigations into the principles of NMR and its uses had a monumental effect on virtually all scientific investigations requiring the analysis of molecular structure. In short, Gutowsky’s breakthrough discoveries made NMR one of the most important spectroscopic tools in chemical and biochemical research. 

Gutowsky became head of the Department of Chemistry at Illinois in 1967, and in 1970 he oversaw the creation of the School of Chemical Sciences, which included the departments of chemistry and chemical engineering. He served as Director of SCS from 1970 to 1983. Gutowsky’s many achievements were recognized by his election to the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. He was also elected a fellow of the American Physical Society and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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Willis H. Flygare Memorial Chemistry Lecture Fund


The Willis H. Flygare Memorial fund supports the Flygare Memorial Lectures held each year by the Department of Chemistry in honor of Dr. Willis Flygare. 

Willis "Bill" Flygare was a professor of Chemistry at Illinois from 1961 until his death in 1981. During that time he directed more than 30 PhD students.  A visionary chemist, he developed a new experimental method involving the molecular Zeeman effect. Utilizing this effect, he measured most of the known molecular quadrupole moments and magnetic susceptibility anisotropies. He developed a highly sensitive microwave spectrometer by combining molecular beams with Fourier transform techniques. 

Dr. Flygare was a member of the National Academy of Sciences.  Following his death in 1981, a special issue of the Journal of Chemical Physics was published in his memory, with 117 articles written by friends and colleagues.

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Timothy A Nieman Memorial Scholarship Fund

The Timothy Nieman Memorial Scholarship fund provides support for undergraduate students who have demonstrated exceptional achievement and dedication to the field. 

Established in 1998, the fund honors Timothy A. Nieman, who served the Department of Chemistry as a Professor of Analytical Chemistry from 1975 to 1997.  An accomplished professor and scientist, Dr. Nieman also published works with collaborators such as Douglas Skoog, F. James Holler and James J. Leary.

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Harold R Snyder Fund in Organic Chemistry for Current Use

The Harold R Snyder Fund in Organic Chemistry for Current Use supports a research program for students with the potential for and interest in the study of organic chemistry at the graduate level.  These students originate either from the University of Illinois or from outside four-year institutions. 

Harold R. Snyder began his relationship with the University of Illinois as an undergraduate student, receiving his B.S. in chemistry in 1931, after having done senior research with Professor R. C. Fuson. He completed his Ph.D. at Cornell University in 1935, where he carried out his thesis research with Professor John R. Johnson, who had previously been on the faculty at Illinois. He spent only a year in industry before seeking an academic position. In 1937 Roger Adams brought him to Illinois where he joined the teaching staff. Together with Roger Adams, Carl "Speed" Marvel, and R. C. Fuson, they became known as the "Big Four" at Illinois.

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Robert Lyle Schmidt Memorial Scholarship Fund

Gregory Linn Schmidt established the Robert Lyle Schmidt Memorial Scholarship in his father’s memory to be awarded to a student from a Chicago public high school. 

Robert Lyle Schmidt was born in Cicero, Illinois in 1920. With the exception of his college years and the years of World War II, he lived his entire life in the Chicago area. He was a dedicated lifelong fan of the Cubs, Bears, and Blackhawks. He received his B.S. in Chemistry in 1942 from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. At the start of his senior year, he earned a fellowship for graduate study at the University of North Carolina. 

On December 7, 1941, those plans were changed. Immediately after graduation, he was hired to help run a new factory which produced TNT, but within a year, he enlisted in the Navy. He entered officers' training and specialized in the new technology of radar. Upon discharge from the Navy in 1946, he returned to his wife and newborn son and began working in the chemical industry. At the same time, he and his father, a chemical company salesman, started a company in his father's garage. That company became Riverside Laboratories. Initially its primary product was industrial enamels, including the red paint on Radio Flyer wagons. But, Bob Schmidt was not content to produce a single product. He was an inventor and a chemist with the ability to visualize novel polymeric structures. The primary
product of his creativity was the first successful use of resin-impregnated paper to put a high quality surface on soft wood and particleboard, a process which became the standard of the furniture industry. 

Bob Schmidt was an athlete, a singer, a violinist, a pilot, and a loving father to his two sons, but nothing was more important to him than the value of a good education. His experience at the University of Illinois was his model. His deep affection for the university was present throughout his life and he was very happy to have two sons and a grandson follow his footsteps to Urbana-Champaign.

