Jennifer L. Stockdill


Assistant Professor of Chemistry

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Jenn grew up in Fredericksburg, VA and completed her undergraduate studies at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA, where she graduated magna cum laude with a BS in Chemistry in 2003. From there, she moved to Pasadena, CA, where she completed a PhD in Chemistry in 2009 under the guidance of Prof. Brian M. Stoltz at Caltech. Her thesis work focused on the synthesis of the bioactive marine alkaloid zoanthenol. Through this synthetic effort, she completed the cyclization of aromatic systems by both acid-mediated and radical-mediated methods to form the densely functionalized carbocyclic core of zoanthenol. She then joined the group of Prof. Samuel J. Danishefsky at the Sloan-Kettering Institute at MSKCC. Her research efforts during this time spanned several areas including the study of isonitrile-based methods for amide bond formation, the application of these reactions to the synthesis of cyclosporine, the conversion of N-formyl amides to optically active hydantoins, and the total chemical synthesis of the pituitary glycoprotein human thyroid-stimulating hormone (hTSH). She joined the faculty of the Department of Chemistry at Wayne State University as an Assistant Professor in July 2012. Jenn’s research program focuses on novel strategies for the synthesis of neuroactive and potentially neuroactive molecules.

Honors and Awards

Contact Information:

Office: 277 Chemistry
Phone: (313) 577-2605
Fax: (313) 577-2099

Mailing Address:
Department of Chemistry
Wayne State University
5101 Cass Ave
Detroit, MI 48202


Favorite Animals: (L) Molly begs for a sardine, (R) Quincy studies Phys Org, (Bottom) Cody takes over Molly’s crate)

2015-01-25 18.40.07       2014-12-07 17.27.00

2014-12-17 17.11.48

Favorite Street Artist from NYC:

Favorite Poem:

There are the rushing waves…
mountains of molecules,
each stupidly minding its own business…
trillions apart
…yet forming white surf in unison.

Ages on ages…
before any eyes could see…
year after year…
thunderously pounding the shore as now.
For whom, for what?
…on a dead planet
with no life to entertain.

Never at rest…
tortured by energy…
wasted prodigiously by the sun…
poured into space.
A mite makes the sea roar.

Deep in the sea,
all molecules repeat
the patterns of another
till complex new ones are formed.
They make others like themselves…
and a new dance starts.

Growing in size and complexity…
living things,
masses of atoms,
DNA, protein…
dancing a pattern ever more intricate.

Out of the cradle
onto dry land…
here it is standing…
atoms with consciousness
…matter with curiosity.

Stands at the sea…
wonders at wondering… I…
a universe of atoms…
an atom in the universe.

  –  Richard P. Feynman