Dr. Raychelle Burks is an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas. Dr. Burks completed her BSc in Chemistry at Northern Iowa University in 2001, her MSc in Forensic Science at Nebraska Wesleyan University in 2008, and her PhD in Analytical Chemistry at the University of Nebraska in 2011. She then took up the position of Postdoctoral Research Associate at Doane College, where she also served as a Visiting Assistant Professor until 2016.
An analytical chemist with crime lab experience, Dr. Burks is focused on creating low-cost colorimetric sensors for detecting chemicals of forensic interest including explosives and illicit drugs. To maximize portability, Dr. Burks’ group utilizes smart phones, along with image analysis, to maximize the field readiness of developed sensor systems. A chemistry enthusiast, Dr. Burks hopes to ignite her students’ appreciation of chemistry through innovative projects, multi-media education tools, and probably far too many pop culture references. She help create and organize SciPop Talks!, a popular talk series blending science and pop culture. Dr. Burks is a popular science communicator, appearing on the Science Channel’s Outrageous Acts of Science, ACS Reactions videos, Royal Society of Chemistry podcasts, and at genre conventions such as DragonCon and GeekGirlCon.
You can check out one of her recent videos here and learn all about whiskey! Don’t miss what is sure to be an exciting seminar by Dr. Burks – register before April 24th!