Chemistry professor honored for early-career teaching and research

May 18, 2017 By Libby Dowdall

Randall Goldsmith, a University of Wisconsin–Madison assistant professor of chemistry, is among the 13 U.S. early-career faculty members in the chemical sciences to win a 2017 Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award.

Photo: Randall Goldsmith

Randall Goldsmith

As the flagship program of the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation, the award provides recipients $75,000 in unrestricted research funding. The program seeks to recognize and boost faculty members who excel in both teaching and research and are in the first five years of their careers.

Goldsmith and members of his research group work to develop methods and equipment to examine the behavior of tiny individual molecules during chemical reactions. These single-molecule measurements can reveal interesting insights that are hidden when studying many molecules at one time, in the same way that a room of chattering people makes hearing any one conversation difficult.

The Goldsmith group’s work enables insights on a number of issues in science, such as developing more environmentally friendly catalysts to speed up chemical reactions, learning about human health and disease, and developing effective materials for solar cells.

Goldsmith recently has taught a graduate-level course on single-molecule microscopes and an honors general chemistry course that emphasizes alternative energy.