Lori Zaikowski

Lori Zaikowski
Professor of Chemistry and Natural Sciences / Chemistry and Physics Department Chair
Chemistry and Physics



Professor Zaikowski graduated from Stony Brook University with masters and doctoral degrees in chemistry. She has over 25 years experience teaching sciences and mathematics at the undergraduate, graduate, and high school levels. Throughout her career, she worked closely with diverse populations of high school students in summer and academic year programs to inspire young people through the applications of chemistry and other sciences. With support from the Dorr Foundation, she founded the Chemistry in Action Research program at Dowling College to engage high school and college students in environmental investigations on New York’s Long Island South Shore Estuary. In 1997 she established the Annual Science and Math Symposium for high school research students at Dowling College. https://sites.google.com/site/nsfnoyce/ Since 2003 she has been the Director of the NSF Robert Noyce Program at Dowling College. Through funding from the National Science Foundation and the Department of Energy, Professor Zaikowski collaborates with students and colleagues at Brookhaven National Laboratory studying electron transfer processes and energetics of charge separation in “molecular wires” with applications to organic solar materials and energy efficient electronic devices such as LEDs. She believes that chemistry has the potential to solve many problems that society faces, and that everyone should have a basic knowledge of chemistry.

  • CHM 1003C General Chemistry I Laboratory
  • CHM 1004C General Chemistry II Laboratory
  • CHM 3025A Organic Chemistry I Lecture
  • CHM 3027A Organic Chemistry I Laboratory
  • CHM 3026A Organic Chemistry II Lecture
  • 3028A Organic Chemistry II Laboratory
  • CHM 3035A Analytical Chemistry Lecture
  • CHM 3037A Analytical Chemistry Laboratory
  • CHM 3047A Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory
  • CHM 4076A Instrumental Analysis Lecture
  • CHM 4076L Instrumental Analysis Laboratory
  • CHM/BIO 4101A Biochemistry
  • CHM 4181A Chemistry Research Laboratory
  • CHM 4181A Soil Chemistry
  • CHM 4182A Polymer Electron Transfer
  • CHM 4185A Astrochemistry
  • CHM 4187A Environmental Chemistry
  • ASC 4139C Senior Seminar: Our World and its Future
  • ASC 4186C Senior Seminar: Science, Technology, Values
  • MSC 1006A Oceanography
  • NSC 2003C Science and the Concept of Evolution
  • NSC 2004C Science of Natural Systems
  • CHM 6601A Environmental Chemistry
  • CHM 6683A Advanced Organic Chemistry Reactions
  • CHM 6684A Advanced Organic Chemistry Mechanisms
  • CHM 6684A Chemistry Instrumentation and Research
  • CHM 6684A Geological Chemistry
  • CHM 6686A Chemical Paleontology
  • CHM 6687A, 6685A Astrochemistry
  • NSM 6603A Ethics and Values in Science and Technology
  • NSM 6700-6704N Seminar in Science and Math Education

Additional Info

Education: Stony Brook University: Ph.D, M.S. Chemistry; B.S. Biology, Environmental Science and Public Policy. Languages: Spanish, French


Favorite course to teach: Organic Chemistry. Seriously??? Think about it…you are made of organic molecules, you need organic molecules (food) to survive, you take pharmaceuticals when you are sick, you are surrounded by organic materials that make your life better. It is exciting to teach about the many applications of organic chemistry in everyday life, and to see students light up with confidence as they learn to solve more and more challenging problems. Organic chemistry teaches us how to think critically and to use logic, fundamental principles, and creative ideas to approach new problems we have never seen. We learn there is more than one way to solve a problem; true in life as in chemistry.

Research: I mentor students in cutting-edge chemistry research at Brookhaven National Laboratory where we are seeking solutions to the world’s energy problems. We work with organic polymers that act like “molecular wires” to conduct electrons, and have application to solar energy, LED lights, and electronic devices. I founded the Chemistry in Action Research Program to engage students in hands-on environmental investigations on the South Shore Estuary, and to teach students how to sail and navigate when we collect samples by boat.

