Louise M. Liable-Sands, PhD
- Associate Professor
- Director of Advising & Student Success of College of Arts & Sciences
- PhD, Inorganic Chemistry (2000)
University of Delaware (DE)
The majority of my teaching load comprises teaching general chemistry to both science and non-science students. I spend a tremendous amount of time developing new ways to connect the macroscopic world to the microscopic world of molecules. The connections between what we can see and measure and what we cannot see is where I believe students struggle with chemistry. This connection is critical for students to be able to apply their knowledge to a new problem beyond their knowledge base.
I am constantly connecting what we can observe to what is happening on the particle level. Students are expected to learn by doing instead of by watching me. I love to include demonstrations in my lectures so that students can draw conclusions based on evidence of what they observe. This process helps students become critical thinkers.
One of my research projects is exploring the reactivity of low valence manganese thioether complexes by synthesizing and characterizing novel complexes. These complexes are modeled to mimic active sites in enzymes, such as manganese superoxide dismutase. The new manganese (I) and manganese (II) complexes are synthesized and characterized using spectroscopic techniques.
Once the complex structures are determined, reaction with small molecules including molecular oxygen will be performed. Undergraduate students begin their work by synthesizing the thioether ligand, which is performed under an inert atmosphere. Subsequent reactions with manganese compounds are performed in a glove-box. A student is currently exploring the atom economy of the ligand synthesis and will apply the principles of green chemistry to improve the synthesis.
Professional Affiliations & Memberships
American Chemical Society (ACS)
- Widener Science Faculty and Staff Present at STEM Conference
Itzick Vatnick, professor of biology, environmental science and sustainability, and biochemistry; Louise Liable-Sands, associate professor of chemistry; Meghan Klems, assistant professor of chemistry; and Amy Yarlett, director of exploratory studies, presented at the Association of American Colleges and Universities STEM Conference in Chicago, Illinois on Nov. 8. They presented "A Multidisciplinary Faculty and Professional Staff Learning Community to Support Retention."
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