Natural Sciences Dean
Where are you from?
I am from New Jersey, and my parents are from Ecuador.
Hi! My name is Veronica Jaramillo. I am a first-generation Latina as both my parents are from Ecuador. I am originally from the Northeast, specifically I was born in New Jersey. I earned a Bachelor of Science in both Mathematics and Chemistry at a small liberal arts college, Moravian College and then continued to earn my doctorate in Chemistry from the University of Arizona. GO CATS! For my doctoral thesis, I studied the rates and mechanisms of chemical reactions under stratospheric conditions. My measured reaction rates are used in JPL’s models of atmospheric chemistry. After graduate school, I moved to Pasadena and worked at a small Biotech startup company, Calhoun Vision, where I worked on testing intraocular lens quality and designed light irradiation systems. This worked was interesting, but I missed teaching and felt the pull to become an educator. My first academic professorship was at East Los Angeles College (ELAC) where I earned tenure and started an ACS affiliated Chemistry club. Then I had my son and decided I wanted to teach in the community I lived in and so I earned a faculty position at PCC. At PCC, I have again earned my tenure, again helped students begin an ACS affiliated Chemistry Club, am the Physical Science Department Chair and the Vice President of the Academic Senate.
What made me focus on Chemistry is my love of experiments and doing research, so I have tried to help give students this opportunity. I was the Principal Investigator for an NSF ATE grant at PCC funded by the National Science Foundation. The project involved creating a tiered early research experience beginning with course embedded research experiences, to research methods course or mentored research experience, and then a research internship at partner institutions (Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL), Huntington Medical Research Institute (HMRI), Oak Crest Institute of Science and California Polytechnic State University, Pomona). Also, at PCC, I was actively involved in developing a peer and faculty mentoring program for underrepresented students. I have acted as and am currently a faculty mentor for students doing research and am the advisor for the PCC Chemistry Club.
Science Outreach is also a passion of mine. So, I am very active in my professional organization, the American Chemical Society (ACS), at both the local and national level. At the local level I am the Councilor for the Southern California ACS section (SCALACs) and co-chair of their Women’s Chemist Committee. I was recognized by SCALACs with Agnes Ann Green Award for Distinguished Service. I am also active on the national level by being a member of the ACS’s Committee on Community Activities and co-chair for the Volunteer and Engagement Recognition Committee. This professional work focusses on bringing chemistry to ALL communities and to make ALL know they can do Chemistry and Chemistry IS FUN!
Administrative Assistant II
Where are you from?