Fun activities with students: In the National Science Foundation Noyce program that I direct, students dig for fossils in courses and field studies with me and Noyce Scholar Joseph Rezza. The “Dino Dig” field work is done in the summers at Tyler Lyson’s Marmarth Research Foundation in the Badlands of North Dakota at the 65 million year old K-T boundary. Students discovered a new species of fossil turtle, and brought fossils back to Dowling for other students to work on. http://www.mrfdigs.com

Why Dowling: It is a great place to teach and learn because of the learning community that exists. Class size is small, and there is ample opportunity for students to ask questions and have discussion. Students often help each other out both in and outside the classroom; there is a collaborative atmosphere that fosters growth, learning, and friendship.

Other pursuits: sailboat racing, fishing, hiking, ice hockey, diving, photography, playing guitar and bass guitar.

Grants and External Funding

•    Zaikowski, L. (PI), Savizky, R., DiNovis, J., The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. A.P. Chemistry MOOC, EdX $50,000
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI). Faculty and Student Teams (FaST) Research Fellowship (Department of Energy). BNL Chemistry Dept. Thermal and Photoreactions Group and Center for Functional Nanomaterials. NSF $22,000.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI, Project Coordinator and Mentor). American Chemical Society Project SEED at Dowling College. $12,000.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI), McDonnell, K.T. Dowling College Robert Noyce Scholarship Program Phase II. NSF Award # 09-34814.   $599,920.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI). NSF Supplemental Funding for Noyce Master Teaching Fellows. $99,000.
•    Established/oversee Michelle T. Nohs Scholarship with Nohs family. $15,000.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI, Project Coordinator and Mentor). American Chemical Society Project SEED. $5,000.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI) and Friedrich, J.M. Symposia and books on Chemical Evolution I and II. $10,000 from American Meteorological Society and other sources.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI). Faculty and Student Teams (FaST) Research Fellowship. Funded by U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and NSF. BNL Chemistry Department Thermal and Photoreactions Group. Upton, NY.
$17,000 NSF and $4,000 U.S. DOE.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI). FaST Research Fellowship. BNL Chemistry Department. Upton, NY. $16,500 NSF, $4,500 U.S. DOE DE-AC02-98-CH10886.
•    Miller, J. (PI) and Zaikowski, L. (Faculty Advisor).   Department of Energy funding for Dowling Noyce Scholar in SULI Internship program at BNL.
$7,000 DOE DE-AC02-98-CH10886.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI). NSF Supplemental funding for Dowling Noyce Scholars to Conduct Research and Develop Educational Modules in the Pre-Service Teacher Program and the SULI Internship Program at BNL. $9,000
•    Zaikowski (PI). NSF Supplemental Funding for Dowling Noyce Scholar to Conduct Research and Develop Educational Modules in the Pre-Service Teacher Program at BNL.   $4,500.
•    Zaikowski, L (PI), Monteferrante, S., Craven, J.   Robert Noyce Scholarship Program for Future Math and Science Teachers in High Need Schools. NSF Award # 03-35799. $499,764.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI). Idle Hour Flyfisher’s Association Fellowship. Annual donation to support one student per year on a Research Fellowship to work in the Chemistry in Action research program. $4,300.
•    Colon-Urban, R., Edasery, J., Ganson, J., Nieto, F., Quarless, D., Zaikowski, L. (Co-PI) L.I. Consortium for Interconnected Learning in the Quantitative Disciplines Faculty Development Grant. “Collaborative Activities in the Sciences.” $5,400.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI). L.I. Consortium for Interconnected Learning in the Quantitative Disciplines Grant. “Development of Mathematical Modeling Workshops for General and Organic Chemistry.” $1500.
•    Zaikowski, L. (PI). “Seed grant to initiate ‘Chemistry in Action’ mentoring research program for undergraduate and high school students”. Dorr Foundation, New York, NY. $15,000.
•    Goldfarb, T.D. (PI), Crease, R., Zaikowski, L. (Faculty Associate)   Co-developed and co-taught Institutes on ‘Ethics in the Science Classroom’ for secondary school teachers.   NSF Award #93-20255. $216,000.




