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Hillmyer receives 2014 Graduate & Professional Education award

Professor Marc Hillmyer has received a 2014 award for Outstanding Contributions to Graduate and Professional Education.

This award was established in 1999 to recognize contributions to postbaccalaureate, graduate, and professional education. Recipients are chosen for excellence in instruction; involvement in students' research, scholarship, and professional development; development of instructional programs; and advising and mentoring of students.

Hillmyer teaches polymer, materials, organic, physical, and environmental chemistry in the Department of Chemistry. His research interests encompass the design, synthesis, and applications of functional polymeric materials, particularly polymers made from renewable resources, and the use of block polymers to prepare nanostructured materials for water purification, advanced lithography, and energy storage applications.

Hillmyer is also the director of the Department of Chemistry's Center for Sustainable Polymers (CSP), which integrates science, technology, and public policy initiatives and research aimed at reducing dependence on fossil fuels for the creation of plastics. CSP focuses on designing, preparing, and implementing polymers derived from renewable resources for a wide range of advanced applications, and on promoting future economic development, energy efficiency, and environmental sustainability in the emergent area of bio-based products.

"Professor Hillmyer's engaging teaching and mentorship has had a tremendously positive impact on a large number students and postdoctoral associates, many of whom have gone on to leadership positions in academia and industry," said Professor William Tolman, chair of the Department of Chemistry. "We are thrilled that his extraordinary contributions are being recognized by this award."

Hillmyer has received prestigious honors for his teaching and research. His previous honors include being named a Fellow of the American Chemical Society's Division of Polymer Chemistry (2012); receiving the Carl S. Marvel Creative Polymer Chemistry Award from the ACS Division of Polymer Chemistry (2011); being awarded a Distinguished McKnight Professorship for his work on nanostructured polymers for the environment (2010); a Packard Fellowship (2000); a National Science Foundation Career Award (2001); a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award (2000); a McKnight Land-Grant Professorship (2000); the George Taylor Career Development Award (2002); the George Taylor Research Award (2007); the George Taylor Teaching Award (2010) and being named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2009.

Hillmyer will become a member of the Academy of Distinguished Teachers and will have conferred upon him the title Distinguished University Teaching Professor. He will receive a $15,000 award, which reflects the University's strong and enduring commitment to quality undergraduate and graduate education at the University of Minnesota. He will receive the award, Wednesday, April 16, at a ceremony at the McNamara Alumni Center. He also will be introduced to the Board of Regents at its May meeting.

Hillmyer is the seventh Department of Chemistry professor to receive this honor. Other recipients include Timothy Lodge (2012), J. Ilja Siepmann (2010), Christopher Cramer (2005), Peter Carr (2002), Lawrence Que Jr. (2000), and Thomas Hoye (1999).