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Michael Polen
  • Lecturer of Chemistry

Michael Polen

Contact Dr. Polen

I graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a Ph.D. in Chemistry in 2018 and started teaching at McDaniel immediately afterward. At CMU I studied the impacts of particles from combustion (e.g. wildfires) on the formation and lifetime of cloud droplets. My studies mostly centered on the analytical and environmental chemistry. Outside of research, I also devoted a large amount of time bringing science to underprivileged students in Pittsburgh, PA.

At McDaniel, I am teaching the General Chemistry classes and I am spending my first summer improving and optimizing the General Chemistry Lab courses with some of our first/second year students. I believe firmly in giving students every opportunity I can offer as early as possible. Future research in my group will likely involve the efforts being explored at the Singleton-Matthews property and use my expertise in environmental and analytical chemistry. I am also planning to start my own STEM outreach to bring science to local grade and high schools.


Ph.D. in Chemistry, Carnegie Mellon University
B.S. in Chemistry, Widener University

Research Interests

  • Improving general chemistry labs

  • Development of a STEM Learning Center

  • Impacts of particles on cloud formation/lifetime

  • Partitioning of pollutants between water/soil/air

Recent Courses

  • CHE 1103: General Chemistry I

  • CHE 1104: General Chemistry II

  • CHE 1001: General Chemistry I Lab

Michael Polen

Contact Dr. Polen