Big Plans at Princeton

April 15th, 2007

Princeton University took home the Chemmy for Outstanding Department of 2006, and it looks like they’re going to make a run at defending the title in 2007. Valued sources recently told the ChemBark News Network that the Ivy League school has made generous offers to a number of outstanding young organic chemists who are already tenured in top-five departments. Fresh on the heels of adding Sorensen and MacMillan, Princeton is looking to firmly establish itself as a hotbed of organic chemistry for years to come.

Raiding other schools’ faculties has long been a strategy for building departmental strength. Where the Yankees and Red Sox are the baseball teams most willing to reach deep into their pockets for big-name talent, Harvard is the school most famous for doing so in chemistry. Most of the department’s big guns were hired as tenured professors from other schools: Corey and Jacobsen from Illinois, Whitesides from MIT, Evans and Myers from Caltech, Lieber from Columbia, Schreiber from Yale, and Kahne from Princeton. On the flip side, assistant professors have had a miserable record of gaining tenure in the department (until recently).

While pursuing the free agent market at the expense of decimating your farm system is generally a poor idea in baseball, it is a viable strategy in the world of chemistry. Granting someone tenure equates to giving them a contract for life, something unheard of in the sports world. Unfortunately for universities, it often takes more than seven years to get a handle on the quality of an assistant professor. Hiring a proven forty-year-old is a much safer bet. And unlike in sports, there are no salary caps or luxury taxes in academia, so there are no limits to the amount of money you can spend.

Of course, the strategy of buying talent is contingent on being rich—the more money a school has, the better it can play the game. Schools with less funding not only have a harder time reeling in heavy hitters, they have a harder time retaining members of their faculty who’ve attracted the interest of other schools. Money doesn’t just factor into salary, but also into expanding lab space and improving instrumentation. Ambitious professors want to improve the efficiency of their research and have the flexibility to expand their labs and their programs.

There are some factors that money can’t help.  Geographic location is often important, as it influences features such as the local culture and the employment market for professors’ significant others. And as with anything related to academia, politics can play a big role. If the deans at a school get on an interdisciplinary kick, there many be money available for a nanobiophysical chemist but not for a synthetic one. An aspect that is particularly intriguing about the Princeton move is that it is geared towards pure chemistry instead of the interdisciplinary flavor of the month. That’s rare nowadays.

Of course, this story is still developing and nothing has been set in stone, but things are looking mighty exciting if you’re an organic chemist at Princeton.

Previous Comments

  1. Zinc Says:
    April 15th, 2007 at 2:15 pm I’ve heard it’s Toste moving to Princeton. They’ve got more space now that they’ve denied Chulbom Lee tenure. Scripps built their department from scratch by raiding other big name departments (MIT in particular) in addition to hiring former post docs and, later, grad students as assistant profs.
  2. Kyle Finchsigmate Says:
    April 15th, 2007 at 5:20 pm Hmmm… it’s almost time to update the big map, isn’t it?
  3. Paul Says:
    April 15th, 2007 at 5:26 pm Hold your horses, boys. These were just *offers*, so far as I know.
  4. Val Says:
    April 15th, 2007 at 6:08 pm Who else is rumored to have an offer? Any really big names?
  5. prospective Says:
    April 15th, 2007 at 7:14 pm I heard from MacMillian that Toste was “definitely” coming there… Sorensen said “It’s more like 60/40″ and Toste himself said that he’s waiting for a counteroffer from Berkeley. Don’t hold your breath.
  6. milkshake Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 5:48 am Scripps is still doing the riding. I would like to see who is next to go to Scripps Florida. I heard of one (fairly famous) man who supposedly said yes.
  7. bibi Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 6:20 am What about Trauner ? Is he supposed to stay at Berkeley ?
  8. Kutti Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 7:01 am Somebody told me that Trauner got an offer from Heidelberg. But I think that´s rather unlikely.
  9. bibi Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 7:16 am Milkshake, is the guy more famous than Bill Roush ?
  10. Cat Herder Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 8:53 am Kutti and Bibi, I highly doubt Trauner will leave Berkeley for Heidelberg for a number of reasons.