•    Zaikowski, L.; Mauro, G.M.; Karten, B.; Asaoka, S.; Wu, Q.; Bird, M.J.; Cook, A.R.; Miller, J.R. (2014) “Charge transfer fluorescence and 34nm exciton diffusion length in polymers with electron acceptor end traps.” Journal of Physical Chemistry B   dx.doi.org/10.1021/jp510095p

•    Zaikowski, L.; Kaur, P.; Gelfond, C.; Selvaggio, E.; Asaoka, S.; Wu, Q.; Hung-Cheng, C.; Takeda, N.; Cook, A.; Yang, A; Rosanelli, J.; Miller, J.R. (2012) “Polarons, bipolarons, and side-by-side polarons in reduction of oligofluorenes” Journal of American Chemical Society 134(26), 10852-10863.

•    Zaikowski, L.; Friedrich, J.M.; Seidel, S.R.   (Eds.) (2010) Chemical Evolution II: From Origins of Life to Modern Society. American Chemical Society Books #1025. New York: Oxford University Press. 430 pp.

•    Seidel, S.R.; Zaikowski, L. (2010). “Coordination-driven self-assembly”. In Zaikowski, L.; Friedrich, J.M.; Seidel, S.R. (Eds.) Chemical Evolution II: From Origins of Life to Modern Society. (pp. 249-268). American Chemical Society Books #1025. New York:   Oxford University Press.
•    Zaikowski, L.; Friedrich, J.M. (Eds.) (2008) Chemical Evolution across Space and Time: From the Big Bang to Prebiotic Chemistry. American Chemical Society Books #981. New York: Oxford University Press. 362 pp.
•    Zaikowski, L.; Seidel, S.R.; Friedrich, J.M.   (2008). “Spectroscopy and the cosmos: Applications in the chemical sciences”. In Zaikowski, L.; Friedrich J.M. (Eds.) Chemical Evolution across Space and Time. (pp. 339-352). American Chemical Society Books #981. New York: Oxford University Press.
•    Zaikowski, L.; McDonnell, K.T.; Rockwell, R.F.; Rispoli, F. (2008). “Spatial and temporal variations in water quality in South Shore Estuary tributaries: Carmans, Patchogue, and Swan Rivers”. Estuaries and Coasts 31(1), 85-100.
•    Zaikowski, L.; Wilkens, R.T.; Fisher, K. (2008).   “Science and the concept of evolution:   From the Big Bang to origins and evolution of life”. Evolution Education and Outreach 1(1), 65-73.
•    Zaikowski, L.; Lichtman, P. (2007). “Environmental research puts science into action”. The Science Teacher, 74(4), 47-51.

•    Zaikowski, L.; Lichtman, P.; Quarless, D. (2007).   “Scientific discovery for all: Keys to developing and sustaining a successful research program”. The Science Teacher, 74(3), 28-33.

•    Zaikowski, L. (2005). “Evolutionary science: Implications for public health, drug discovery, and the environment”. In Cracraft, J.; Bybee, R. (Eds.) Evolutionary Science and Society. (pp. 161-166). Colorado Springs, CO: BSCS.

•    Zaikowski, L.; Garrett, J. (2004). “A three-tiered approach to enhance undergraduate education in ethics”. BioScience, 54(10), 942-949.

•    Zaikowski, L. (1996). Flash Vacuum Thermolysis of Non-volatile Compounds. Ann Arbor, Michigan: UMI Dissertation Services. 165 pp.

•    Goldfarb, T.D.; Crease, R.; Zaikowski, L.; Paldy, L. (1995). “On Conduct in Science” [Letter to the Editor]. Science, 269, 1119.
•    Cosper, E.; Battista, M.; Kunsler, S.; Zaikowski, L.; Wurster, C. (1987).   “Induced resistance to polychlorinated biphenyls confers cross-resistance and altered environmental fitness in a marine diatom, Ditylum brightwellii”.   Marine Environmental Research, 23, 207-221.


