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October 3, 2012

ULM's American Chemical Society student chapter wins big

The University of Louisiana at Monroe’s student chapter of the American Chemical Society received an Outstanding Chapter Award from the ACS Committee on Education.

ULM's chapter received the award based on its 2011-2012 activities.

Award winning chapters will be recognized in the November/December issue of "inChemistry" magazine and at the ACS Student Chapter Award Ceremony, which will be held at the 245th ACS National Meeting in New Orleans in April. 

The ULM chapter set two major goals for the year: community outreach to children and exploration of career opportunities. ULM was acknowledged by the advisors for “achieving these goals admirably.”

“The national recognition improves the visibility of both our organization and ULM,” said Dr. Laura Beal, instructor of organic chemistry at ULM.

“We will be eligible for ChemLuminary awards in the future.  It is also something that current members can put on their curriculum vitae because it represents both a significant contribution and a real accomplishment.”

As part of the International Year of Chemistry celebration, the ULM chapter prepared two community service events, which involved collecting toys for children and collecting bottled water for the homeless.

ULM chapter members also facilitated a children's learning program within the Ouachita Public Library System, highlighting the importance of work by famous physicist and chemist Marie Curie.

The ULM chapter was also honored as a Green Chemistry Student Chapter. The chapter’s activities highlighted the value of green chemistry to humans and the environment.

“Our ‘green activities’ included demonstrating how to design solar stills for water purification, participating in the toxicology hazardous waste program, comparing the environmental impact of different packing materials, and several presentations on the importance of water purification,” continued Beal

“We are planning some really cool stuff for next Earth Day, and hope to organize more of a campus-wide event.”

Each chapter’s activity reports were reviewed by three external ACS faculty advisors, who provided feedback to consider when planning future activities.

Overall, the ULM chapter was perceived to be vibrant and engaged by the review panel, and commended for “a tremendous year in which they ‘improved people's lives through the transforming power of chemistry,’” according to the board's official report.

The ULM chapter’s activity report was prepared by this year’s ACS President Chelsea Brassell of West Monroe, and Vice President Mary Cooper of Thibodaux.

Other officers include treasurer Kalen Shelfo of Boyce, and secretary Demi Morvant of Thibodaux.

The ULM chapter is gearing up to announce events planned for National Chemistry Week, Oct. 21-27.

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