    As far as I can tell, Toste is staying put *for now*. MacMillian, true to form, is exaggerating. I would suspect that Berkeley will make a good counteroffer seeing as how they are currently a little weak in the organic division if Toste leaves. The other big name that Princeton made a bribe… er… offer to is Gregory Fu. I’ve heard a rumor that Toste and Fu are either both going to Princeton, or neither of them are, why that would be, I have no idea.

    Remember that Princeton is opening the “Center for Catalysis”, a subsidiary of Merck and Co. (does anyone know the rationale for this?)

  11. Phlogiston Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 11:08 am 10.

    The “center for catalysis” is just to bring some of high throughput tools to academia to screen reactions and conditions. The bigger picture is to highlight what the unmet problems in industry are, so that academics can focus on probelms that will have impact. It’s really more of an academic collaboration with open IP, e.g. publish and make the findings available for all to use.

  12. Wavefunction Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 11:59 am Seems like Princeton is enhancing their chemistry the way they enhanced their math in the 40s and 50s.
  13. milkshake Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 6:40 pm It is hard to compare, though both of them have a reaction named after them.
  14. Wolfie Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 11:03 pm Paul, finally, give it up, and get a chemistry yellow press writer. I pays better than any ordinary chemist at a company or a mediocre department, and it’s much more fun, of course. And it works as well with or without Ph.D.
  15. Wolfie Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 11:11 pm I would not know there is any free full professorship available currently in organic chemistry in Heidelberg (a few will be coming in the next years). Trauner has already been claimed a genius 15 years ago in my old group at the Free University of Berlin… DELETED BY PAUL
  16. Paul Says:
    April 16th, 2007 at 11:21 pm Wolfie: Those sorts of personal comments won’t be tolerated here. Keep it to yourself.
  17. milkshake Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 12:43 am But I heard just the same thing about one very nice chem prof that you have in the department. (Q: “Can you kill a man?” A: “Yes. But that would take weeks…”)
  18. Alvy Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 2:26 pm Krische in UT Austin got a huge offer from Yale. He may move too.
  19. I doubt it Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 4:35 pm Krische is going to UCLA – the new Cram Chair… or so I hear – Cram must be spinning in his grave…
  20. anon Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 6:36 pm Supposedly, Fu has said he’s going as long as Toste also agrees. Toste, according to people in his group, seems to flip-flop in his thinking each week. He has gotten, reportedly, an initial counter-offer from Berkeley. I don’t think he has a timeline for when he’ll tell his group whether he is leaving.

    Also, Jeff Long (non-organic chemist) at Berkeley supposedly got an offer from Princeton. He is a good friend of Toste’s.

  21. provocateur Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 6:46 pm krische!this guy has recycled his rhodium -hydrogen c-c bonding chemistry so much tht my head aches as soon as i see his name…heard lots of ppl left/kiked out frm his grp in austin…hmmm
  22. bad cop Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 6:51 pm yeah…krische has a rep of being a real douche, this from many of his former students. He held UT-Austin hostage over his tenure package, so no surprise that he is leaving now.
  23. Val Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 8:44 pm Why would Fu go only if Toste agrees? I just have a hard time imagining Fu leaving MIT…
  24. provocateur Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 10:12 pm i am intrigued…wat does yale see in krische.This guy publishes only methodology sum phosphine krap thts not original and repetetive and sum rhodium carbon-carbon hydrogen gas mediated formation (done to death)which is also not tht original..yale seems desperate..
  25. organometallic Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 10:12 pm is it true that Jacobsen will leave Harvard?
  26. milkshake Says:
    April 17th, 2007 at 11:53 pm I heard this Jacobsen-is leaving rumor something like 10 years ago (the reason then was that did not get any graduate student two years in a row – I don’t think this should be a problem now)
  27. outsider Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 4:36 am can a synthesis person please tell me how krische and toste are different? they are both from trost and publish with equal frequency in same journals.
  28. Paul Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 6:08 am I think some people in this thread are just making stuff up.
  29. milkshake Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 6:30 am no, you can check this out
  30. Paul Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 6:33 am I wasn’t referring to your post.
  31. provocateur Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 7:08 am one big obvious diff. btween krische and toste…
    toste does reaktions which vary in mechanism, use and also uses them to make natural products.
    krische’s reaktions/methodology is the same(i am not kidding)..i am surprised as i read the papers..how kld jacs publish papers tht hv only minimal change in substrate skope..and he does not seem to hv used his methodos to get to sum natural products(if at all..maybe parts of a couple…)
  32. eugene Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 3:03 pm Another possible difference is that if you used to be in the Krische group, you were not allowed to do your own literature searches. I mean, why would you? You’re just a stupid little grad student/post doc. You just sit back and listen to your master and leader and you’ll get your degree in five years… (This is from a person I know who left the Krische group). Do the exact reaction in the way your master tells you and don’t deviate from the conditions; don’t ask why.

