Student Programs

Chemistry Opportunities (CHOPS)

The Chemistry Opportunities (CHOPS) program invites approximately 20 highly qualified prospective students to the UW-Madison Chemistry Department for an all-expense-paid weekend to explore the chemistry Ph.D. graduate program.

CHOPs group


The Catalyst program is designed to help first-year graduate students from underserved populations succeed in the chemistry graduate program at UW-Madison.

Catalyst Students

Graduate Program News

  • Bassam working with test tubes

    Thesis-writing program shares joy of scientific research

    Several years and tens of thousands of words into writing their doctoral dissertation, you’d think few graduate students would sign on to write even more. And yet over the last decade, dozens of University of Wisconsin–Madison students have done exactly that. They’ve chosen to add one more chapter to their thesis, distilling years of hard-won scientific knowledge into prose understandable by the broader public, something rarely found in a dense document typically written for other scientists.

  • Two students named to QISE-NET’S Fall 2020 Cohort

    Two WQI graduate students, Chuanhong (Vincent) Liu (McDermott Group) and Cecilia Vollbrecht (Goldsmith Group), have had their projects awarded funding through QISE-NET, the Quantum Information Science and Engineering Network. Run through the University of Chicago, QISE-NET is open to any student pursuing an advanced degree in any field of quantum science. Liu, Vollbrecht, and other students in their cohort earn up to three years of support, including funding, mentoring and training at annual workshops. All awardees are paired with a mentoring QISE company or national lab, at which they will complete part of their projects. Liu and Vollbrecht explain their projects below.

  • Nanoparticle system captures heart-disease biomarker from blood for in-depth analysis

    Researchers at the University of Wisconsin–Madison have developed a method combining sticky nanoparticles with high-precision protein measurement to capture and analyze a common marker of heart disease to reveal details that were previously inaccessible.

  • More Graduate News posts

Graduate Student Spotlight

  • Merenini

    Grad Spotlight: Princess Merenini

    Princess Merenini, a first-year graduate student in the Department of Chemistry, was one of the 2019 Pei Wang Fellowship award recipients. The Pei Wang Fellowship honors the late Pei Wang (Ph.D. 1952, chemistry) by gifting this award to honorable graduate students at UW–Madison. Merenini is an international student from Nigeria. She moved to the United States in 2016 to pursue her undergraduate education at Savannah State University (SSU). Growing up in Nigeria, Merenini was taught that there were only four “prestigious” career paths: medicine, law, engineering and pharmacy.

  • Nick Riley

    Grad Spotlight: Nicholas M. Riley

    Nicholas M. Riley is a graduate student from Louisville, KY, who attended the University of South Carolina as an undergraduate. He currently works with the Coon Research Group. Tell us about your research. My graduate research …

  • Summer Research Snapshot: Graduate Student Steven Chapman

    The weather in Madison is slowly cooling down, undergraduates are moving in, and the first football game of the season is one week away. We are nearing the end of summertime in Madison. Today marks …

  • More Grad Student Spotlight posts

Graduate Program Contacts

Helen Blackwell

Position title: Norman C. Craig Professor of Chemistry, Associate Chair for the Graduate Program, Director of Graduate Studies


Phone: 608.262.1503

Arrietta Clauss

Position title: Director of Graduate Student Services


Phone: 608-262-0363

Taylor Mathewson

Position title: Graduate Coordinator


Phone: 608-265-0517