Wayland E. Noland, PhD

Title: Organic Chemistry Educator
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States

Wayland Noland, Professor Emeritus, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Educators for dedication, achievements, and leadership in organic chemistry.

Dr. Noland became involved in his profession because he grew up with a strong interest in science. His parents met in graduate school at Wisconsin and were zoologists. He hoped to follow in the footsteps of his father, who was a noted professor at the University of Wisconsin and an outstanding teacher who always tried to be as helpful as possible to his students. In reflection of his career spanning more than six decades, Dr. Noland has imparted his knowledge and expertise to generations of future scientists and feels positive that his work has affected so many lives. While retired, he maintains active within the scientific community with his research and published works. He also continues a strong relationship with alumni and with attending and presenting at conferences such as with the American Chemical Society.

Following in his parents’ footsteps, Dr. Noland first earned a Bachelor of Science from the University of Wisconsin in 1948. He then continued with his academic pursuits at Harvard University, receiving a Master of Science in 1950 and a PhD in chemistry in 1952. Upon graduating, he accepted a teaching position at the University of Minnesota in 1952. He taught as a professor in the department of chemistry at the institution from 1952 until his retirement in 2016. With his retirement, he received the honorary professor emeritus title. During his time with the university, Dr. Noland served as the interim chair of the department of chemistry. Furthermore, he directed the National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates from 1987 to 1993, directed the National Science Foundation Undergraduate Research Program from 1959 to 1970 and consulted for Sun Oil Co.

With the Noland Research Group, research is focused on heterocyclic nitrogen and/or sulfur chemistry, including the chemistry of nitro compounds, with emphasis on synthesis, mechanisms, and submission of compounds for testing for medicinal activity. To date, activity has been found against cancer (in two classes of compounds), AIDS, tuberculosis, and plants, including fungi. Currently, emphasis is also being placed on the synthesis of benzofurazan oxides, nitriles, isonitriles, and their analogs, to observe interactions, especially with halogens, in the crystalline state. This is being carried out in a fruitful collaboration with the late-Professor Emeritus Doyle Britton, who founded the department’s X-ray crystallographic laboratory. In his career, Dr. Noland is most proud of the students that he has mentored throughout the years. He has also received a number of awards, including the Charles E. Brown Faculty Teaching Award, the Institute of Technology Distinguished Teaching Award and the Minnesota Award from the American Chemical Society, among many other accolades. In 1996, he was honored with the Wayland E. Nolan Symposium at his university.

For more information, please visit:

University of Minnesota Faculty Profile

The Noland Research Group 

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