    I think it pays to let grad students pursue their own tangents and ideas (I think the your research and the scope of it benefit a lot) and I hope the Krische group is different these days.

    P.S. This person had a lot of success right after he left in his new group and research. Like… really a lot. A huge amount. So I decided to believe him on this one.

  33. Hap Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 7:23 pm Doesn’t that method of “teaching” kind of negate the point of getting a PhD (well, other than providing cheap labor for professors)? That seems even worse than being a column chromatography slave for a total synthesis group – at least then you might learn a saleable skill (sort of) and some semblance of thinking skills.
  34. Wolfie Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 9:03 pm but Paul, everyone knows… (DELETED)
  35. Paul Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 9:30 pm I don’t care. Personal stuff like that has no place here, even though it is possibly relevant to the discussion.
  36. Wolfie Says:
    April 18th, 2007 at 9:36 pm first time he admitted I have to say something relevant
  37. snoodbong Says:
    April 19th, 2007 at 3:33 pm I was close to committing to Austin to work for Krische; seems I was lucky enough to choose otherwise, at least if he’s half as bad as ya’ll make him sound.
  38. anon Says:
    April 19th, 2007 at 4:34 pm I have no idea why Fu would leave only if Toste did. Maybe because that (them both at Princeton) would pretty much cement Princeton as a top-3 school? I think they are also fairly good buddies.

    While it doesn’t make total sense, I heard it directly from a member of Dean’s group (who Dean mentioned this to).

  39. tuna fish Says:
    April 21st, 2007 at 5:55 pm On a related issue, I heard that Sanford was moving to either Yale or CalTech. This amazes me, since I don’t know anyone who is knocked out by her work. Its fine but….kind of “meh”. Apparently she was in a race with Yandulov for catalytic fluorination. It seems that she won because I have not seen anything come out of that guys lab since he started at Stanford. Good luck with tenure buddy.
  40. Paul Says:
    April 21st, 2007 at 8:53 pm I like Sanford’s stuff a lot. The world spat in her face when she used Pd(IV) in her mechanisms, but she followed through and made a pretty convincing case for it.
  41. provocateur Says:
    April 23rd, 2007 at 10:03 pm news from yaleeee

    krische is in….

  42. Val Says:
    April 23rd, 2007 at 10:50 pm When do you think Toste and Co. will make a decision? Or is this like the Stoltz-to-Yale rumors?
  43. eugene Says:
    April 24th, 2007 at 8:34 pm Wow, that’s a bit harsh about spitting in her face for Pd(IV) mechanisms. It’s not that outlandish and other famous people had proposed it before. But yes, some people are too hung up on the lower Pd couple, but people choose to remain ignorant in all walks of life when, especially if it’s such a religious issue as that. And the Yandulov comment was out of line too. I think I would have a lot to write chemistry wise if those two comments were made into a post.
  44. tuna fish Says:
    April 24th, 2007 at 9:15 pm Eugene, what exactly was “out of line”? Common sense would indicate that if a large chunk of your research program is scooped, shown to be unfeasible by another lab, or just does not work out then you have a hard time in recovering from such a blow – especially as an asst. prof in a high pressure dept. Would you class your speculation about life in the Krische group (comment #32) as “out of line”?
  45. eugene Says:
    April 24th, 2007 at 9:52 pm I think it’s out of line in terms of the fact that it’s a little out of the way or reality (not so with my comment that is backed up by credible, yet anonymous evidence).

