We are a dynamic and visionary organization committed to improving people’s lives in our community through the transforming power of chemistry. We strive to advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of Kalamazoo, Allegan and Van Buren counties.
In October, our 29th annual Chemistry Day at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum was a great success. Eighty volunteers presented over twenty activities and experiments to 1,000 attendees! Stay tuned for news about our 30th annual Chemistry Day in October 2016.
We ended the year at Bell's in November for our Recycle-A-Poster event. It was great to see the breadth of science occurring in the local community, and Karson Putt's presentation on inhibiting the progression of malaria was very well received.
In addition to these events, our section also sponsored two Project SEED students this year, we completed our third Climate Science Event for local teachers, we had events at two venues for Chemists Celebrate Earth Day, we co-sponsored Dr. Daniel Rabinovich's Chemistry on Stamps talk a WMU, and we supported both the WMU CGSA Spring Picnic and the Kalamazoo College DowBQ.
Stay tuned, as the first announcements from our 2016 event schedule should be coming your way after the holidays.
Photos by Elena Hines
By Angela Willson
23 Members voted in our online election for Alternate Councilor and Secretary. Dr. Doug Williams was elected to continue as our Alternate Councilor and Angela Willson was elected to continue as Secretary. Congratulations to our officers and thank you for your continued service to our local section.
By Angela Willson
Haverhill Elementary School in Portage celebrated their second annual Halloween Science Day on October 30th. They invited Angela Willson to return to kick off the day with a full school assembly. The 450 elementary students experienced spooky science firsthand with many spooky science demonstrations. The focus of our discussion this year was on physical and chemical changes.
The students saw physical changes like dry ice bubbles and pop rocks in soda to see how this is only a physical change as no new carbon dioxide is produced. Doing this demonstration allowed us to break the myth that eating pop rocks and drinking soda will make your stomach explode! The students also got to see chemical reactions like baking soda and vinegar to see how carbon dioxide can be produced through a chemical reaction. The crowd favorite was the Oozing Pumpkin.
Haverhill Elementary School was excited to invite Angela back for another Halloween Science demonstration for next year.
By Sarut Jianrattanasawat
On November 18, 2015 the Chemistry Graduate Student Association (CGSA) hosted a Thanksgiving Potluck for the Chemistry undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and staff of the Dept of Chemistry at Western Michigan University. The event was an opportunity for international students and their families to celebrate the American Thanksgiving tradition.
The event was successful and well attended. Thank you to KACS for financial support and helping us make this a great event.
Thank you to Kelly Current and Don Kidd for making the turkey for the Thanksgiving potluck.
By Sarut Jianrattanasawat
On September 25, 2015 the Chemistry Graduate Student Association (CGSA) hosted an ice cream social for the undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and staff of the Department of Chemistry. The aim of this event was to introduce the new students to the existing student body. With more than 60 people attending, students were able to make new connections, get to know the student organizations as well as catch up with old friends. Thank you KACS for helping us make this a successful event.
Hello, Kalamazoo-area chemists! I am excited to be the next local section Communications Chair. While I know it will be nearly impossible to fill David Bolliet's empty seat, I will do my best to keep you informed about community events and news. However, before I get to work, I thought you might like to know a little about me. While I was born and raised right here in Kalamazoo, it was only recently that I was again able to call this place home after nearly twenty years away. So, here is my story…
I attended Valparaiso University where I graduated in 1999 with honors in Chemistry. During two of my undergrad summer vacations I completed internships right here in Kalamazoo at Pharmacia & Upjohn (1998) and Pharmacia (1999) before heading off to graduate school. I completed my doctoral work in Richard Silverman's lab at Northwestern University were I studied MOA-B inactivators (2004). At this point I left the shores of Lake Michigan to live in the desert of Arizona. For ten years I was a full-time teaching faculty at Arizona State University where I oversaw the undergraduate organic chemistry teaching labs (~1200 students) and taught ground and online organic chemistry lectures (~400 students). While at ASU my scholarly interests focused on the use of media in chemical education and on improving ways to mentor developing chemistry educators. In the spring of 2011 I was awarded the College of Liberal Arts and Science's Outstanding Lecturer Award. My involvement with ACS local sections began in Arizona, and for two years (2006 & 2007) I was the Central Arizona local section chair.
Despite my positive experiences in Arizona, in the spring of 2014 I left my Senior Lecturer position at ASU to pursue a new challenge as the Chemistry Subject Matter Expert at W. W. Norton and Co, an employee-owned publishing company based out of Manhattan. I work out of my home assisting our online homework faculty users with their courses and developing new chemistry multi-media learning tools with the Norton product team and editorial staff. This new position gave our family the freedom to move back to this much colder climate. (I personally did not like the 120 degree summers!) When not working, I enjoy spending time with my husband Tim, my two children (8 and 6 years old), and my two dogs. Some of my hobbies include reading, rug weaving, home re-modeling (Tim and I flipped three homes in AZ), hiking, bargain-shopping, and meeting new people!
That being said…I look forward to meeting you at an upcoming local section event!
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