Chemistry majors attend conference

Brian Lukacsy March 20, 2014 0

The Elizabethtown College’s Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry left its footprint in Texas this week.

The department sent 11 students to the 247th American Chemical Society (ACS) National Meeting and Exposition in Dallas, Texas, between March 15 and 18. Assistant Professor of Chemistry Dr. James MacKay went with nine seniors and two juniors to the conference. The attendees were seniors Kyle Farkas, Shantel Angstadt, Elizabeth Crow, Lauren Eltringham, Daniel Forster, Emily Gockley, Kathryn Olsen, Katie Owens, Amy Wagner, and juniors Christopher Ryan and Stephanie Tretter.

The conference, which was titled “Chemistry & Materials for Energy,” officially started on March 16 and ran until March 20.

At the national conference each year, undergraduate students share their research with professors, people in the industry and other students. One of the 11 students who presented their research at this year’s conference was Eltringham.

“Last semester, eight of us submitted abstracts in hopes of being accepted to present. All eight abstracts were accepted, and we had a great time sharing our research,” Eltringham said. “This was the first time I was able to present my research to an audience, so it was a great experience for me to present what I have been working on to a captive audience.”

The other three students who attended the conference were a part of a Chem Demo exchange or went based on interest. Students share different demos that their Student Affiliates of the American Chemical Society clubs do during outreach programs.

“Our students put together a great demo that involved making silly putty that glowed in ultraviolet light,” Eltringham said.

Angstadt, who was one of the three students who did not present an abstract, visited multiple sessions at the conference to gain experience and knowledge. “I attended a presentation on how to communicate science effectively, and I also participated in a speed networking session where I had the opportunity to meet professionals in academia and industry,” Angstadt said. “It was a great experience to be able to attend such a large conference and be immersed in the professional setting.”

The conference consisted of numerous lectures, discussions and networking events that were geared to the students’ career interests.

“My concentration is education, so on Sunday, Kyle Farkas, who also hopes to teach chemistry at the high school level, and I attended an all-day event about teaching chemistry in high school,” Eltringham said. “It was truly an invaluable experience.”

On Sunday evening, the College’s student chapter of the ACS received an award for the 2012-2013 academic year in recognition of being a commendable chapter based on the outreach and activities accomplished in the past year.

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