    I think that it’s pretty obvious that Yandulov was not the only one trying to catalytically make CF bonds. However, it might appear at first glance that all his research was “scooped” by Sanford. Yet, if you read his recent (very long) JACS paper, you’ll notice that this is not the case. Sanford’s approach is to use common sense and the old idea of directing groups. Common sense means the approach is limited to certain substrates, the source of fluorine (or the oxidant) is expensive and untenable for industry, and the amount of palladium catalyst is (did you ever notice this in all the directing group CH functionalization papers that you read?) usually too big for any type of real world application (research excepted). To get at the underlying factors of what ligands are necessary to reductively eliminate a CF bond under mild conditions and be able to use a cheap fluorine source, you’d need to sit down and design model systems, do DFT calculations, and test out your ideas. The progress will be much slower, but the potential payoff will be much greater. I would argue that you’re mistaken in thinking of the Sanford and Yandulov groups as being similar. Their approach to the same problem is completely different and this is reflected in the literature.

    Also, making disparaging comments about someones’ tenure chances during their three year review is a little below the belt… Albeit, maybe Yandulov should have told his students to use their common sense and read recent literature, then throw some stuff together (ene yne system with some weird shit in between to make it look cool, 10% palladium acetate, 20% weird ligand that you screen for from a Strem ligand kit, some base to suck in protons, acetic acid solvent, heat until magic happens maybe with milder, never before used oxidants or heteroatom sources and submit to JACS with some handwaving mechanism supported by deuterium labelling studies) to get a quick result in the meantime, but that’s not the way all groups work. Both approaches have their merits and both are necessary for science to do its job.

  46. tuna fish Says:
    April 24th, 2007 at 10:05 pm Wow, I was schooled there.
  47. provocateur Says:
    April 24th, 2007 at 10:09 pm dft calculations!when has calculations been used to research methodology!its USUALLY after-the- fact explanation!
  48. eugene Says:
    April 24th, 2007 at 10:19 pm Of course, the key word there is “usually”.
  49. tuna fish Says:
    April 25th, 2007 at 11:22 am Upon review, Eugene is much nearer the mark than I am about the Sanford/Yandulov approaches to C-F bonds. For all those who care, I was a dick – sorry!
  50. provocateur Says:
    April 25th, 2007 at 5:56 pm eugene, kan u get a ref. where there is a clear case of modelling leading to the desired experimental result…
  51. eugene Says:
    April 25th, 2007 at 6:46 pm Now come on Tuna Fish, pull yourself together! Where would the blogging community be without us being able to insult famous people (albeit, Sanford and Yandulov are not that famous yet)? Besides, I don’t really care that much.

    Provocateur, take a look at the William Goddard home page and you might find many interesting things there. His approach is to use DFT to give suggestions for how to modify existing systems. Here is a paper:

    http://www.wag.caltech.edu/pub…..df/667.pdf

    I think you want to be reading starting from Figure 20. Basically, they predicted that the optimum metal for CH activation is Ir, and modelled the ligands as well. That turned out to be the case for the experimentalists (I think there is a paper this year on it). That this may not be the optimal system for CH bond oxidation is neither here nor there though… I got another example, but it will be harder to find. Also, not all of the catalysis that is reported comes out of the blue. Just because there isn’t a DFT section in the paper, doesn’t mean somebody lazy hasn’t used it to save themselves a couple of months in the lab and narrow down some choices. A good rule if you can do calculations, is that when you think up of a great new idea with a new ligand motif, is to model it first in the rate activating step over the weekend. Unless you like spending your weekends in the lab of course. Some of my ideas turned out to be spectacularly bad and were abandoned to the folder of shame after DFT proved once again that I am an idiot.

  52. provocateur Says:
    April 25th, 2007 at 8:03 pm thank you for the reference.
    but the major limitation in what you write in the last para is all your calculations are based on what you think is happening (e.g. your version of a T.S., or sum major interaction tht you think is the desired origin of a selectivity).Maybe you hv to relabel ur folder of shame as a folder of missed oportunities.But anyway it has its place and its value…
  53. Anonymous Says:
    April 27th, 2007 at 3:18 am It is true that Yandulov is intentionally shying away from hot electrophilic fluorine sources. Interesting sidenote to the Sanford/Yandulov duel in this comment thread: Sanford has made some repeated visits to Stanford below the seminar radar. Rumor has it the department has courted her previously but she wasn’t interested in a move at the time. It will be interesting to see what comes of that…
  54. Paul Says:
    April 27th, 2007 at 5:42 am I heard* she was waiting to win an award from one of the prestigious chemistry blogs on the Internet, because after that, Harvard or Berkeley was sure to come a’knocking.

