Chemistry Undergraduate Research Board (CURB)

The Chemistry Undergraduate Research Board (CURB) is a student board dedicated to improving, cultivating, and expanding research opportunities for Undergraduates in the Department of Chemistry.

CURB works closely with the Undergraduate Research Director to identify areas of improvement and to generate solutions toward increasing student involvement in research, fostering a strong community of student researchers in our department, and promoting the achievements of undergraduate researchers.

Here are some things that CURB has done in the past few years:

  • Hosted Undergraduate Supergroup Meetings and the Undergraduate Chemistry Poster Symposium
  • Advocated for and implemented safe practices for undergraduate research during the pandemic
  • Hosted community building events like Chemistry Trivia/Game Nights and study events like Cocoa and Cram
  • Led research-based events such as info session on preparing applications for summer research opportunities, research lab tours, and poster session practices

Upcoming CURB Events

Upcoming CURB Events

There are no upcoming events.

Meet the 2024-25 CURB Members!

Daria Rudykh


Daria is from Madison, WI. She’s currently majoring in chemical engineering and computer science. She joined the Boydston Group in March 2022 on the additive manufacturing team. Some of her many research interests include photochemistry, polymer science, superconductors, and more. Besides science, Daria loves playing the clarinet, cooking, and playing UNO with friends!

Sofia Merrick


Hi! I am currently a sophomore majoring in Biochemistry with a certificate in History. I joined the Cavagnero group in January 2023, where I have been performing research aimed at reducing protein aggregation in bacterial cells. My current project focuses on accomplishing this by inducing mutations in E. coli and determining if these mutations decrease the yield of insoluble protein. Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions about research or your undergraduate experience in general!

Brendan Prosser


Hello! I am a junior double majoring in Biochemistry and Microbiology with a certificate in Global Health. I joined the Blackwell Group in February of 2022. I have worked on various projects involving the use of pan group agonists and pan group inhibitors of bacterial quorum sensing in S. epidermidis and S. aureus. Through the use of PCR, biological reporter assays, and other laboratory techniques, I’ve worked to understand more about quorum sensing using the Agr system. Research has always been a passion of mine since freshman year and I would love to answer any questions!

Khush Patel


Hi! I am a sophomore studying Neurobiology with a Data Science certificate. I joined the Saha Lab fall of 2022, where my project mainly focuses on manufacturing K9 CAR T Cells with the use of CRISPR. Specifically, my project this semester is to develop a CAR construct by utilizing restriction digest and ligation methods in hopes to improve the success rate of CAR trafficking to the cell membrane. I am happy to answer any research-related questions, so feel free to reach out!

Jordan Boysen

I am in a Huang group doing computational chemistry. In my research, I use machine learning and deep learning techniques to study the dynamics and kinetics of biochemical systems. For this research, I use MD simulation data to interpolate the dynamical properties that are useful in many different applications. Recently, I just finished a project that can successfully identify the transition states of biomolecular processes from many short simulation trajectories. Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions about undergraduate research.

Tyler Chang


I am a junior double majoring in computer science and data science. I’ve worked in the Hoskins Lab since January 2023, where I conduct protein purification and enzyme quantification. My active project focuses on a protein called DDX41 and its role in RNA metabolism, specifically working to characterize the enzyme’s nucleic acid binding/unwinding and ATP hydrolysis. I am excited to help anyone get involved in research. Please reach out if you have any questions, especially if they’re related to interdisciplinary research!

Grace Gooley


I’m a senior majoring in Chemistry with a certificate in Environmental Studies. I joined the Hermans group in January 2023. I am working on oxidation on MC chemistry using a flow reactor and using GC-MS for data analysis. Soon, we will analyze our reactor samples with x-rays. I will be working on my senior thesis, which I am really excited about! I have enjoyed my time in research, and I am to answer any questions about research or the chemistry major!

Kylie Plouff


Hi, I am a senior majoring in chemistry with a certificate in math and Asian American studies. I joined the Ge group Spring of 2022 and the Jin group Fall of 2022. I synthesize tunable iron oxide nanoparticles (NPs), which I then functionalize with a small molecule pan-kinase inhibitor. These NPs are used to enrich for low abundance proteins. I am currently exploring a cleavable linker to allow for a simple, low-cost separation of the protein of interest from the NPs. Research is my passion so please feel free to research with questions about research and or chemistry.

Drilon Etemi


Hi everyone! I am a senior majoring in chemistry and religious studies with a certificate in disability rights and services. I joined Dr. Moore at the USDA Forest Products Lab back in 2022 and have been researching North American vegetative foliage using GCxGC-TOFMS to characterize and identify trace medicinal compounds ever since! Participating in undergraduate research has been such a rewarding experience and I would be happy to help you in anyway that I can with your own research journey!

Lexi Sun


Hi, I am a senior majoring in Chemistry, and I am currently working in Hermans group doing CO2 hydrogenation to methanol with Cu, Ga, and Zr ternary catalysts. I am focusing on synthesizing the catalysts and I also do characterizations on the synthesized catalysts by using SEM, XRD, ICP, and temperature programmed reactions. If you have any questions about undergraduate research, I am more than happy to help.