Presentations at National Meetings

•    Mauro, G.M.; Zaikowski, L.; Asaoka, S.; Bird, M.; Sfeir, M.; Cook, A.; Miller, J.R. (2014) “Exciton diffusion lengths of 30-40 nm measured along single polyfluorene chains with end traps by transient absorption spectroscopy and steady state fluorescence.” Telluride Science Research Center, Colorado (Aug. 13.)

•    Zaikowski, L., Signor, S.L.; Kowalczyk, M.; Takeda, N.; Miller, J.R. (2012) “Polymers resist forming charge-transfer complexes” Poster presented at American Chemical Society (ACS) 243rd National Meeting. San Diego, CA (28 March)

•    Zaikowski, L., Mauro, G.M., Karten, B.J., Farrell, M., Alicea, J.C., Asaoka, S., Miller, J.R. (2011) “Intramolecular electron transfer in polyfluorenes with electron acceptor endcaps” Poster presented at ACS 242nd National Meeting. Denver, CO (31 Aug.)

•    Zaikowski, L., Gelfond, C., Selvaggio, E.D., Asaoka, S., Takeda, N., Yang, A., Miller, J.R. (2009). “Reduction of poly-2,7-(9,9-dihexylfluorene) molecular wires to form polyanions“ Poster presented at ACS 237th National Meeting: invited Sci-Mix & Physical Chemistry Div. Salt Lake City, UT (23, 25 March)

•    Zaikowski, L., Wilkens, R.T., Fisher, K. (2007). “Science and the Concept of Evolution” Oral presentation at the ACS 233rd National Meeting. Chicago, IL (29 March)

•    Alberts, B., Alicea, J., Cook, A., Dorst, K., Miller, J., Zaikowski, L. (2006). “Energetics of charge separation in medium polarity solvents“ Poster presented at ACS 232nd National Meeting. San Francisco. (13 Sept.)

•    Zaikowski, L.Research in the high school setting:   Stepping stone to success” Invited oral presentation at the ACS 232th National Meeting. San Francisco, CA. (10 Sept.)

•    Zaikowski, L. (2006) “Water Quality in South Shore Estuary Tributaries: Status and Recommendations” Oral presentation at National Marine Educators Association Conference. L.I. Univ. Brooklyn, NY. (18 July)

•    Pierre-Louis*, G., Zaikowski, L. (2005). “Allelopathy in Sorghum”. Poster presented at AMHPS 19th Annual Symposium on Career Opportunities in Biomedical Sciences San Diego, CA. (23-25 March)

•    Pierre-Louis*, G., Zaikowski, L. (2004). “Analysis of the Chemical Nature and Inhibition Potential of an Allelochemical Synthesized by Sorghum bicolor”. Paper presented at the 10th Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students. Dallas, TX. (10-13 Nov.)

•    Zaikowski, L., Lichtman, P., King, V., Ramjeawan, K. (2003). “Keys to Building a Successful Research Program with Practical Chemical Applications”. Poster presented at ACS 226th National Meeting at invited Sci-Mix (8 Sept.) and Division of Chemical Education (7 Sept.) New York, NY. Featured in Wilkenson, S.L. (2003). “Creative Boost: High school and college teachers empower students to do consequential science projects”. Chemical & Engineering News 81(38), 34-35.

•    Zaikowski, L. (2003). “Chemistry in Action: Connecting Chemistry with Societal Concerns”. Oral presentation at ACS 226th National Meeting. New York, NY. (7 Sept.).

•    Zaikowski, L. (2003). “A Three-tiered Approach to Enhancing Ethics Education”. Poster presented at American Institute of Biological Sciences 53rd Annual National Meeting. Arlington, VA. (21 March).

•    Goldfarb*, T.D., Zaikowski, L., Crease, R.   (1997). “Ethics and Values in the Science Classroom” Paper presented at NSTA National Conference on Science Education. New Orleans, LA. (3-6 April)

•    Zaikowski, L., Fowler, F.W. (1995). “Flash Vacuum Thermolysis of the Non-Volatile Substrates D-Glucose and D-Mannose.” Poster presented at the ACS 210th National Meeting. Chicago, IL. (22 Aug.)

