Sam Yruegas is a PhD student in the Department of Chemistry at Baylor University working with Dr. Caleb Martin. She received her undergraduate degree at Texas A&M University in 2014 as a Regents’ Scholar where she worked in the group of Professor Oleg Ozerov studying carborane salts of electrophilic transition metal pincer complexes. Her graduate research continues on the theme of boron chemistry although a different direction. Sam’s efforts are aimed at synthesizing unusual tri-coordinate boron species and subsequently exploring their reactivity and electronic properties. Specifically, replacing boron and a lone-pair bearing heteroatom for a C=C unit in benzene results in heteroarenes which have great potential in electronic materials and pharmaceuticals.
Sam Yruegas is a first generation student that is an advocate for diversity exemplified by her activity in the Society of Mexican American Engineers and Scientists, Women in Science and Engineering local chapter, and membership on the ACS Chemists with Disabilities committee. She produces instructional videos available to the open public on air-sensitive manipulations including glovebox maintenance and Schlenk techniques. Throughout her PhD, Sam has mentored undergraduates from diverse underrepresented backgrounds. Sam coordinates chemical education outreach partnerships with local charitable organizations that are aimed to assist low income youth and homeless high school students succeeding in future careers. Upon completion of her PhD, she will begin a post-doctoral position in the laboratory of Dr. Paul Chirik at Princeton University