Cheryl S. Schnitzer


Dr. Cheryl Schnitzer received her B.A. in Chemistry in 1994 from Skidmore College (Saratoga Springs, NY) with a minor in Environmental Studies. Her undergraduate research involved studying temporal and seasonal trends of ions in acid deposition in the laboratory of Dr. Judy Halstead.  She earned her Ph.D. in 1999 at Tufts University (Medford, MA) where she worked in the laboratory of Dr. Mary Jane Shultz. For her graduate research, she examined an aspect of ozone depletion using a nonlinear spectroscopy called sum frequency generation. While finishing her dissertation, she worked as a laboratory assistant and instructor at Suffolk University.

Professor Schnitzer joined the Stonehill Department of Chemistry in the fall of 2000. She teaches general, environmental, and physical chemistry. She coordinates the ACS program Project SEED, serves on several committees, and gives talks about the chemistry of climate change. Currently, she works with several students and Professor Mevan Gunawardena (Physics Department) to study artificial photosynthesis in the light harvesting 2 complex of a purple bacteria using femtosecond laser spectroscopy. Previously, her research focused on using a bubble column to partition ions and purify biodiesel. In addition, she has studied copper chlorophyllin using surface enhanced resonance Raman scattering.


  • Schnitzer, C. “Project SEED” Northeastern Section of the American Chemical Society, Summer 2007, $3,000.
  • Schnitzer, C. and Liotta, L. “Project SEED” American Chemical Society, Summer 2007, $3,000.
  • Schnitzer, C. “Project SUCCESS and Project SEED” DuPont Center for Collaborative Research and Education, Spring 2006, $8,303.
  • Schnitzer, C. “Developing a Model of Metal Complexes at the Gas-Liquid Interface Using a Novel Bubble Column” Research Corporation Cottrell College Science Awards, Awarded Fall 2002 (began funding Summer 2005), $37,025.
  • Membership in Professional Societies and Nominations to Honor Societies: American Chemical Society, Council on Undergraduate Research , Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Xi
  • C. Schnitzer, “Global Warming. Learn what it is. Learn what you can do.” Several Talks, Stonehill College
  • The First Year Experience Committee, Stonehill College
  • Coordinator for the ACS program Project SEED, Stonehill College

Research Interests

  • Improving the effectiveness and efficiency of wastewater remediation of heavy metals using a “bubble column” apparatus.
  • Using a technique called Surface-Enhanced Resonance Raman Scattering (SERRS) to study the molecule copper chlorophyllin, a derivative of chlorophyll.
  • Using the bubble column to purify biodiesel which is derived from waste vegetable oil. This work relates to climate change by reducing our dependence on fossil fuel.

Courses Taught

  • Physical Chemistry I
  • Physical Chemistry II
  • General Chemistry I
  • General Chemistry II