•    Zaikowski, L., Fowler, F.W. (1992). ”Flash Vacuum Thermolysis. Recent Developments in the Method, and Its Application to Problems in Organic Synthesis”. Poster presented at the ACS 204th National Meeting at Sci-Mix (invited) (23 Aug. 1992) and at Organic Chemistry Division. Washington, D.C. (24 Aug.)


Other Presentations

•    Zaikowski, L. (2014). “The Nature of Electrons and Excitons in Molecular Wires” Invited presentation at CUNY Lehman College, NY (May 27.)

•    Zaikowski, L. (2014). “Molecular Wires for Energy Storage, Harvest, and Transfer: Addressing a Grand Challenge of Engineering” Invited presentation at The Cooper Union, NY, NY (April 3.)

•    Zaikowski, L. (2013). “Electrons and Excitons in Polyfluorenes” Oral Presentation at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) Chemistry Dept. (June 19.)

•    Signor, S., Kowalczyk, M., Zaikowski, L., Colon, L.A., Miller, J.R. (2011). “Charge Transfer Complexes and Exciton Motion in Conjugated Molecules” Poster presented at BNL Symposium. Upton, NY. (10-11 Aug.)

•    Zaikowski, L., Mauro, G.M., Karten, B., Farrell, M., Alicea, J.C., Asaoka, S., Miller, J.R. (2011). “Intramolecular Exciton Migration in Polyfluorenes with Anthraquinone and Naphthylimide Electron-acceptor Endcaps” Poster presented at BNL Symposium. Upton, NY. (10-11 Aug.)

•    Simms, C., Zaikowski, L., Miller, J.R.   (2011). “Relating Mathematical Concepts to Advanced Chemistry Research Procedures” Poster presented at BNL Symposium. Upton, NY. (10-11 Aug.)

•    Zaikowski, L., Kaur, P., Selvaggio, E., Gelfond, C., Asaoka, S., Takeda, N., Cook, A., Yang, A., Miller, J.R. (2011). “Electron Transfer in F1-F10 Oligofluorenes forms Polyanions” Oral presentation at BNL (10 June)

•    Zaikowski, L., Karten, B., Farrell, M., Alicea, J., Gerlus, J-E. (2010). Intra and Intermolecular Electron Transfer in Polyfluorenes. Oral presentation at BNL. Upton, NY. (24 Aug.)

•    Zaikowski, L., Selvaggio, E.D., Quarta, S., Miller, J.R. (2009). “How Many Electrons Can Be Transferred to a Molecular Wire?” Poster presented at 4th NSF Noyce National Conference Washington, D.C. (1-3 July)

•    Zaikowski, L., Tam, C. (2009). “NSF Robert Noyce Scholarship Program at Dowling College” Poster presented at 4th NSF Noyce National Conference. Washington, D.C. (1-3 July)

•    Zaikowski, L. (2008). “Chemistry Research” Invited oral presentation at Wyandanch H.S. (19 Nov.)

•    Zaikowski, L. (2008). “Recruiting Science and Mathematics Teachers for the 21st Century: NSF Robert Noyce Scholarship Program at Dowling College” Poster presented at 3rd NSF Noyce National Conference. Washington, D.C. (25-27 June)

•    Zaikowski, L., Selvaggio, E., Quarta, S., Miller, J.R. (2007). “Electron Transfer and Delocalization” Poster presented at BNL Symposium. Upton, NY. (8-10 Aug.)

•    Zaikowski, L. (2007). “The Next Generation of Scientists in an Era of Global Change” Invited oral presentation at Hauppauge High School. Hauppauge, NY. (7 Feb.)

•    Zaikowski, L. (2006). “Advances in Energy Storage & Transfer” Oral presentation at Dowling. (6 Dec.)

