David A. Horner



B.A., Otterbein College

M.S., University of California, Berkeley

Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley


I grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota and Westerville, Ohio.  I earned my B.A. from Otterbein University, where I majored in chemistry with lots of extra courses in math and physics.  I wasn’t very liberal-artsy at Otterbein; all but one of my elective courses were in math, physics, and computer science.  If I had it to do over again I would (1) take some courses in German, a subject I loved in high school and didn’t continue in college, and (2) study abroad. 

Following graduation, I began my Ph.D. studies in physical chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley under the guidance of Prof. Robert E. Connick.  My dissertation dealt with the kinetics of oxygen exchange between S(IV) species and water in aqueous bisulfite solutions.  In 1983 I began my career as a professor in the chemistry and physics departments at North Central College.

My research interest in computational materials science and molecular quantum mechanics developed during several subsequent summers and a sabbatical spent in the research groups of Prof. Henry F. Schaefer III, currently at the University of Georgia, and Dr. Wesley Allen, then at Stanford University.  Since 1993 I have been a visiting member of the Molecular Materials group at Argonne National Laboratory.

One of my most memorable times in my North Central career was teaching in the NCC-in-London program in Fall 2008.  My wife and I loved living in London and exploring that vibrant city, as well as taking weekend trips to other parts of the UK, Ireland, Paris, Berlin, and spending our mid-semester break in Iceland.  If you're a student, take advantage of the opportunity to study abroad! 

I'm a big fan of North Central football and serve as a faculty mentor to the football team.


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