Physical Sciences Division announces the Chicago Center for Theoretical Chemistry

March 5, 2019
Natalie Lund

New research center becomes first at university to focus on theoretical chemistry

A new UChicago research center focused on theoretical chemistry will expand the study of chemical systems by examining the fundamental origins of reactivity, electronic behavior, and complex organization. The Chicago Center for Theoretical Chemistry (CCTCh) will foster collaboration between theoretical chemists and with experimentalists in the University of Chicago’s Department of Chemistry, the James Franck Institute, the Institute for Biophysical Dynamics, the Institute for Molecular Engineering, the Department of Physics, and the Biological Sciences Division. 

"We are excited to highlight the historical breadth of theoretical chemistry found at the University of Chicago," said Gregory Voth, The Haig P. Papazian Distinguished Service Professor in Chemistry and director of CCTCh. "CCTCh will provide a foundation for the next generation of chemists to explore new frontiers in chemistry, materials sciences, and biophysics."

As part of its mission to strengthen collaboration, CCTCh will host a prominent theorist on campus for the annual Rice-Berry Lectureship. The center will also sponsor symposia on burgeoning topics in theoretical chemistry where top scientists will present their work and engage in meaningful discussions with UChicago researchers. 

Additionally, CCTCh aims to provide career development support for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows through workshops, multi-investigator collaborations, relationships with national laboratories, and the Industrial Collaboration Program, which will promote connections to job training and internship opportunities. CCTCh will also partner with the Research Computing Center to develop novel software and computational chemistry training programs for faculty and students. 

“Theoretical chemistry at UChicago has a rich history, beginning with the Nobel-Prize winning physicist and chemist, Robert Mulliken,” said Angela V. Olinto, dean of the Physical Sciences Division at UChicago. "Having a dedicated center will further our faculty and students’ groundbreaking research and draw future leaders to the field."

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