Friday, April 5, 2013

The George V. Nazaroff Scholarship

Congratulations are in order for Rachel Warrell, a junior chemistry major, winner of this year's George V. Nazaroff Scholarship. Rachel has already received much attention on our blog, first as the 2010 recipient of the freshman Chemical Rubber Company Achievement Award (while she was a senior in high school) - and more recently as the 2012 winner of a summer SMART grant.  It was high time we advertised the winners of this scholarship and began doing so this year with the plaque held by both Rachel and Professor Emeritus George V. Nazaroff that will hang in the chemistry hallway.

George Nazaroff received his Ph.D. in 1965 from the University of Wisconsin, trained as a theoretical and computational chemist. He then served as professor of chemistry at Michigan State University for six years where he graduated two Ph.D. students. Next he began his teaching career at IU South Bend as chair of the department. Nazaroff was the original physical chemist on our campus and with others he introduced honors sections for the freshman general chemistry sequence and courses in essential oils and aromatherapy. Though others had been department chair during his tenure, he returned to this duty at the end of his career. Nazaroff retired in 2002 and in his honor his colleagues set up this scholarship in his name. Because his efforts at IU were well-known, outside funds poured in to fund the scholarship.

Several years ago Nazaroff came out of retirement to teach part time as an adjunct professor for us.  He is noted for his unique and rigorous approach in the freshman course CHEM C101 Elementary Chemistry for non-science majors.  Public comments on his teaching of this course include ...

   "He is willing to do whatever it takes to help you understand the work ..."
   "Nazaroff was willing to come in on days off and help for hours ..."
   "He has a genuine interest in helping his students pass."
   "He was extremely helpful and made chemistry fun!"

Professor Nazaroff will be honored on April 18 for his five years of service as an adjunct professor after his retirement.  We hope he will continue teaching for our department for many years to come.

The first George V. Nazaroff Scholarship was awarded in 2005 and Rachel is the eighth student to be honored.  Rachel shares with Nazaroff some of the traits mentioned by students above as evidenced by her diligent work as a chemistry tutor for our department. She plans to attend graduate school and has expressed an interest to become a professor. Congratulations again, Rachel! We are looking forward to an excellent senior year with you.