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Assistant Professor

Faculty Director, Coastal Environmental Studieskate

Ph.D. Cornell University, 1999

chemical education, sustainable and green chemistry

Department of Chemistry

Google Scholar Profile




Research Interests

Katherine Aubrecht is a chemist whose research and teaching interests include: the development of learning materials about sustainability for the chemistry curriculum, context-based approaches in chemical education, biodegradable and biorenewable polymers, and environmentally benign synthetic methodology. She earned a B. A. in Chemistry from Reed College and a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from Cornell University.

Selected Publications

Aubrecht, K. B.; Padwa, L.; Shen, X.; Bazargan, G. Sustainable Chemistry Teaching 
Laboratories: A Series of Laboratory Field Trips for High School Students, submitted.

Yang, R.; Aubrecht, K. B.; Ma, H. Wang, R.; Grubbs, R. B.; Hsiao, B. S.; Chu, B. Thiol-modified Cellulose Nanofibrous Composite Membranes for Chromium (VI) and Lead (II) Adsorption. Polymer 2014, 55, 1167-1176. (DOI:10.1016/j.polymer.2014.01.043)

Cai, Y.; Aubrecht, K. B.; Grubbs, R. B. Thermally-induced Changes in Amphiphilicity Drive Reversible Restructuring of Assemblies of ABC Triblock Copolymers with Statistical Polyether Blocks. J. Am. Chem. Soc.2011,133, 1058.(DOI: 10.1021/ja109262h)

Robert, J. L.; Aubrecht, K. B. Ring Opening Polymerization of Lactide to Form a Biodegradable Polymer: an Organic Chemistry Laboratory. J. Chem. Ed. 2008, 85, 258.
(DOI: 10.1021/ed085p258)

Wiberg, K. B.; Hintz, W.; Jarret, R. M.; Aubrecht, K. B. Conformational Preferences for 1,2- and 1,4- Difluorocyclohexane. J. Org. Chem. 2005, 70, 8381. (DOI: 10.1021/jo051049w)

Aubrecht, K. B.; Grubbs, R. B. Synthesis and Characterization of Thermoresponsive Amphiphilic Block Copolymers Incorporating a Poly(Ethylene oxide-stat-Propylene oxide) Block. J. Polym. Sci., Part A: Polym. Chem. 2005, 43, 5156. (DOI: 10.1002/pola.21007)

Aubrecht, K. B.; Hillmyer, M. A.; Tolman, W. B. Polymerization of D,L-Lactide by Monomeric Sn(II) Alkoxide complexes. Macromolecules 2002, 35, 644.
(DOI: 10.1021/ma011873w)

Selected Presentations

Aubrecht, K. B.; Padwa, L. Chemistry of Sustainability: Hands on Workshops for High School Students. International Conference on Chemistry Education, Teaching Green Chemistry in High Schools, Toronto, ON, July 17, 2014, oral presentation.

Aubrecht, K. B.; Hoffmann, J. P.; Cassidy, A. K.; Quigley, H. J. Guided Inquiry Learning Materials Connecting Chemistry to Sustainability, International Conference on Chemistry Education, Green Chemistry Instruction in the Introductory General Curriculum, 
Toronto, ON, July 15, 2014, oral presentation.

Aubrecht, K. B.; Hoffmann, J. P.; Cassidy, A. K.; Quigley, H. J. Inquiry-Based Interdisciplinary Materials on Sustainability for the Chemistry Curriculum, 246th ACS National Meeting, 2013, Chemical Education, # 318, Symposium on NSF Catalyzed Innovations in Undergraduate Curriculum, oral presentation.

Patelunas,  A. J.; Willig, K. N.; Rodriguez, C. N.; Bergman, R. P.;  Mollah, A. K. M.; Aubrecht, K. B. Studies of the Degradation of Poly(L-lactide), Poly(rac-lactide), Poly(ε-caprolactone), and Poly(ethylene terephathlate) in Marine Waters and Sediments. NJACS Polymer Topical Group: Green Materials: Design, Processes,
and Applications, Oct 21, 2010 NJIT, Newark, NJ, poster presentation.

Other Professional Activities

With support from NSF TUES (Transforming Undergraduate Education in Science) program, developing inquiry-based learning materials and a project-based lab for three undergraduate chemistry courses that focus on sustainability.

With support from the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation’s Special Grant Program in the Chemical Sciences, developed a series of hands-on workshops for high school students that link chemistry content to issues of sustainability. These workshops are offered through the Center for Science and Mathematics Education at Stony Brook University.

Named a National Academies Education Fellow in the Life Sciences 2013-2014.

Co-editor of white paper from the workshop “Sustainable Polymers” co-sponsored by the ACS Division of Polymer Chemistry and the RSC, May 2013.

Hosted workshop “DEC Green Chemistry Workshop for Science Teachers in Long Island” with Beyond Benign and the NY State Department of Environmental Conservation, Feb. 2013.

Courses Taught

Chemistry in Technology and the Environment/Chemistry for Environmental Scientists/Chemistry in Society (CHE 310/ENV 320/CHE 591), Chemistry for Environmental Scientists Laboratory (ENV 321), Chemistry, Life, Environment (CHE 115/ENV 115), Tools of Chemistry (CHE 385), General Chemistry (CHE 131-S), Organic Chemistry  (CHE 321-S), General 
Chemistry Laboratory (CHE 133-S)

Retrospective Banquet 2017

Interim Dean Larry Swanson thanks everyone who joined us at our Retrospective Event: This wonderful event brought us all together to reminisce, reflect, and look hopefully to the future." Many thanks to our colleagues who helped put the evening together....

SoMAS 2016 Retrospective Banquet

Many thanks for those that joined us on December 14, 2016 for our Holiday Retrospective with great food and people. The highlight was when Santa arrived and the little ones all got a ride with him. A special thank you to those who helped organize the event including...

SoMAS Convocation 2016

Congratulations to our graduates!  The annual SoMAS Convocation occurred on Friday, May 20, 2016 at the SAC auditorium. Students gathered with their friends and family and SoMAS faculty and staff to celebrate the completion of their journey at Stony Brook University....

Five reasons to join the Sustainability Studies Program

Did you know that Stony Brook University offers more than 200 academic programs, from English to Electrical Engineering? Students’ choices of majors and minors are virtually endless! How can you narrow down your selection?  Consider joining the Stony Brook University...

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