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ChemSTAR (Student Teaching Assistant or Researcher) engages in their own education and receives mentoring during teaching and research courses or paid academic leadership opportunities.

The ChemSTAR program is unique to the Department of Chemistry, providing flexible options as a Tutor, Learning Assistant, Supplementary Instructor or Lab Instructor, or Researcher (for credit or pay – see table below).  ChemSTAR roles help you to grow as a scientist and leader, while furthering the education of yourself and others. Participation in one of the component options below earns you a free t-shirt and other recognition.

ChemSTAR opportunities

Laboratory Intern: After taking a lab course and earning an A or B, a student can be recommended by the course instructor to be a Lab Intern. Dr. DiVincenzo mentors the intern to serve as an assistant to a laboratory instructor for that course, answering questions and documenting the experience in a journal as part of CHEM 3890.

Supplementary Instruction Leader: After taking a course and excelling, a student can be recommended by a professor who requests an SI Leader. The SI Leader trains with Dr. Cornelia Wills before classes start. The SI Leader then sets up optional meetings outside of class to answer student questions and solve practice problems.

Lab Leader: After taking the Lab Internship course, a student may be eligible to be a Lab Leader. The LL trains with Dr. Friedman and serves as a teaching assistant to teach the laboratory on their own, although LL’s do not grade lab reports.

Learning assistant: After taking a General Chemistry course, students can receive training from Dr. Hosbein and help an instructor to manage group work inside the classroom. 

Tutor:  Tutors must have completed General Chemistry I and II and Organic I and II with grades of B or better.  They should be comfortable assisting students with chemistry questions from individuals and small groups. Tutors are selected and scheduled by Dr. Melton.

Researcher: A student works with a faculty mentor to create new knowledge. The time commitment depends on the student experience and project. 

How to Get Started

Approach a faculty member listed below, ask in the Chemistry Office SCI 3044, or email

Not enough time this semester? Join a club or spend a few hours as a volunteer peer mentor for incoming freshmen!

ChemSTAR Opportunities in Chemistry and Biochemistry




Credit or Pay

Lab Intern

Dr. John DiVincenzo     

CHEM 3890; 1-2 credit hrs

Learning Assistant   

Dr. Katy Hosbein 


Lab Leader

Dr. David Friedman

6 hr/wk; $15/hr

SI Leader

Dr. Cornelia Wills 

6 hr/wk; $15/hr


Dr. Tammy Melton 

flexible hours; $15/hr


Faculty Researchers


CHEM 2880, 3880, 4880; 1-4 credit hrs