Milka Montes

Milka Montes

Associate Professor, Department Chair
Chemistry Program
College of Arts and Sciences
Department of Chemistry
ST 1252


University of California Santa Barbara                                     

  • Post-Doctoral Scholar in Environmental Science 2010- 2011

University of Texas at El Paso                                                  

  • Doctor of Philosophy, Chemistry 2005- 2010
  • Bachelor of Science, Chemistry 2000- 2004

Professional Offices Held/Affiliations

  • Chair, Department of Chemistry – UT Permian Basin
  • Campus Director – NSF Funded UT System Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation Program (UT-LSAMP at UT Permian Basin)
  • Co-Director, UT Permian Basin 
  • President, Peer-Led Team Learning International Society (PLTLIS)
  • Texas Academy of Science (Collegiate Academy Counselor)
  • Treasurer, Permian Basin Section of the American Chemical Society 
  • American Chemical Society

Teaching Areas

  • General Chemistry I* & II*
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Instrumental Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Introduction to Research

*Implemented the Peer-Led Team Learning Model 

Research Statement

Analytical and environmental chemistry research revolves around the development of produced water filtration techniques and the synthesis, characterization, and applications of noble metal nanoparticles. Other research projects involve the fate and transport of nanoparticles in the environment, in particular, the use of nanomaterials as Nano-fertilizers for agricultural crops. Research is a critical part of education at UTPB (University of Texas Permian Basin) chemistry. Dr. Montes also engages in chemical education research to promote peer-led team learning as a tool for students' success in their chemistry careers.  

Select Publications

  • Dreyfuss, A.E., Fraiman, A., Montes, M., Hudson, R., Montalvillo Ortega, F., Muniz, J. Piefke, F., Rodriguez, M., Sheila, M., Vargas, K., & Vu, N. (2021). Peer Leading Small Group Discussion During COVID-19. Advances in Peer-Led Learning, 1, 55-67. Online at
  • Borah, S. Goswami, l. Sen, S. Sachan, D. Sarma, H. Montes, M. Peralta-Videa, J., Paksirajan, K. Narayan, M. Selenite bioreduction and biosynthesis of selenium nanoparticles by Bacillus paramycoides SP3 isolated from coal mine overburden leachate. (2021) Environmental Pollution 24, (8), 1607-1611.
  • Islam, Md. T., Dominguez, A., Turley, R. S., Kim, H., Sultana, K. A., Shuvo, MAI., Alvarado-Tenorio, B., Montes, M. O., Lin, Y., Gardea-Torresdey, J. Development of photocatalytic Paint based on TiO2 and photopolymer resin for the degradation of organic pollutants in water. (2020). Science of the Total Environment. 704 135406.
  • Islam, Md; Dominguez, Arieana; Alvarado-Tenorio, Bonifacio; Bernal, Ricardo; Montes, Milka; Noveron, Juan. Sucrose-mediated fast synthesis of zinc oxide nanoparticles for the photocatalytic degradation of organic pollutants in water. Submitted to ACS Omega, 2019.
  • Montes, M. O., Peralta-Videa, J. R., Parsons, J. G., Corral-Diaz, B., Gardea-Torresdey, J. L. (2013). Spectroscopic determination of the toxicity, absorption, reduction, and translocation of Cr(VI) in two Magnoliopsida species. International Journal of Phytoremediation. 15:168-187.
  • Montes, M., Hanna, S. K., Lenihan, H. S., Keller, A. A. (2012). Uptake, accumulation, and biotransformation of metal oxide nanoparticles by a marine suspension-feeder. Journal of Hazardous Materials 225-226; 139-145.