About Us

The Kennedy Research Group is a new team of enthusiastic and interdisciplinary scientists starting at the University of Rochester, Department of Chemistry. We are driven to tackle challenges in catalysis and synthetic chemistry that simultaneously advance society and improve our fundamental understanding of chemical reactivity. We use mechanistic elucidation and understanding to direct the development of chemo-, regio-, and stereoselective catalytic methods for the valorization of chemical feedstocks ranging from petrochemicals, to biomass, to anthropogenic waste. We strive to construct useful building blocks for applications in chemical synthesis (e.g. therapeutics, flavors & fragrances, agrochemicals, materials etc.) while advancing the frontiers of sustainable catalysis. Our pursuits lie at the interface of synthetic organic and organometallic chemistry and draw from state-of-the-art experimental and computational techniques in physical organic and inorganic chemistry. Students in the group can expect to gain experience and expertise in organic & organometallic synthesis & characterization, method development, and mechanistic study along with the critical analysis skills that will prepare them for careers in academia, the pharmaceutical/chemical industries, science policy/writing, and beyond!

Join Us!

The Kennedy Group is excited to team up with motivated and curious students. If you’d like to learn more about how you might fit in with our young group, please reach out!

Admitted Graduate Students: We are recruiting graduate students to join the group in summer/fall 2020. If you are an admitted student with an interest in Synthesis, Catalysis, & Mechanism, you are encouraged to connect with Professor Kennedy by email or at the recruiting weekend in March.

Prospective Graduate Students: Prospective graduate students interested in the PhD program should apply according to the information on the Department of Chemistry webpage.

UR Undergraduates: If you are an undergraduate chemistry major interested in conducting research, email Professor Kennedy with a brief introduction, an explanation of your interests (it’s okay if you’re not sure yet!) and availability, and a current CV or resume.

Prospective Postdoctoral Scholars: Pending the availability of funding, highly qualified postdoctoral candidates will be considered on a rolling basis. Interested applicants should email Professor Kennedy and include a tailored cover letter detailing their research interests and career goals, a curriculum vitae including a list of publications, a brief research summary (1–3 pages), and contact information for two or more professional references including their Ph.D. and current research advisor(s). 



February 1st, 2020

We beat the clock, saved the world, and had a blast in our group-bonding (noncovalent) escape-room challenge. Way to go team!

January 16th, 2020

Dr. Abhishek Kadam joined our group today as a new postdoctoral researcher. Abhishek completed his PhD at Iowa State University working with Prof. Levi Stanley, and we are thrilled to have him join us here in Rochester!

December 5th, 2019

We welcomed our first students to the group. We are thrilled to have graduate students (Katie and Ryan) and undergraduate students (Aliza, Elliot, and Sarah) on the team! Such a group of thinkers…

November 21st, 2019

Check out some of Rose’s postdoctoral research from the Chirik Group, published in a special issue of Advanced Synthesis and Catalysis in honor of Professor Eric Jacobsen’s 60th birthday. Happy birthday, Eric!

Pyridine(diimine) Iron Diene Complexes Relevant to Catalytic [2+2]‐Cycloaddition Reactions
C. Rose Kennedy, Hongyu Zhong, Matthew V. Joannou, and Paul J. Chirik
Adv. Synth. Catal. Accepted Article. DOI: 10.1002/adsc.201901289

May 7th, 2019

Check out some of Rose’s postdoctoral research from the Chirik Group, out now in JACS.

Regio- and Diastereoselective Iron-Catalyzed [4+4]-Cycloaddition of 1,3-Dienes
C. Rose Kennedy, Hongyu Zhong, Rachel L. Macaulay, and Paul J. Chirik
J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2019, 141, 8557–8573. DOI: 10.1021/jacs.9b02443

March 21st, 2019

We are excited to welcome prospective students to the University of Rochester for our inaugural recruiting visit! We can’t wait to meet our incoming cohort of talented, creative, and motivated chemists!

February 19th, 2019

Rose is thrilled to join the faculty at the University of Rochester as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemistry, where the Kennedy group will be tackling challenges in catalysis and organometallic chemistry! Researchers (at all levels) interested in joining are encouraged to reach out.