The Career Services office seeks to provide guidelines, resources, and opportunities to School of Chemical Sciences job seekers to help them achieve their career aspirations relevant to their academic interests and to facilitate and support connections between employers and those job seekers. Whether you are seeking a career in industry, higher education, or seeking to gain practical experience through a summer or semester internship, or co-op, we can help.

Patricia Simpson
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Academic Advising & Career Services

Patricia Simpson joined the University of Illinois’ School of Chemical Sciences in August 2007 and now serves as the Director of Academic Advising and Career Services, where she oversees all aspects of the unit. Prior to that, she served as the Director of Career Services for the University of North Alabama for eight years. After obtaining a B.A. in Communications and English, she worked as an Admissions Counselor in South Dakota and as a Career Counselor at Azusa Pacific University in California where she also acquired her M.Ed. in College Student Affairs. Patricia serves as the ACS Webinars Careers Channel Moderator and on the UI Career Services Council.  She is also the former Past President of the Midwest Association of Colleges and Employers and a 2016 Knights of St. Patrick Kay Kappes Golden Shamrock winner.

In her (limited) free time, Patricia is the owner/consultant of Game Changing Etiquette.  She is passionate about helping students find their unique strengths and serving as a connection for them with employers and alumni to enable them to achieve their professional goals, while also seeking to support employers with all of their recruiting needs.  

Jennifer Tasneem
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Career Services Coordinator 

Jennifer Tasneem began working at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign School of Chemical Sciences in March 2020. She received her B.A. in Chemistry from Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts. Following that, she obtained her M.S. in Materials Science and Engineering at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Her interest in career advising began during her undergraduate years when she was a Peer Career Advisor at the Career Development Center at Mount Holyoke. Even during her graduate studies, alongside academic research, Jennifer was the first Graduate Peer Advisor at the Engineering Career Center at Cornell where she spearheaded advising sessions for graduate students in the College of Engineering and loved working with students.

Originally from Bangladesh, Jennifer loves cooking and baking traditional meals from her home country. As an avid DIY-er she also enjoys painting and all things related to interior design. Jennifer works exclusively with students and strives to support and equip them with resources for lifelong academic and career success and is passionate about empowering students in STEM.


Kelly Nowlin

Recruiting Coordinator

Kelly Nowlin began working in the School of Chemical Sciences in August 2023, transitioning from her prior position as the executive director of the Champaign-Urbana Theatre Company, a role she held for eight years.  Demonstrating a strong commitment to inclusivity, she championed the introduction of the Penguin Project® to the local community.  This innovative theatre initiative focuses on empowering youth with disabilities through transformative theatrical experiences.

In her new capacity, Kelly looks forward to collaborating with recruitment professionals, career services experts, and academic advisors.  She aspires to collectively help students discover their most fitting academic and professional trajectories, akin to the process actors undergo in finding their perfect on-stage roles.

Beyond her professional endeavors, she intends to remain involved in community theater, whether that be contributing behind the scenes, enjoying performances, or occasionally being in the spotlight herself.  She notably earned a regional award for outstanding performance in a feature role for her monologue in Love, Loss, and What I Wore.

Kelly enjoys spending time with her husband and staying connected with her adult twin sons.  This same sense of connection and encouragement serves as the foundation of her approach to assisting students.  She is enthusiastic about leveraging her diverse experiences to assist the career services and advising teams to help students realize their career aspirations.



SCS Career Services Student Ambassadors


My name is Sydney Nelson, and I am a junior in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, and also work at the SCS Career Services Office as a Student Am


bassador. Additionally, I also do research on campus studying hydrogel mechanics and culturing hematopoietic stem cells in these gels to study their behavior and learn more about their role in the bone marrow.


 I chose chemical engineering as a major because I love science, specifically chemistry, and wanted to see how the principles of engineering are used to design chemical processes from the cellular level all the way to manufacturing scale. After graduation, I plan to go to industry and ideally work for a pharmaceutical company because I love using chemistry and problem-solving tactics to help deliver life-saving medications to patients!


I love my job as an SCS Career Services Ambassador because there are so many different tasks that I get to do every day! Not only do I get to assist in the office with coordinating and preparing for recruiting events, but I get to attend many of the information sessions our office hosts and assist the recruiters running the sessions. This is a great way to network with many employees from highly ranked companies in different industries. In addition to all these amazing opportunities, the people in the office are incredible to work with and have taught me so much about my own career choices and given me great guidance! Come stop by and see our office!




My name is Anushka Chauhan, and I am a junior majoring in chemistry and pursuing a minor in computer science and I am also working at the SCS Career Services Office as a Student Ambassador. I chose my major and minor due to my interest in pharmaceuticals and biotech. The combination of chemical sciences and computer science has allowed me to explore the technical side of physical sciences and really learn and grow in both fields. I have been a part of many organizations on campus during my time here. I am a part of Alpha Chi Sigma (AXE), Women in Chemical Sciences (WiCS), and the American Chemical Society (ACS). I am also a part of an analytical chemistry research group on campus as an undergraduate research assistant. My plans for after graduation are to hopefully go into industry, specifically related to pharmaceuticals or biotechnology.


The Career Services office has been such a great place to work! During my time here, I have learned so much about the different career paths available, as well as how to network and make connections with recruiters. I get to attend info sessions that the career services office hosts, where I am responsible for assisting recruiters in running the sessions. Being a part of the Career Services office has allowed me to really understand how to make career decisions and how to approach different opportunities! The guidance and resources that I have received from the office have been amazing!





Our Services

Access to the online job system, Handshake @ Illinois
Handshake @ Illinois is the career services platform at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign which offers 24-hour access to summer or semester internships, co-ops, and full-time employment opportunities as well as information on company events, contacts, and workshops presented by Career Services. Information (major, minor, class year, etc.) is pulled every other business day once you are registered for classes.  You can customize other information (GPA, graduation date, demographic information) as well as your profile to send emails about activities aligned with your interests.  By logging into your Handshake @ Illinois account, you are agreeing to abide by the Handshake @ Illinois User Agreement.

On-campus employment interviews
There are two on-campus industrial recruiting seasons – fall and spring. The fall season beginning in September is the most active. B.S., M.S., Ph.D. and postdoctoral candidates seeking full-time employment should be prepared to actively interview in the fall semester prior to their graduation. Undergraduates seeking summer or semester internships or co-op employment should be prepared to actively interview in the fall and spring semesters.

Resume & cover letter reviews
Make an appointment with a Career Services professional who will sit down with you to review your resume, cover letters, educational philosophy, and/or other application materials.

Mock Interviews
Improve your interviewing skills by participating in a mock interview. The best way to prepare is to practice.

Workshops & seminars
Make sure you are prepared for your job search with workshops on each step of the recruiting process, from writing a resume to evaluating a job offer. You can request a workshop by completing this form.

Job search assistance
Meet with an experienced Career Services professional for personal assistance with identifying job search resources, career planning, job offer evaluation and negotiation.

Career Fairs
Engineering Career Services Career Fairs (fall and spring)
ACES + LAS Career Fair (fall)
Research Park Career Fair (spring)
Illini Career & Internship Fair (spring)

Negotiating and networking support
Do you have a job offer? Career Services can help you in the negotiation process. You have heard the term networking, but not quite sure how to go about it? Career Services can show you how.