Meet the Board

Lily Mawby


Lily is a 4th year graduate student in the Lear lab studying coatings for aluminum microparticles to be used in additive manufacturing as well as the electronic effects of dynamic ligands on gold nanoparticles. She is from Fairfax, VA and received a B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Richmond. In her free time Lily enjoys exercising, reading, drawing, and spending time with friends. Her favorite part about PSU Chemistry is how much everyone cares about having and creating a good graduate school experience.

Role: The President serves as the spokesperson for the organization and presides at all meetings.

Eli Wenger

Vice President
Eli is a 3rd year graduate student in the Bollinger-Krebs lab studying the mechanisms of iron-containing enzymes that use molecular oxygen to do challenging and interesting chemistry. He grew up and did his undergrad in Harrisonburg, VA (the Friendly City!), earning his bachelor’s in Biochemistry at Eastern Mennonite University. Outside the lab, Eli likes to run, cook, play video games, and watch too much cable news. He loves the community and interdisciplinary feel of Penn State Chemistry and is excited to serve the department as GSA VP!
Role: The Vice-President serves as President when the President is unable to do so and presides over the delegates and manages the Mentorship Program between first-year and older graduate students.


Ryan Szukalo


Ryan is a 2nd year graduate student in the Noid Lab studying coarse-grain theory of the state point dependence of complex condensed phase systems.  Ryan is from Mississauga, Ontario, Canada and has a B.Sc. in chemistry from the University of Western Ontario.  Ryan conducted undergraduate research in both computational and experimental groups, studying charged nanodroplets and the radiolytic corrosion of copper for the long-term storage of nuclear fuel, respectively.

Apart from chemistry, Ryan is a big sports fan and intensely follows the NBA and the world champion Toronto Raptors.  Naturally as a Canadian, he is also a hockey fan who attends every Nittany Lion home game, and is constantly looking for ways to play hockey while here in State College.  His favorite part about Penn State Chemistry is the non-competitive, collaborative environment that the department has, which makes going to work everyday easy and enjoyable.

Role: The Treasurer is in charge of handling all organizational finances. 


Laura Wickham


Laura is a 3rd year graduate student in the Giri Lab studying the dicarbofunctionalization of unactivated alkenes. Laura is from Middletown, NJ and received a B.S. in Chemistry from Marist College. While at Marist, she worked with Dr. Jocelyn Nadeau synthesizing and studying the photophysical properties of solvatochromic compounds containing fluorene-quinoxaline donor-acceptor chromophores.

Outside of lab, Laura enjoys spending time with her friends, attending sporting events and concerts, as well as watching baking shows. Her favorite part about the Penn State Chemistry Department is the collaborative environment and the feeling of being a big family.

Role: The Secretary is responsible for maintaining a list of active membership, maintaining the Constitution, recording attendance and minutes at all meetings, and administering the listserv, Facebook page, and website.


Auston Butterfield

Chairman of Professional Development

Auston is a 3rd year graduate student in the Schaak lab studying the synthesis and surface assembly of complex nanoparticles. He is from Salt Lake City, UT and received a B.S. in chemistry from Southern Utah University. Prior to coming to Penn State, Auston spent two years working in industry in the clinical toxicology department of ARUP Laboratories in Salt Lake City, UT.

Outside of lab he enjoys attending Penn State football games, playing on the chemistry intermural flag football team, rock climbing, and outreach events. The things he loves most about the PSU Chemistry Department is its interdisciplinary environment, dedication to continually improving, and having access to state-of-the-art instrumentation.

Role: The Chair of Professional Development Events is responsible for organizing and overseeing all events classified as professional development events.


Sonic Cheon

Chairman of Community Outreach

Sonic is a 3rd year graduate student in the Zarzar group where he studies particle adsorption at various liquid-liquid interfaces.  He’s from Fairfax, VA and received a B.S. in Chemistry at the  College of William and Mary. Outside of lab he enjoys playing music, exercising, and making new foods. His favorite part about the PSU Chemistry Department is the sense of community and the wonderful friends he made along the way.
Role: The Chair of Outreach and Community-Building Events is responsible for organizing and overseeing all events classified as outreach or community-building events.


Jessica Schulze

External Liaison

Jessica is a 3rd year graduate student in the van Duin lab studying computational simulations applied to Cryo-EM structural biology experiments. She is from Salt Lake City, UT and received a B.S. in Chemistry and Mathematics from the University of Utah in 2017. Jessica enjoys reading, teaching ballet classes, playing piano, and exploring new towns in her spare time. Her favorite thing about Penn State’s Chemistry Department is its dedication to collaborations and promoting students to explore different scientific fields throughout their studies.

Role: The External Liaison is responsible for acting as a liaison between the Chemistry Graduate Student Association and other Graduate Student Associations and groups at the University Park campus.