This workshop encoils inorganic faculty, postdocs, and graduate students into the supportive community of scholars known as IONiC (Interactive Online Network of Inorganic Chemistry). Inorganic chemistry is one of the broadest fields in chemistry, covering the entire Periodic Table of the Elements, yet faculty tend to be narrowly trained in a single subdiscipline. Stepping into the inorganic classroom, where knowledge of all of the subdisciplines is expected, can be daunting. Collaboration with colleagues from different inorganic subfields is an obvious solution to this problem, but geographical and professional isolation, especially at small institutions, inhibits such collaborations. This workshop provides an opportunity to network and collaborate with other inorganic chemists and to deepen knowledge in the subfield of solid state and materials chemistry in order to introduce students to advances at the frontiers of developing solid state materials for alternative energy needs such as solar power, batteries, and fuel cells.
The IONiC community supports faculty interaction through its web home, VIPEr (Virtual Inorganic Pedagogical Electronic Resource, www.ionicviper.org). Participants in this workshop will learn about the resources on VIPEr and become active VIPEr contributors. The workshop theme, inorganic catalysis, will add a “back to grad school” feel to the workshop, with participants immersing themselves in cutting edge chemistry, learning from leading researchers in the field, and creating new learning opportunities for their students. Participants will work collaboratively to develop new teaching materials to introduce or expand the theme of alternative energy needs in their classrooms.