NMR Laboratory Staff Information

NMR Staff March 2023

Left to right: Collete Xu, Dean Olson, Nikki Duay and Lingyang Zhu - March 2023

Photo by: Vincent Kassel

Holiday Party 2021

NMR Staff at SCS Holiday Party on 10 Dec 2021. Left to right: Dean Olson, Quinn Greven, Britney Naolhu, Lingyang Zhu, Nikki Duay and Andre Sutrisno.

NMR Staff Publications
Lab Director

Dean Olson, Ph.D. 

146 Roger Adams Lab
(217) 244-0564
Box 81-5

Responsibilities: Overall Lab Operations

Dean is originally from Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA.


Lingyang Zhu, Ph.D.

55 Noyes Laboratory
Box 34-1
(217) 333-6283

Responsibilities: Solution NMR, Computers, Software, and System Administration

Originally from Liaoning province in China, Lingyang comes to us via Colorado where she spent several years in industry before moving to Illinois.


Yijue (Collette) Xu, Ph.D.

55 Noyes Laboratory
Box 31-1
(217) 333-2586

Responsibilities: Solid-State NMR, Computers, Software, and System Administration


Collette Action Photo

Dr. Yijue (Collette) Xu is originally from Wuhan, China.  She moved to Canada in 2011 for undergraduate studies at the University of Ottawa, followed by graduate school.  Working with Professor David Bryce, Yijue spent most of her doctoral research developing novel, solid-state NMR methods to characterize halogen bonds in various co-crystalline compounds. 

Dr. Xu then went on to a postdoctoral fellowship at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory in Tallahassee, Florida, which has the strongest NMR spectrometer in the world (1500 MHz, 36 Tesla).  At NHMFL, she helped with experimental set-ups and instrument maintenance for internal and external users of the 36 T series-connected hybrid magnet.  Collette gained additional experience with solid-state NMR, including half-integer quadrupolar nuclei applied to glasses and minerals in both organic and inorganic materials.   

Yijue arrived at the University of Illinois in February 2023 as the spectroscopy specialist in solid-state NMR.  She will help users employ the 300WB and 500WB for ssNMR in Noyes Lab, in addition to occasional use of the 750NB for ssNMR in CLSL.

Skittles Backpacking

Although a huge fan of dogs, she has an adorable cat named Skittles, who apparently likes backpacking.

Operations Manager

Nikki Duay

146 Roger Adams Lab
Box 81-5
(217) 333-2041

Responsibilities: General Lab Operations, Newcomer Training, Cryogen Management, Accounting, Safety Compliance

Nikki is originally from the Philippines, and grew up speaking Tagalog. She comes to us from Kraft-Heinz in Champaign, where her kids thought she "cooked Mac and Cheese all day," but she was actually an analytical food chemist. Nikki has a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering.

Nikki, Nikki, Nikki

Research Engineer

John Rosheck
Research Engineer 

121 Noyes Lab
(217) 244-6603

Undergraduate Hourly

Lydia Reed (Since May 2022)


Responsibilities: Liquid nitrogen fills, spinner cleaning, bore swabs, odd jobs


Lydia is studying Chemical Engineering. She enjoys watching movies at the local movie theater in her hometown, Jerseyville, IL. She also enjoys reading and playing cards with her family. Her dream job is to work for Keurig Dr. Pepper in the production of her favorite soda, Dr. Pepper.

Undergraduate Hourly

Zion Odoh (Since May 2023)


Responsibilities: Liquid nitrogen fills, spinner cleaning, bore swabs, odd jobs

Zion Action Photo

Zion is studying Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. She is from Oswego, IL and enjoys reading, teaching herself languages, and drawing. Her goal is to work in the pharmaceutical industry to conduct and oversee pharmaceutical production, medical instrument development, and medicinal research.

Former Staff

Andre Sutrisno, Ph.D.

Solid-State NMR Spectroscopist; June 2014 - August 2022

Former Undergraduate Hourly

Quinn Greven (May 2021 - May 2023)

Nikki, Quinn and Dean

Quinn graduated with a degree in Chemistry with a concentration in Environmental Chemistry.

We thank him for his 2 years of dedicated service in the NMR Lab.

Former Undergraduate Hourly

Britney Naolhu (May 2019 - May 2022)

Britney was in the Honors program for Molecular and Cellular Biology.  She conducted microbiology research under the supervision of Prof. Brenda Wilson in MCB.  Her work investigated protein function and expression in bacterial toxins to understand the mechanism of toxin delivery.  She served as an MCB Peer Advisor and a Student Leader at Carle Hospital.  Britney enjoys travel, adventures, and good food.

LN2 fills

Former Undergraduate Hourly

Patricia (Trish) Mata (May 2019 - July 2021)

Trish last day

We say good-bye to Trish Mata on July 22, 2021, her last day of employment with the NMR Lab.  She faithfully served as one of our undergrad hourlies for over 2 years, handling cryogens, and countless other tasks with aplomb and dedication.  We wish her well in her new position in greater Saint Louis, MO.

Former Undergraduate Hourly

Aliza Siddiqui (Summer 2017-Summer 2019)








Damee Moon (Fall 2016-Winter 2019)