    *By “heard”, I mean I completely made this up just two minutes ago

  55. retread Says:
    April 29th, 2007 at 9:12 pm Not to sound too much like Bill Clinton, but it depends on what you mean by best. Princeton’s focus on undergraduates in the 50s got me interested in Chemistry. From Spring ‘59 to graduation in ‘60, I had the benefit of nearly daily contact with Paul Schleyer — Princeton ‘51 Harvard PhD ‘57. Sometimes we’d work in the lab until 10 – 11 then go out for Pizza etc.

    So, like all new graduate students entering Harvard 9/60 I thought I was pretty good, and like everyone else made some extra money being a lab section man in beginning Orgo at Harvard. The Harvard chemistry department back then was probably the “best” ever. It had the following Nobel Laureates (to be) — Woodward, Corey, Lipscomb, Bloch, Gilbert, Hoffman — none of them sitting on their laurels, but rather creating them. Wonderful for a graduate student, awful for undergraduates. Instead of someone like Schleyer they got — me (and my fellow grad students) — not that that was all bad — among my class were Lowry and Richardson (of you know what) and Voet (the male half of Voet and Voet) — but there was no way that we could give Harvard juniors what we received as undergraduates. Voet would talk about Feynmann teaching freshman physics at CalTech, and I would counter with John Wheeler at Princeton. I don’t think Woodward or Corey ever taught an undergraduate course while I was there.

    So when you guys say Princeton is the best, just what do you mean. If best means like Harvard was, something very valuable will be lost.

  56. The Dude Says:
    April 29th, 2007 at 10:33 pm Retread, it’s awesome that you’ve paid this site a visit.
  57. Paul Says:
    April 30th, 2007 at 12:44 am That is an excellent point, Retread. My focus on this post was definitely on the improvement in research at Princeton; I don’t have any feel for how well these chemists teach. It’s almost impossible to know without, at least, having seen them give a talk.

    One of the reasons I chose to go to NYU over a school with a bigger-named chemistry department is that I figured that the attention given to undergraduates would be greater. Sure enough, I had a great time there and, unlike at Harvard, undergrads could interact with the faculty with ease (more office hours, open doors on offices, professors at problem sessions, etc.) Harvard tries to address the problem by hiring people whose full-time jobs are to “deal with the undergrads”, and I have long felt that this leaves the students here short-changed.

  58. milkshake Says:
    April 30th, 2007 at 7:30 am I was hearing that undergrad chemistry education quality at H was pretty bad 6-8 years ago, there were some complaints and classes revolting against their teachers (I heard about it from some TAs teaching these clasees).
  59. anon Says:
    May 15th, 2007 at 6:32 pm News from UT….

    Krische is staying.

  60. eugene Says:
    May 15th, 2007 at 6:45 pm Well, his website is already on the Yale sever. That would be so mean to Yale. They need an organometallic chemist badly after Hartwig’s departure since it was always one of their strong points.
  61. anon Says:
    May 15th, 2007 at 7:20 pm I agree…that would be so embarassing for them.
  62. Mitch Says:
    May 16th, 2007 at 2:33 am Anon is not the most creative of anonymous posting aliases…

    Mitch

  63. Longhorn Says:
    May 16th, 2007 at 6:53 pm I was in the Krische group. Coming from the European science scene, I felt he was pretty light handed in comparison. Not nearly as controlling as what I came from. Though I haven’t worked under any other U.S. profs. I got a lot out of my time in the group and would recommend it to others. Just my two cents from someone with first hand knowledge.
  64. Pd2dba3 Says:
    May 17th, 2007 at 5:48 pm Trauner update: Looks more likely than previous posters have suggested. Telling outside members
  65. bad cop Says:
    May 18th, 2007 at 7:23 pm MacMillan was here in WI this week to give a talk, and the buzz was that he got $12-15 meeeeliion in filthy start-up cash to move from Caltech. Apparently Princeton suddenly have $100M to spend on chemistry faculty recruitment, probably in collaboration with Dow. Another tidbit is that the Fu move is “a done deal”, but nothing on FDT (who, incidently, was here a few weeks earlier). Krische news – the move to Yale is on.
  66. Anonymous Says:
    May 18th, 2007 at 7:52 pm I heard that the Fu/Toste move won’t happen until the new labs at Princeton are built (in the next 3 years). So probably no moves in the near future…
  67. Anonymous Says:
    May 18th, 2007 at 10:56 pm frm the horses mouth…final word

    just called UT ..Krische is NOT moving.got scared bekos he wont get funding for his continously repetetive stuff.He has already informed UT

