Dr. Strickland began her duties as assistant professor of chemistry in August of 2006. While at Converse, she has taught Organic Chemistry (I and II), Advanced Organic Chemistry, Quantitative Analysis, Concepts of Chemistry (for non-science majors), IDC (Ideas and Culture) and Biochemistry. Prior to her position at Converse, Dr. Strickland also taught General Chemistry (I and II). Dr. Strickland and her students explore connections: the connections between the information provided by various types of spectroscopy and the structures of organic molecules, the connections between the structures of organic molecules and their reactivity, and the connections between chemistry and the rest of life.
Dr. Strickland’s research interests include various aspects of Green Chemistry and Organic Synthesis. She and her students explore the development and optimization of microscale organic experiments, in an effort to develop chemical methods and reactions on a scale that uses much smaller quantities of chemicals and generates much less chemical waste. They have investigated the use of Bronsted Acid Surfactant Catalysts as a way of performing traditional organic reactions in water instead of in traditional organic solvents and the use of Liquid Phase Microextraction as a way of isolating pesticides in produce using much smaller quantities of organic solvents than are used in traditional extractions. She is currently working on the optimization of the organic synthesis of self-assembling macrocycles, which are large cyclic structures that use hydrogen bonding to stack one on top of the other and form a tall stack of molecules having a channel of definite shape and size that can then be used as filters, chambers for specific reactions, or drug delivery systems.
Her interdisciplinary interests include the use of computer animations as a means of helping students understand the role of atomic orbitals in covalent bond formation and bond breaking. This can also be used to understand how the predictable movements of these orbitals produce the observed changes in atom placement and in the configuration of stereogenic centers. She is the co-director (along with biologist Dr. Neval Erturk) of CSI: Converse!, a summer forensics workshop for high school students that explores the application of chemical and biological methods to fictional forensic cases.