Skip to main content

Paul Ha-Yeon Cheong

Paul Ha-Yeon Cheong


Paul is an Associate Professor of Chemistry.

When Paul was born in a small town in South Korea, it was his parent’s life-long dream for their child to be able to settle in the United States. A great many things have happened since then to bring Paul to Oregon. Paul spent most of his youth in Indonesia and Thailand, before coming to the US for his post-secondary education. He was originally an English major in his undergraduate institution of Bowdoin College (Brunswick, ME), before he switched to Chemistry to receive his AB in 2001. He received his Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from UCLA in 2007 under the tutelage of Professor K. N. Houk. After a brief stint as postdoc in the same lab, he started his independent career at Oregon State in 2009.

In every part of his life, Paul always had great advisors around him who were accomplished professionally and were great mentors (Just to name a few: Professors Ellen E. Burns, Elizabeth Stemmler, and Faraj Hasanayn at Bowdoin College; Professor K. N. Houk at UCLA). In becoming a professor of chemistry, he found the perfect match between his love of research and his commitments to pay it forward to future generations.

Paul’s scientific passion is in solving scientific mysteries by discovering and explaining fundamental and practical principles that underlie chemistry and nature. Towards this goal, his group applies state-of-the-art computational chemistry techniques and tools to a wide array of chemical mysteries.

Paul is known for his walking meetings with people and his wide-ranging interests in science, history, and literature. In his spare time, he loves spending time with his family and friends.

Honors and Awards:

  • Loyd F. Carter Award for Outstanding and Inspirational Teaching in Science (Undergraduate) (2023)
  • Bert and Emelyn Professor of Chemistry (2016-2023)
  • OSU Impact Award for Outstanding Scholarship (2015)
  • American Chemical Society (ACS) Young Academic Investigator Award (2014)
  • American Chemical Society (ACS) Representative to EuCheMS Young Investigator Workshop (2014)
  • National Science Foundation (NSF) – CAREER (2014)
  • Phi Kappa Phi Emerging Scholar Award (OSU, 2014)
  • James H. Krueger Teaching Award (OSU, 2012)
  • Vicki and Patrick F. Stone Scholar (2011)
  • Amgen Molecular Postdoctoral Award (UCLA, 2009)
  • Molecular Biology Institute Postdoctoral Award (UCLA, 2009)
  • Thomas L. and Ruth F. Jacobs Award (UCLA, 2007)
  • John Stauffer Award (UCLA, 2006)
  • UCLA Graduate Division Dissertation Year Fellowship (UCLA, 2006)
  • Hypercube Scholar Award (Bowdoin College, 2001)