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Office Hours

M 02:30 PM-04:30 PM
T 09:30 AM-11:30 AM
R 01:00 PM-02:00 PM
F 10:30 AM-11:30 AM

 Dr. Lucas J. Tucker is respected for his work inside and outside of the classroom at Siena College. His research efforts have resulted in multiple publications (journal articles, patents, and proceedings) and over a dozen (local, regional, and national) presentations, in the areas of pedagogy polymer chemistry, liquid crystalline holography, photoresist material synthesis, green methodology, and linear free energy relationships. Dr. Tucker has worked primarily in academia, but has also been the the VP of Product Development with a start up company, and served as an R & D Fellow during his sabbatical.

Lucas attended Marist College and he graduated with a B.S. in Chemistry.  From there he continued on to Syracuse College where he earned his Ph.D. in Chemistry under Michael Sponsler. His thesis is titled “Liquid Crystalline Holography: The Effect of Various Additives on Photopolymerization”. As the VP of Product Development Lucas has directed contract work from one of the leading pressure sensitive adhesives companies in the country resulting in three patents and a nationally available sports enhancement product. His work as an R & D fellow extended the knowledge of tire rubber polymerization kinetics.

Lucas primarily teaches organic and general chemistry where he focuses his efforts on providing the best education possible to students. In 2012, Dr. Tucker was awarded "Lecturer of the Year" by the Siena College student senate.

Lucas resides in Waterford, NY with his wife and two daughters. Something most don’t know about Lucas: He has hiked to the highest point of 22 states.

Degree Program University
Ph.D. Chemistry Syracuse University
B.S. Chemistry Marist College

My Siena Experience

My Teaching Philosophy

 The application of oneself to teaching is an act of dedication. This is not an occupation that can be done well by someone who lacks a true desire to change the lives of their students and to inspire them. Teaching is an attempt to instill a desire to learn and to provide the tools for doing so. I feel that interactive classes in which the students are expected to share their  analysis with the class fosters the sort of self-teaching that students will need for the rest of their lives. The success that I have had with this method can be highlighted by the fact that the student senate elected me “Lecturer of the Year” in 2012. 


In teaching chemistry it is more important that the students understand the processes of molecular interaction instead of memorizing the facts. Students who develop the analytical thought process enhance their ability to discover original ideas when they enter research of their own. It is important that students understand chemistry is a work in progress and not a series of facts to be memorized that will never change. This is especially important for non-majors to use the information from our class to better understand their own academic  pursuits. 

It is my focus to provide students with the tools necessary to learn and the support to understand those things that they don't. 

 

What I Love About Siena

 Siena College students are on average motivated and respectful. If you can determine any error in their learning process they are on average willing to try to address these issues. I enjoy teaching general and organic chemistry because so many of our students learn how to learn in these courses. They see that application of their own efforts results in improvement and this changes their ability to succeed in life as well as my courses.

My Favorite Courses to Teach

 Organic chemistry is my favorite course to teach. The materials is facinating and beautiful. There is a moment during the second semester for a lot of students where the interrelated nature of the material becomes clear and the subject just clicks. This is often called chemical intuition. Assisting my students in their development of chemical intuition is very rewarding.

My Professional Experience

Year Title University
2014 - Now Associate Professor, Chemistry & Biochemistry Siena College
2006 - 2014 Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry Siena College

Current Research

 Research offers students the ability to apply talents garnered through their course work and to flesh out their understanding of “doing” science. Through their research work, my students learn how to first understand the question that they are attempting to address and then use literature procedures to design methods of pursuing their particular problem. I have included 21 different students in my research group for a total of over 6000 hours of research. This has lead to 12 presentations of our work, 7 of which were at national conferences. 

The Tucker research group investigates a wide variety of subjects including rubber additives, grip technology, pedagogy, green chemistry, science education, nanomaterials, polymers and especially liquid crystalline materials. Our LC materials projects have ranged from green synthesis to photoresist technology to generation of liquid crystalline sensors. 

Articles & Book Reviews

  • Impact of the Siena College Tech Valley Scholars Program on Student Outcomes.
    Journal of STEM Education, vol. 17
    2016
  • Using iPads in the Chemistry Classroom: Focusing on Paperless Education and Identification and Directed use of Pedagogically Directed Applications
    Chemical Educator
    2013
  • Holography Via Liquid Crystalline Photopolymerization: The Effect of Various Additives.
    232nd ACS National Meeting & Exposition
    2006
  • Holography via Liquid Crystalline Polymerization: The Effect of Various Additives
    Polymer Preprints, vol. 47
    2006
  • Trithiocarbonate-Mediated Free Radical Photopolymerization: Improved Uniformity In Hologram Recording
    Applied Optics, vol. 45
    2006
  • Sequential Multiphoton Photopolymerization For Hologram Recording Using A Trithiocarbonate As A Raft Reagent.
    230th ACS National Meeting & Exposition
    2005
  • Sequential Multiphoton Photopolymerization For Hologram Recording Using A Trithiocarbonate As A Raft Reagent
    Polymer Preprints, vol. 46
    2005
  • Organotin Hydride Reduction of Benzyl Bromides
    Organometallics, vol. 21
    2002

Awards & Distinctions

  • Jerome Walton excellence in teaching award
    Category: Teaching
    Siena College, 2017
  • Lecturer of the Year
    Category: Teaching
    Siena College, 2012
  • Trustco Bank Award for Excellence
    Category: Research
    Trustco Bank, 2011
  • Phi Lambda Upsilon Chemistry National Honorary Society
    Category: Other
    Phi Lambda Upsilon, 2009

