Mohan Traveling to India as Fulbright Specialist on Green Chemistry

Ram Mohan

Aug. 21, 2015 

BLOOMINGTON, Ill.— Illinois Wesleyan University’s Ram Mohan will lecture and provide expertise on green chemistry at Pondicherry University in India as a Fulbright Specialist.

Internationally recognized for his contributions to green chemistry, Mohan is the Wendell and Loretta Hess Professor of Chemistry at Illinois Wesleyan. Mohan’s research, widely published in international chemistry journals, focuses on developing environmentally friendly organic methods guided by green principles. Pondicherry University has been awarded a Fulbright Specialist grant to host Mohan for three weeks later this year.

During his time at Pondicherry, Mohan will deliver a series of lectures on green chemistry to graduate students, help provide expertise in developing green and environmentally friendly laboratory experiments for undergraduate and master’s-level labs, and train Ph.D. students in the practice of green chemistry in labs.

“The lectures will introduce students to fundamental concepts in green chemistry and then highlight the current state of art in the field,” said Mohan. He will present case studies and use real-world examples to highlight environmental problems and how they can be solved using green chemistry principles.

“These experiences will allow me to bring back more green chemistry concepts and ideas to IWU,” said Mohan. “We have been involved in greening our own organic chemistry laboratories over the years in addition to my own research.  Intellectual exchange with scholars at a Ph.D.-granting institution will surely benefit my own research program.”

The Pondicherry grant marks Mohan’s second trip to India on a Fulbright grant. Mohan received a Fulbright-Nehru award to deliver lectures on the principles of green chemistry at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research at Mohali, India, as well as several other Indian colleges and universities during the 2012-2013 academic year.

A 1985 graduate of Hansraj College in Delhi, India, Mohan earned a master’s degree in organic chemistry from the University of Delhi in 1987 and a doctorate in chemistry from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), in 1992.  Following that he conducted postdoctoral research at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. 

In 2011, the Illinois Heartland Section of the American Chemical Society named Mohan Chemist of the Year. He received the distinguished alumni award from his alma mater UMBC in 2002 and the Henry Dreyfus Teacher Scholar award in 2001. His research at IWU, which has involved more than 100 IWU students, has been funded by several grants from the National Science Foundation and the American Chemical Society-Petroleum Research Fund.

The Fulbright Specialist program provides an opportunity to Indian universities and institutions of higher learning to collaborate with U.S. faculty and professionals. In addition to sharing their expertise, specialists can help develop linkages between their respective institutions. The Fulbright Specialist is sponsored by the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, the Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs of the Department of State and the Council for International Exchange of Scholars. Envisioned by U.S. Sen. J. William Fulbright and founded in 1946, the Fulbright program promotes a mutual understanding between the people of the United States and other countries.