Site Map | Contact | Directory
General Science Department OfficeDirect questions and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
Department ChairJennifer SorensenENGR 405B
Director of General Science & Assistant Professor
TeachingSince March 2000 Dr. Jen Sorensen has taught in the Chemistry Department at
Seattle University, and since July 2005 she has been Director of the General
Science program. Prior to that, she was an instructor in the Chemistry
Department at the University of Georgia. Dr. Sorensen teaches
introductory/general chemistry, environmental chemistry, interdisciplinary
science courses, and the senior synthesis (research) series for general science
and environmental science majors. She has mentored at least ten undergraduate
research students conducting original research, and has supervised over 160
seniors writing a literature-based senior thesis.
scholarly work has spanned three different areas: science
education, sustainability, and computational chemistry.
Science Education: Jen Sorensen was
co-Principal Investigator of Inquiry
in the Community (IC), a collaborative research project with
Girl Scouts of Western Washington. This project developed training courses for
Girl Scout troop leaders that empowers them to facilitate inquiry science
activities with their troops. In addition to the training curricula, the
project provides ongoing activity ideas, science content support, and a
community of practitioners to reinforce inquiry habits. IC was funded through
a grant from the National Science Foundation.
Sorensen was a science team leader for the Washington State College Readiness
Project Phase II. In this capacity, she worked with high school teachers to
develop teaching materials and techniques that help cultivate the attributes
students should develop to achieve readiness for college-level science
courses. Prior to that, she was a key member of the Phase I
Science Team that defined college readiness content, skills, and
Starting in 2014, Sorensen is looking forward
to collaborating with colleagues in the College of Education to create new
pathways for undergraduate science and engineering majors to become
credentialed science and math teachers.
Sustainability: Jen Sorensen was
the faculty leader of SUPER - the Seattle U. Project on the Environment and
Recycling. Through SUPER, students apply their chemical and scientific
knowledge to environmental problems impacting the campus community. For
example, we developed a suite of tests to perform process monitoring of
Seattle University's on-site composting facility. Student projects have studied
such diverse topics as mercury recycling in fluorescent light bulbs and
compostable cups and plates.
Outside of the classroom,
Sorensen was one of two faculty mentors to a novel team project that included
graduate business students and an undergraduate environmental science
student. Their research led to a community education and
marketing plan for a low-technology water filtration system used in
At university level, Dr. Sorensen worked with a
team of colleagues from across the university to conceptualize and launch the
Center for Environmental
Justice and Sustainability, Seattle University’s first
“Center for Excellence.” The CEJS is now an intellectual hub of
student and faculty scholarship across academic disciplines.
Computational Chemistry: Dr.
Sorensen’s research in computational chemistry has used both quantum and
classical mechanics to model molecular systems of biological interest. These
methods are used to predict the molecular shape and properties of novel drug
candidates. Prior to her doctoral research in the Computational Center for
Molecular Structure and Design at the University of Georgia, Sorensen was a
Fulbright Student Scholar at the Technical University of Budapest, Hungary.
During that time she used ab initio methods to study
Facilitation in a Community Organization, J. Sorensen, Proceedings of the
2013 Western Region Research Conference on the Education of Adults,
Seattle Washington (2013).
Energies Using First Principle Theories – Consideration of Basis Set
Superposition Error and Fragment Relaxation, K. N. Kirschner, J. B. Sorensen,
J. P. Bowen, J. Chem. Educ., 84, 1225 (2007).
Calculations and Molecular Mechanics (MM3) Parameterization of
Protonated-Neutral Amine Hydrogen Bonds, J. B. Sorensen, A. H. Lewin, J. P.
Bowen, J. Org. Chem., 66, 4105 (2001).
Inquiry Science in Girl Scouts” J. Sorensen, S. Lingwood, over 300 Girl Scout
staff and volunteer facilitators trained through 1-3 day workshops, multiple
locations in Washington, Oregon, California, and Maine, February-October 2012.
"Demonstrating 'Numeracy' in Non-Major Chemistry Courses"
J. Sorensen, 18th Biennial Conference on Chemical Education, Ames, IA, July
"Molecular Mechanics (MM3) Development of a Polyamine
Force Field" J. B. Sorensen, A. H. Lewin, J. P. Bowen, 216th Meeting of the
American Chemical Society, Boston, MA, August 1998.
Center for Environmental Justice
and Sustainability Co-Founder, Seattle University
University Core Revision Committee, Seattle University
Second-Term General Chemistry Examination Committee, American Chemical
Seattle Expanding Your Horizons Planning
“Seattle University at the Frontiers of Environmental Justice and
Sustainability” Seattle University Mission Day, April 2013.
“A Faculty Perspective on Jesuit Education at Seattle University”
Seattle University Summer Orientation keynote speech to parents, July 2008,
“Majors and Careers in the Chemical Sciences”
American Chemical Society/American Association of Clinical Chemistry workshop
for high school teachers, Bellevue WA, October 2005.
“Encouraging the Next Generation of Female Scientists and Engineers”
University of Washington Women in Science and Engineering Conference, Seattle
WA, April 2003.
Ph.D., Physical Chemistry, University of Georgia
M.A., Science Education (coursework complete), University of
B.S., Chemistry (ACS certified), Fairfield
to CV for more information.
CONTACT | PUBLIC SAFETY | CAREERS | RSS
Copyright 2008 - College of Science and Engineering, Seattle University.