Presentations

  • Collaborative pollution prevention efforts for high school teachers in New York
    2020
    2020 Biennial Conference on Chemical Educatio, Corvalis, Oregon
  • Cholesteric liquid crystalline porphyrin VOC sensors
    2018
    255th ACS National Meeting and Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Community engaged learning to improve STEM student retention.
    2018
    25th Biannual Conference on Chemical Education, South Bend, Indiana
  • Foundations in chemistry course at Siena College
    2018
    25 Biannual Conference on Chemical Education, South Bend, Indiana
  • Knowing your colleagues: The importance of vertical and horizontal cohorts to the success of undergraduate research
    2018
    255th ACS National Meeting and Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Nanomaterial precursor synthesis for use in organic chemistry laboratory
    2018
    255th ACS National Meeting and Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Siena College general chemistry performance expectations.
    2018
    25 Biannual Conference on Chemical Education, South Bend, Indiana
  • Building a community around general chemistry performance expectations
    2017
    254th ACS National Meeting and Exposition, Washington, District of Columbia
  • Designing green chemistry outreach for nonscientists: A teach the teacher model.
    2017
    21st Annual Green Chemistry and Engineering Conference, Reston, Virginia
  • Engaging high school teachers in green chemistry
    2016
    41st Annual Northeast Regional Meeting of the ACS, Binghamton, New York
  • Making high school labs greener: A discussion of the evaluation process.
    2016
    24th Biannual Conference on Chemical Education, Greeley, Colorado
  • Siena College First Year Research Fellows
    2016
    24th Biannual Conference on Chemical Education, Greeley, Colorado
  • Siena College Tech Valley Scholars Program and STEM student retention
    2016
    24th Biannual Conference on Chemical Education, Greeley, Colorado
  • Siena College Green Chemistry Workshop
    November, 2015
    120th STANYS Conference, Rochester, New York
  • Green Chemistry and Safety in the Lab Curriculum
    October, 2015
    NYS School Environmental Health Summit, Saratoga Springs, New York
  • Making Labs Greener: A Discussion of the Evaluation Process.
    June, 2015
    Northeast Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society, Ithaca, New York
  • Greening Up the Science Laborotory
    October, 2014
    2014 Diocese of Albany Professional Development Day, Albany, New York
  • Synthesis of discotic liquid crystalline porphyrin precursors
    2013
    245th ACS National Meeting and Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Using Tablet Monitors and Computers to Teach Organic Chemistry
    2013
    47th Annual Meeting of MAALACT, Reading, Pennsylvania
  • Using tablet monitors and computers to teach organic chemistry
    2013
    245th ACS National Meeting and Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Using iPads in the Chemistry Classroom: Steps toward a Fully Paperless Classroom
    March, 2011
    243rd American Chemical Society National Meeting and Exposition, San Diego, California
  • A Green Synthesis of a Cholesteric Liquid Crystal
    2011
    Eastern New York ACS Undergraduate Research Poster Session, Loudonville, New York
  • Polyesterification of Maleic Acid with Various Diols
    2011
    Eastern New York ACS Undergraduate Research Poster Session, Loudonville, New York
  • Synthesis of Cholesteric Liquid Crystalline Porphyrins
    2011
    243rd American Chemical Society National Meeting and Exposition, San Diego, California
  • Green synthesis of (E)-10,13-dimethyl-17-(6-methylheptan-2-yl)-2,3,4,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17-tetradecahydro-1H-cyclopenta[a]phenanthren-3-yl 6-(4-(3-(4-methoxyphenyl)acryloyl)phenoxy)hexanoate.
    2010
    240th National ACS meeting, Boston, Massachusetts
  • A Green Methodology Toward the Condenstation Polymerization of Diols with Diacids under UV Light and Room Temperature.
    2009
    Eastern New York ACS Undergraduate Research Poster Session, Loudonville, New York
  • Kinetics of a potassium sulfate, Potassium Iodide Reaction: Expansion to a Multiweek Experiment.
    2009
    238th ACS National Meeting and Exposition, Washington, District of Columbia
  • Synthesis and Copolymerization of Cyanvinylbenzylcinnamate and MPAEB to Result in Liquid Crystalline Photoresist Materials
    2009
    Eastern New York ACS Undergraduate Research Poster Session, Loudonville, New York
  • Synthesis and Copolymerization of MPAEB and 4-vinylbenzyl-4'-cyano cinnamate For Use in Liquid Crystalline Photoresist Technology
    2009
    238th ACS National Meeting and Exposition, Washington, District of Columbia
  • Liquid Crystalline Materials For Sensing and Photoresist Technology.
    2008
    236th ACS National Meeting & Exposition, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Synthesis of 4-vinylbenzyl-4'-cyano cinnamate For Use in Photoresist Technology as a Liquid Crystalline Monomer.
    2008
    235th ACS National Meeting & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Holography Via Liquid Crystalline Photopolymerization: The Effect of Various Additives.
    2006
    232nd ACS National Meeting & Exposition, San Francisco, California
  • Holography Via Liquid Crystalline Photopolymerization: The Effect of Various Additives.
    2006
    Northeast Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society, Binghamton, New York
  • Sequential Multiphoton Photopolymerization For Hologram Recording Using A Trithiocarbonate As A Raft Reagent.
    2005
    230th ACS National Meeting & Exposition, Washington, District of Columbia
  • New Liquid Crystalline Monomer for the Formation of Dynamic Holographic Gratings.
    2004
    Northeast Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society, Rochester, New York