  68. unruly Says:
    May 19th, 2007 at 9:49 am check out Krische’s asymmetric imine additions on JACS-ASAP. I don’t know about earlier stuff, but this is very cool, very different from other stuff out there.
  69. Anonymous Says:
    May 19th, 2007 at 10:56 am lemme give you the gameplan of krische’s papers…
    1)take an aldehyde, imine or a-carbonyls like pyruvates.
    2)now take an alkyne or a conjugated system.
    3)put rhodium triflate basically cationic rhodium
    4)take biphep or binap and other bi-phosphines
    5)solvent dcm or dce
    6)you hv three conditions, neutral, cat. acid, cat. base
    7)fix a hydrogen balloon
    8)writa a paper invoking sum history of hydrogenation and fancy TS.
    9)accepted IN jacs.

    I hv only one problem in this…number 9…as i read his papers one after the other..man this guy is the ‘god of incremental science’

  70. squirmy Says:
    May 22nd, 2007 at 2:04 am Longhorn,

    I’ve known everyone in the Krische group since he began with the exception of this past year. I don’t recall any students/postdocs in his group that were from Europe (besides the British postdoc he fired). I’ve heard he’s lightened up a bit with his students, but I know at least 5 of his students quit. I have a pretty good idea who Eugene was talking about…he was really good. One of the others who quit was even better and, after Krische, he decided to leave chemistry altogether. He also fired one guy in his 5th year and he wouldn’t give one of the students who actually graduated a recommendation letter.

    I won’t comment on his chemistry. I think that’s been done enough. As a person, I think the guy’s despicable. I’m glad I eluded his charisma during recruiting. Something in my gut just didn’t feel right. Always trust your gut.

  71. Bluejay Says:
    May 23rd, 2007 at 4:45 pm in response to #67…

    he didn’t leave because he was scared….
    From what I hear, UT bumped up their offer so that there was no great benefit in moving to Yale. Why uproot everything and leave when their is no major gain?

  72. squirmy Says:
    May 25th, 2007 at 1:34 am yeah, maybe he wasn’t scared, but why sign on to yale to the point you have a webpage on their site and then recant? i hear the monetary amounts were about the same…it was the distribution (i.e. salary) and that he wouldn’t have to pull in outside grant money for 10 years that made the difference. of course, the rest of the dept. will have to pay for it. the dept. had a lunch “celebrating” the fact that he stayed after he bled them dry, but i think he’s sealed his fate to stay at UT for a long time. i can’t see him getting other offers because he can’t be trusted even when he signs on the dotted line.
  73. Bluejay Says:
    May 29th, 2007 at 7:18 pm you have a point there. Though I did he really he bleed them dry? he did “give his gentleman’s word” to yale right? So as far as he was concerned, he was moving east. He didn’t force UT into a corner with an either/or situation… they chose to up the anty after the fact.
  74. eugene Says:
    May 29th, 2007 at 9:05 pm Yale should give the job to that excellent Japanese chemist who quit from Waseda university for misappropriating funds (Matsumoto). From what I read in CEN news, it sounds like what she did was what any big American PI does twice a year or during any more (loses 65 grand by making dumb decisions on who to hire or not insuring a glove box during a move). The Japanese are just insane. Misappropriate about 65 grand and everything hits the fan and now the university pays back the government 1.8 million!? A little bit of an overreaction there. It was probably political.

    No one ever gets fired when the glove box paid for by public funds is dropped during a move and there is no insurance because someone thought they could save some money. But use 65 grand to pay for “student expenses” and you lose your job. I’m sure there are similarities between “student experiences” in both Japan and the USA in light of that.

    Plus, she’s a really good chemist with an excellent publishing record in organometallics.

    http://www.rsc.org/chemistrywo…..060601.asp

    Waseda just made it onto my personal blacklist. Not that that has ever worked for me. The one time I boycotted a pub personally, as far as I know, they are still in business.

