Loyola University Chicago

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry


Ciszek, Jacob

Title/s: Associate Professor

Office #: FH-122

Phone: 773.508.3107

E-mail: jciszek@luc.edu

External Webpage: http://homepages.luc.edu/~jciszek



B. S., Chemical Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


PhD., Chemistry, Rice University


Postdoctoral Associate, Northwestern University


American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellow, Northwestern University

Research Interests

The Ciszek group's focus is on the application of complex synthetic molecules to surfaces.  Be it Feringa's molecular motors, thermochromic switches, metal organic frameworks, or geometric macrocycles, over the years chemistry has developed a myriad of molecules that are capable of complex transformations, contain periodic shape yet tunable structure, or display other remarkable properties.  Likewise, materials science and surface chemistry have accumulated decades of knowledge on molecular effects.  We are interested in applying cutting edge synthetic molecules to recently established surface phenomena and rapidly advancing both fields as well as the interface between them.

The group's main focus is on reacting the surfaces of organic semiconductors.  These materials are currently being adapted in the next generation of displays and computing devices, but their interfacial properties are less than desirable.  We are developing the chemical reactions necessary to improve the surface, and thus device behavior, and we analyze the efficiency gains in fabricated devices.  From a fundamental scientific standpoint, the work is fascinating in that many of the rules that apply to both organic chemistry and surface science are only partially applicable this new system.

In addition, we are looking at modulating the work function of metals.  Over the last 20 years scientists have become aware that self-assembled monolayers are capable of changing the properties of surfaces, such as the work function, band gap, and plasmons (nanoparticle surfaces). Changes in the work function have led to more efficient electrical transport and thus more efficient organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs).  Changes in the band gap allows one to tune a surfaces interaction with light.  These are but a few of the properties we seek to address via synthesis of intelligently designed molecules assembled on the surface.


NSF CAREER award, 2011.
Fellow - Office of Naval Research Summer Faculty Research Program, 2011.

Invited speaker at the CeNTech Nanoscience Symposium for Young Scientists, University of Münster, Germany, 2007.

2015 Sujack Family Award for Excellence in Faculty Research.

Selected Publications

Deye, G. J.; Vicente, J. R.; Dalke, S. M.; Piranej, S.; Chen, J.; Ciszek, J. W. “The Role of Thermal Activation and Molecular Structure on the Reaction of Molecular Surfaces” Langmuir 2017, 33, 8140.,

Hopwood, J. P.; Ciszek, J. W. “Solid state and surface effects in thin-film molecular switches” Photochem. Photobiol. Sci. 2017, 16, 1095.

Piranej, S.; Turner, D. A.; Dalke, S. M.; Park, H.; Qualizza, B. A.; Vicente, J.; Chen, J.; Ciszek, J. W. “Tunable interfaces on tetracene and pentacene thin-films via monolayers” CrystEngComm. 2016, 18,6062.

Qualizza, B. A.; Ciszek, J. W. “Experimental survey of the kinetics of acene Diels–Alder reactions” J. Phys. Org. Chem. 201528, 629.

Bartucci, M. A.; Florián, J.; Ciszek, J. W. “Spectroscopic evidence of work function alterations due to photoswitchable monolayers on gold surfaces” J. Phys. Chem. C 2013117, 19471.

Qualizza, B. A.; Prasad, S.; Chiarelli, M. P.; Ciszek, J. W. “Functionalization of organic semiconductor crystals via the Diels–Alder reaction” Chem. Commun201349, 4495.‚Äč

Publication list via Google Scholar.