•    Zaikowski, L. (2006). “Chemistry in Action at Dowling” Invited oral presentation at Synergy in Science Conference. Sponsored by L.I. Works and Superintendents-College Presidents Association at OSI Pharmaceuticals. Farmingdale, NY. (7 Nov.)

•    Zaikowski, L., Seidel, S.R., McDonnell, K.T.   (2006). “Science in Action at Dowling”   Recruiting presentations: two oral presentations used at multiple locations for recruiting new students.

•    Alicea, J., Miller, J.R., Zaikowski, L. (2006). “How Much Energy is Needed to Produce Ions in Slightly Polar Solvents?” Oral presentation at BNL Symposium. Upton, NY. (10 Aug. 2006).

•    Alicea, J., Cook, A., Dorst, K., Miller, J.R., Zaikowski, L. (2006).   “Energetics of Charge Separation” Poster presented at BNL Symposium. Upton, NY. (9-10 Aug.)

•    Albert, B., Miller, J.R, Zaikowski, L. (2006). “The Effect of Polarity on Charge Separation”   Oral presentation at BNL Symposium. Upton, NY. (9 Aug. 2006).

•    Yang, A., Miller, J.R, Zaikowski, L. (2006). “Electron Transfer in Oligofluorenes” Oral presentation at BNL Symposium. Upton, NY. (9 Aug. 2006)

•    Zaikowski, L., Guzzardo, P. (2006). “NSF Robert Noyce Scholarship Program at Dowling College” Poster presented at the 1st NSF Noyce National Conference in Wash., D.C. (19-20 June)
•    Zaikowski, L. (2006). “Traditional Uses of Biodiversity” Invited lectures as Study Group Leader on American Museum of Natural History Discovery Tours “Cape to Casablanca”.   Africa (28 Dec. to 20 Jan.)
•    Zaikowski, L. (2004). “The Next Generation: Scientific Research for the Benefit of Science and Society” Invited keynote address at Uniondale HS Research Program Annual Banquet.   Uniondale, NY. (8 June)
•    Zaikowski, L. (2002). “Biodiversity and Conservation in Kenya”. Oral Presentation at Dowling College. (30 Oct. 2002)
•    Zaikowski, L. (2001). “A Show of Hands: Success with a Collaborative Research Mentoring Program”. Invited lecture at NY State Department of State Division of Coastal Resources QC2 Waterfront Rediscovery Conference.   Albany, NY. (3 Oct.)
•    Zaikowski, L., Van Nostrand, A. (2001). “GIS: Tracking Flow of River Pollutants”. Oral presentation at Dowling College Instructional Technology Symposium. Oakdale, NY.   (22-23 Aug.)

•    Zaikowski, L., Nolan, M., Egan, J.   (2001). “Patchogue: A River Runs Through It. Chemical and Physical Properties of the Patchogue River: Using GIS to Track and Predict Changes”.   Invited oral presentation and report to Village of Patchogue Board and public at Board meeting.   Patchogue, NY. (28 July) Report contributed to designation of Patchogue River as a Priority Waterbody by NY State DEC in 2002.

•    Zaikowski, L. (2001). “Water Quality Monitoring”. Oral presentation and written comments to South Shore Estuary Reserve Council at the Draft Comprehensive Management Plan Public Hearings. Patchogue, NY. (28 Feb.)

•    Zaikowski, L. (2000). “The South Shore Estuary”. Invited oral presentation at Bellport High School for the Authentic Science Research Program.   Bellport, NY (Oct. 2000)

•    Zaikowski, L. (1999). “Chemistry in Action”. Invited oral presentations at East Islip High School for Advanced Placement Environmental Science classes.   East Islip, NY (Dec. 1999).

•    Zaikowski, L. (1996). “Flash Vacuum Thermolysis of Non-Volatile Compounds”. Oral presentation at Departmental Seminar, Stony Brook University Chemistry Department, NY. (23 April)

•    Zaikowski, L. (1993).“Shedding Light on an Environmental Problem: Sensitized Photolysis of PCB in Soil Samples” Oral presentation at Department Seminar Series, Stony Brook Univ. Chemistry Dept. (11 Feb.)