Heather Neu

UW-Superior was the beginning of preparing me for everything I do now, and I am so happy to be a woman in science.
From the small Minnesota town of Cromwell with a population of less than 300 to Baltimore, Maryland, the 29th most populous city in the country, Heather Neu has expanded her horizons thanks to science and her start at UW-Superior. 

“I knew I wanted to study chemistry,” said Heather. “UW-Superior had a great Chemistry program, plus smaller class sizes, so I really liked it. I got that in-depth, all-inclusive education.” 

Heather also worked at the Lake Superior Research Institute (LSRI) during her time of study at UW-Superior to get even more out of her education. 

“The work at LSRI was interesting and I loved that I could get hands-on experience while I worked on my degree,” she said. 

Heather learned about another great opportunity to do even more research on-campus through the McNair Scholars Program. This time, she could research on any topic of her choice. 

“I had always wanted to do research in synthetic chemistry, and this was my chance,” Heather said. “It was really nice to be able to do this research independently and find which path of chemistry was right for me.” 

McNair also provided Heather with GRE exam prep and even exposed her to new connections and on-campus networking. 

“Students from every single department can join McNair. I was able to interact with people I probably would have never had a chance to talk to,” she explained. “Along with being able to practice real life interviewing skills and gain the knowledge needed for graduate school, McNair helped build me up for the future.” 

Heather went on to get her master’s in Chemistry at the University of Minnesota Duluth and then her Ph.D. at Johns Hopkins University. She now works at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy where she is a postdoctoral fellow conducting research on a FDA clinical trial. 

“I currently have 14 publications from my master’s and Ph.D. McNair jumpstarted my future in publishing just as working with LSRI jumpstarted my future in research,” she said. “UW-Superior was the beginning of preparing me for everything I do now, and I am so happy to be a woman in science.”  

For her research, Heather was also recently awarded an ACS Division of Inorganic Chemistry Young Investigator Award. The award is given to recognize research that is outstanding in the field. 

The McNair Scholars Program works with low-income, minority, and first generation undergraduate students, encouraging them to consider careers in college teaching and to prepare them for doctoral study. Contact the McNair Scholars Program to get more information about how they can help you attain your goal of going to graduate school.