Internships and Research



Professor helping students in lab

Internships and Research

St. Kate’s chemistry program offers many opportunities to lead and influence, and increase your competitiveness for future job openings and graduate school through:

  • partnering with professors on original research projects that are presented at regional and national conferences and published in peer-reviewed journals.
  • internships or technical assistant positions in local companies such as 3M, Ecolab, Medtronic and General Mills.
  • paid, professional positions on campus such as lab assistants, science or chemistry tutors and stockroom assistants.

Recent chemistry alumnae and their internships include:

  • Hnouchi Lochungvu, who shadowed physicians at HealthEast Neurovascular Institute and Metropolitan Urologic. She worked with Dr. Tariq Janjua on a long-term study of patients with cerebral vasospasm, and with neurosurgeon Eric Nussbaum and urologist Andrew Porti.
  • Nyasha Kanganga, at Valspar Corp., a paint manufacturer.
  • Abigail Heithoff, who did January-term and summer internships at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute. She investigated how global climate change can alter ocean chemistry.

Undergraduate Research

Besides opportunities for chemistry research at St. Kate’s, undergraduate research experiences are also available at other institutions. These are competitive programs that are primarily designed for students to work during the summer between their junior and senior years.

Here is a sample:

  • Lauren Brin, ACS-certified chemistry major with a Spanish minor, spent a January term as a research assistant at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. She also studied potential malaria treatments as a research assistant at Mayo Clinic.
  • Hannah Kaup, a double major in chemistry and biology, spent a summer in California with St. Kate’s Professor Jill Welter conducting research on biogeochemical cycling of nutrients in streams at the Angelo Coast Range Preserve.
  • Elizabeth Kringen, ACS-certified chemistry major with minors in Latin and biology, spent part of her senior year at the School for Field Studies in Australia studying impact of reforestation on water quality in the rainforest. She also conducted summer research on prairie restoration methods with St. Catherine Professor Gina Mancini-Samuelson at Belwin Conservancy in Afton, Minnesota.
  • Sarah Sullivan, a double major in chemistry and Catholic studies, worked on a research project with St. Kate’s Professor Daron Janzen and joined the Lando/National Science Foundation Summer Undergraduate Research Program at the University of Minnesota. She synthesized organometallic molecules for use as light-emitting electrochemical cell (LEC) and light-emitting diode (LED) materials.
  • Alouisa Thames, a biochemistry concentration with minors in Spanish and theology, collaborated with Dr. Gina Mancini-Samuelson to study the impact of re-introducing bison on prairie soil nutrients at Belwin Conservancy.

Our students have been invited to present research papers statewide and nationally at events such as the

  • Minnesota Academy of Sciences annual meeting
  • Winchell Undergraduate Symposium

Other Research and Leadership Opportunities​

You may also enhance your research or leadership skills at St. Kate’s:

Science @ St. Kate's Day

Each year, graduating students share findings from their senior research with the University community. Past topics include "Glow Sticks," "Metallothionein as a Bioindicator of Freshwater Metal Pollution," "Eucalyptus Oil" and The Synthesis of the Active Ingredient in Acne Medication: Benzoyl Peroxide."

Mayo Innovation Scholars program

This program brings together students from a variety of undergraduate disciplines to research Mayo Clinic invention ideas and create business plans for a medical product. Learn more in our University magazine, SCAN.

Assistantship Mentoring Program (AMP)

AMP is St. Kate’s innovative work-and-learning experience that pairs students in their junior or senior year with faculty or staff mentors on a specific project. Students are paid for up to 13 hours each week. Chemistry major Sigrid Barklund worked with Professors Patricia Dunlop and Ken Vos to develop a new environmental science course. Learn more about AMP in our University magazine, SCAN »

Extracurricular activities

The chemistry club stimulates interest in chemistry as a profession, regardless of major. It hosts potluck dinners, networking events with professionals in science, community volunteer opportunities and St. Kate’s Chemistry Week.

St. Kate's has the Antonian Scholar Honors Program and more than 24 honors societies, including Iota Sigma Pi for chemistry majors. Learn more »

Here is an example of how chemistry majors are involved in the St. Kate’s community:

  • Marissa Donatelle is president of the Medical Interest Group and was chair of the “The Little Red Dress” fundraiser for the American Heart Association. She is a member of the Wildcats swim team and Lambda Sigma Tau service sorority.
  • Lauren Brin served as a Student Senate member and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa as a junior.
  • Melinda Kounthapanya served as co-president of the St. Catherine International Student Organization. She was also on the organizing committee for the Graduating Students of Color dinner.