Dr. Luanne Tilstra is an expert in physical and polymer chemistry.  As part of her research on insulin aggregation, she worked with students to build an instrument that detects the size and shape of insulin clusters.  Dr. Tilstra is a strong advocate of undergraduate research, having supervised students in a variety of projects and accompanied them to regional and national meetings.  Dr. Tilstra established and was the inaugural director of Rose-Hulman’s Center for Diversity; she is currently active in establishing support systems for women faculty and students in STEM.    

Academic Degrees

  • BA, Central College, 1983
  • PhD, Louisiana State University, 1987

Awards & Honors

Publications & Presentations

“Hybrid Course Design in an Upper Level Chemistry Course,” Luanne Tilstra, presented at the Magna Teaching with Technology Conference, St. Louis, MO, October 2018.

“Talking about Privilege in STEM academic departments,” Luanne Tilstra, workshop presented to women STEM faculty participating in the Bryn Mawr (PA) Higher Education Resource Services (HERS) Institute, July 2018.

“Motherhood and Working in the Academy,” workshop presented to women faculty participating in the Bryn Mawr (PA) Higher Education Resource Services (HERS) Institute, July 2018.

“On being a female faculty member in STEM,” on-campus presentation co-hosted by Center for Innovation and the Center for the Practice and Scholarship of Education, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, October 19, 2016.

“Attracting and Retaining Women in STEM,” Webinar hosted by NSF-funded ASAP ADVANCE Alliance, PI Joanne Smeija, April 15, 2016.

“Using Small Group, Peer Mentoring to Support Faculty Development and Career Advancement”, Crossing Boundaries: Transforming STEM Education, AAC&U, Seattle, WA, November 12 – 14, 2015.

“Work/Life Integration for Women in STEM,” Luanne Tilstra, invited talk, Work/Life Integration Conference, Indiana State University, October 2014.

“Modeling the liquid crystalline properties of type-I collagen,” Alexander Thomas and Luanne Tilstra, 247th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society, Washington, D.C., March 2014.
Tilstra, L., “Promoting Diversity and Inclusivity at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology,” (Book Chapter), Career Challenges and Opportunities in the Global Chemistry Enterprise, American Chemical Society Symposium Series, 2014
Tilstra, L., Broughton, A., French, V., Jelski, D., Tanke, R., Thomas, G., Western, A., and Xhu, G., Nanotechnology: An Introductory Textbook, Nova Scientific, 2008
Rezenom, Y. H., Wellman, A. D., Tilstra, L., Medley, C. D., and Gilman, S. D., “Separation and Detection of Individual Submicron Particles by Capillary Electrophoresis with Laser-Light-Scattering Detection,” Analyst, 132, 1215-1222, 2007
Tilstra, L., “Using Journal Articles to Teach Writing Skills for Laboratory Reports in General Chemistry,” Journal of Chemical Education, Volume 78, 762-764, 2001

Research Experiences

  • Self-assembly of supramolecular systems
  • Assessing and promoting the continuing participation of women in STEM careers: post-doctoral and beyond

Teaching Interests

  • Physical chemistry
  • Physical polymer chemistry
  • Nanotechnology
  • Spectroscopy
  • General chemistry
  • Quantum chemistry
  • Chemistry of food
Launch Root Quad