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J. C. Martin Memorial Student Fund in Chemistry

The J. C. Martin Memorial Fund was created to support graduate students by awarding them travel grants to allow attendance at professional meetings. 

This fund was established in 1999 to honor Professor James Cullen Martin, who served on the Chemistry faculty at the University of Illinois from 1956 untill his retirement in 1985.  As an organic chemistry professor, J.C. Martin served on the editorial advisory board of the Journal of Organic Chemistry in 1972 and on the executive committee of organic chemistry for the American Chemical Society from 1971-1973.

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G Frederick Smith Memorial Lecture Series Fund

This lecture series was established to honor G. Frederick Smith through the generosity of Smith's descendants, via GFS, Inc. and the Delaware County Foundation. G. Frederick Smith was a professor of chemistry at the University of Illinois from 1921 until his death in 1976. 

Professor Smith, one of the most colorful chemists of the century, was a man of enormous vitality, who devoted himself to analytical chemistry in teaching, research, and business. Smith authored 173 papers, 25 of which reported work done after his retirement. He is most famous for championing the use of perchloric acid as an analytical reagent, and his efforts in cerate oxidimetry are also noteworthy. In addition, he (together with Charles Goetz) developed the use of nitrous oxide as a propellant for whipped cream, the first spray product in a pressurized can ever marketed. 

He and his brothers founded the G. Frederick Smith Chemical Company, known today as GFS, Incorporated. It still operates in Columbus, Ohio, and is the largest manufacturer of perchlorates, for uses other than rocket propulsion or explosives, in the world.

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Mr. Shin-Cheng Yu and Dr. June C. Y. Tsao-Yu Memorial Student Travel Award Fund

The Yu Family established a Graduate Education Award to commemorate the legacy of their parents, Mr. Shin-Cheng Yu and Professor June Chien-Yu Tsao-Yu, who came from China to receive their graduate education at the University of Illinois, Urbana/Champaign.

After graduation from Illinois, they returned to China and dedicated their professional lives to the modernization of China and education of the younger generations in that country. It was the very fine education that they received at the University of Illinois that enabled them to establish their legacy in education, science, and public service in China. It also inspired their children to come to this country for higher education and to pursue their dreams.

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Vanderveer Voorhees Memorial Fund

This award is presented each year to the 4th year graduate student(s) with the most creative Independent Research Proposal in honor of Vanderveer Voorhees. 

Dr. Voorhees was a graduate student with Professor Roger Adams and was the coauthor on the seminal paper describing catalytic hydrogenation with palladium oxide (J. Am. Chem. Soc 1922, 44, 1397-405), which came to be known as Adams' catalyst.

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Reynold C Fuson Memorial Award in Chemistry

The Reynold C. Fuson Memorial Award in Chemistry provides unrestricted funds for use on immediate or vital Department of Chemistry needs.  Since its inception, this fund has been used to support awards, scholarships, new academic and research programs, and student loans, among other equally vital uses. 

Reynold Clayton Fuson, known to his friends and colleagues as "R.C.", was a distinguished member of the University of Illinois faculty in Chemistry for 35 years.  A devoted educator, he supervised 76 undergraduate researchers, 154 doctoral candidates and 15 postdoctoral fellows during his tenure at Illinois.  His accolades are many, and include authorship or co-authorship of five textbooks - including the well-known "Systematic Identification of Organic Compounds", which remains a classic to this day.  Among his many scientific contributions was the origination of the principle of vinylogy.  A member of the National Academy of Sciences, he also was hailed as a charter member of the Center for Advanced Study at the University of Illinois, and received honorary degrees from the University of Illinois and the University of Minnesota.  Though held in high esteem throughout the chemical field, Fuson's deepest interest always remained with the welfare and education of his students.

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Zumdahl Teaching Award Fund


The Zumdahl Teaching of Chemistry Award was established with contributions from former students and friends in honor of Steven Zumdahl. 

Steven S. Zumdahl received his B.S. degree in Chemistry from Wheaton College (Illinois) in 1964 and his Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Illinois (Urbana) in 1968.  He taught at the University of Illinois for over 35 years, where he served as a Professor and Associate Head of Chemistry and Director of the General Chemistry Program.

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