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David Bricker
IU Media Relations

Last modified: Friday, June 16, 2006

Computational chemist Baik wins Cottrell Scholarship

June 16, 2006

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University Bloomington chemist Mu-Hyun Baik has been named one of this year's Cottrell Scholars by the Research Corporation. The scholarships provide $100,000 to promising junior faculty members in the physical sciences.

Eligibility for the honor is limited to professors in the third year of their first tenure-track appointments. The Cottrell Scholarship is intended to relieve the pressure many young faculty experience during their first few years, when teaching and grant-writing constantly compete for a young professor's attentions. According to the program guidelines, the awards "also seek to reinforce faculty mentoring, communication, and a heightened appreciation for instruction in university science departments."

Chemist Mu-Hyun Baik uses computers to model the intricacies of molecular structure, behavior and chemistry.

Print-Quality Photo

In a letter to IU President Adam W. Herbert, James M. Gentile wrote, "It gives us great pleasure to recognize the promise of Professor Baik as a teacher-scholar with this award and to join with Indiana University at Bloomington in support of the development of this young scientist."

Baik is IU Bloomington's second Cottrell Scholar in recent years. Andrew Feig, also a chemist, won the award in 2002.

Baik, an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and the IU School of Informatics, uses computers and informatics approaches in modeling the behavior of complex molecules. His Cottrell Scholarship-funded project, "Toward a quantitative understanding of diastereoselective carbocyclizations through quantum chemical modeling," will serve dual research and teaching functions. The project investigates an area of organic chemistry related to drug discovery and development, and also helps advanced chemistry students understand how individual atoms in organic molecules interact during dramatic chemical changes.

Three of this year's 13 Cottrell Scholars are Indiana scientists. The University of Notre Dame's Masaru K. Kuno and Purdue University's Erica W. Carlson were also selected.

The Tucson-based Research Corporation, founded in 1912, is one of the most important private foundations that exist for the sole purpose of advancing scientific research.

To speak with Baik, please contact David Bricker, IU Media Relations, at 812-856-9035 or