John Matson, an associate professor of chemistry in the College of Science at Virginia Tech, has been named the Dr. A.C. Lilly Jr. Faculty Fellow in Nanoscience by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

The Dr. A.C. Lilly Jr. Faculty Fellowship was established by the namesake who earned a bachelor’s degree in geological sciences in 1956 and a Ph.D. in physics in 1989, both from Virginia Tech. He served on advisory boards with the College of Science and its predecessor, the College of Arts and Sciences. The fellowship provides support for outstanding faculty members dedicated to the field of nanoscience. The appointment is for three years and is renewable.

A member of the Virginia Tech Department of Chemistry since 2012, Matson’s research focuses on soft and hybrid hard-soft nanoscale materials inspired by natural nanostructures. He and his team of students and postdocs are currently investigating the use of water-soluble nanohelices made from peptides as platforms for drug delivery, catalysis, and enhanced sensing.

Matson has written more than 70 publications in leading research journals and has given more than 60 invited conference and departmental presentations. He currently serves on the editorial advisory boards for a number of research journals including Polymer Chemistry, Journal of Polymer Science, and Polymer International. He is also currently a titular member of the Polymer Division of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry.

Matson has received research grants from the National Science Foundation (Division of Chemistry and Division of Materials Research), the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of General Medical Sciences), the Binational Science Foundation (Israel), the Army Research Office, the American Chemical Society, the Dreyfus Foundation and the Humboldt Foundation (Germany). In 2018, he was selected as a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar, an award that honors emerging young faculty in the chemical sciences.

Matson received bachelor’s degrees in chemistry and German from Washington University in St. Louis in 2004, and a Ph.D. in chemistry from the California Institute of Technology in 2009. He also served as a postdoctoral associate at Northwestern University from 2009 to 2012.

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