  75. Anonymous Says:
    May 29th, 2007 at 10:01 pm i heard frm members tht krische initially (in 2003??)had an offer frm UIUc and did the same thing…the bargain then was tht he got directly promoted to prof. frm asst. prof…this guy is not a prof. but a businessman..sells his incremental science to jacs on a reg. basis and now offers himself to the highest bidder (his wrd is dirt). hmmm..
  76. squirmy Says:
    May 29th, 2007 at 10:36 pm “Though I did he really he bleed them dry?…”
    your pronoun usage makes me wonder if you’re actually MJK :)

    i do believe he had the intention of going to yale, so maybe it’s unfair to say he bled UT dry. still, i feel this whole deal wasn’t much different from his early tenure decision when I-UC gave him an offer and he made all sorts of demands on UT to stay. and then he puts his promotion to full professor from assistant on his cv like they just gave it to him b/c he was so awesome. i’m sure anybody else would put that promotion on their cv, but knowing the story behind it makes me retch a bit.

    my overall opinion of his research is that he’s remarkably intelligent…a genius, even. But he’s overrated b/c of his ability to pump out research into the smallest publishable units. he occasionally has a paper that makes me think, “wow, that’s nice”, but more often it’s, “how the heck did he get this into jacs?”

    oh, and did i mention i think he’s a despicable person?

  77. squirmy Says:
    May 29th, 2007 at 10:41 pm i swear that anonymous post came from someone else and i didn’t see it till after i posted (yeah, it took me that long to write…i guess paul could check ip’s). but it’s funny that somebody else brought up the illinois offer for comparison.
  78. Anonymous Says:
    May 30th, 2007 at 5:57 am hey all.. the anonymus post is frm ‘provocateur’.I was just plain lazy/forgetful to put my details..
  79. provocateur Says:
    May 30th, 2007 at 5:58 am hey all.. the anonymus post is frm ‘provocateur’.I was just plain lazy/forgetful to put my details..
  80. Bluejay Says:
    May 30th, 2007 at 12:41 pm Dangit…you caught me. haha, not really. thats pretty funny though. I wonder if he even knows what a blog is.

    squirmy,
    does his despicableness to you come from personal experience? are you in the ut chem dept?

  81. squirmy Says:
    May 30th, 2007 at 3:39 pm i was in the dept, but i’ve since graduated. to say my opinion comes from personal experience would be an overstatement b/c he never did anything bad to me directly. in fact, despite being in the same division the only time i dealt with him directly was in recruiting and you could say he actually helped me out there.

    my opinion of him is mostly based on rumors and hearsay of friends who were in his group and off record discussions with other professors. but i’ve heard enough of it from people i trust to believe it.

  82. Bluejay Says:
    May 30th, 2007 at 4:26 pm hmmm…fair enough.
  83. bad cop Says:
    May 30th, 2007 at 5:04 pm Looks like Krische is generally viewed as a poor-man’s Hartwig. UI-U wanted him before they got John The Bastard, and then Yale wanted him as the Hartwig replacement.
    As for his despicable nature, he once brazenly cut in line ahead of me for donuts at a seminar, but I managed to spill coffee on his pants – now we even.
  84. provocateur Says:
    May 30th, 2007 at 7:29 pm Hartwig …Krische…At least with hartwig I will learn something…with Mr. K hmmmmmmm..its just not worth the trouble
  85. Creed Bratton Says:
    May 31st, 2007 at 5:40 pm Any truth to Coates to Yale or Caltech?
  86. Bad Cop Says:
    May 31st, 2007 at 10:15 pm I have never heard anything about that, but anything move seems possible right now. Coates would probably fit in better (in terms of chemistry) at Yale, and we know that they are pretty desperate now that Krische gave them the finger. But why move from Ithaca?
  87. squirmy Says:
    May 31st, 2007 at 11:08 pm “why move from ithaca?”

    winter in ithaca.

  88. Paul Says:
    May 31st, 2007 at 11:11 pm But Ithaca is gorges.
  89. squirmy Says:
    June 1st, 2007 at 12:04 am if he wants gorges, he should go to yale. he could make roadtrips to see them (during the summers). otherwise, go for caltech
  90. just curious Says:
    July 23rd, 2007 at 1:16 am any idea where chulbom is moving next????


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