George C. Shields

Department of Chemistry

Furman University

George C. Shields

George Shields is a Professor in the Department of Chemistry at Furman University. He received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees all from the Georgia Institute of Technology. His postdoctoral research on protein-DNA interactions at Yale University and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute was conducted in the laboratory of Professor Thomas Steitz, the 2009 Chemistry Nobel Laureate.

Dr. Shields enjoys a national reputation in the field of undergraduate research, having collaborated with more than 115 undergraduate students in the fields of computational chemistry, structural biochemistry and science education. He received the 2015 American Chemical Society (ACS) Award for Research at an Undergraduate Institution and the 2018 Research Corporation for Science Advancement Transformational Research and Excellence in Education Award (TREE). He was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in 2019, and he received the Council of Undergraduate Research (CUR) Fellow Award in 2020. He is also founder and director of the Molecular Education and Research Consortium in Undergraduate Computational Chemistry (MERCURY), a collaboration of 38 undergraduate research teams at 33 different institutions. He serves on the advisory boards of the Molecular Sciences Software Institute and the Journal of Physical Chemistry.

George’s students have received 34 national awards, including four Fulbright, nine Goldwater, and seven National Graduate fellowships, and 90% of his alumni have pursued advanced degrees in science, medicine, law, and business. His undergraduates have presented at more than 160 national and international conferences. He has received over $6 million in funding to support undergraduate research.

George served as Furman's Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost from 2016-2019. This was preceded by six years at Bucknell University as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and professor in the department of chemistry. He served as founding Dean of the College of Science and Technology at Armstrong Atlantic State University, and he also taught in and chaired the chemistry departments at Hamilton College and Lake Forest College.