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Chemistry in a Virtual World

Posted on May 26 by

Following Spring Break, in March 2020, the Emmanuel College Department of Chemistry and Physics joined the world in online education. We excelled in reaching and educating students in ways that many other institutions could not match. We had our challenges, but also successes and outcomes that were uniquely Emmanuel. What is chemistry like in a virtual world and what was the experience like for students, faculty, and staff? Faculty We panicked. Then we got to work flipping classrooms, recording video lectures, and moving labs online. (We also learned how to teach elementary school, managed child care, worked within 10 feet of a family member who’s on a loud phone call. Think about 20 first graders on a Zoom call together… pandemonium…) What did our classes look like? It was messy at first and we all struggled with learning Zoom, finding that great app to use as a whiteboard, or just finding a physical whiteboard to write on. We spent hours in front of our computers each day, alongside students, lecturing, working problems, holding office hours, teaching, and supporting-encouraging students....


Congratulations Chemistry Class of 2020!

Posted on May 19 by

The Department of Chemistry and Physics students, staff, and faculty gathered on Friday May 15th to honor and celebrate our graduating seniors. You have all been such an important part of our community for the past four years. You’ve done amazing work and we can’t wait to see what comes next. Congratulations...


Alumni Offer Advice to Seminar Students

Posted on Apr 22 by

The chemistry majors in Seminar this semester have been getting a taste of “what comes next” in their pursuit of chemistry and a career. A fantastic presentation by the Emmanuel College Career Center kicked things off and was followed in February by a series of presentations by the students on a career path of their choice, include high school chemistry teacher, research scientist, forensic chemist, pharmacist, and medical doctor. A big support for these students is knowing that we have recent alumni in each of these fields and more who are ready to help and offer advice. While the on-campus “Majors Meet Alumni Event” had to be cancelled, our alumni wouldn’t be turned away and many were able to join the class via Zoom to talk about their career paths and progress. A major theme that came out of the meeting was encouragement to students to continue to learn and explore after Emmanuel College – don’t be tied to one career track, but keep your eyes open to the possibilities in front of you. When something interesting comes before...


Department Donates to LMA Hospitals

Posted on Apr 21 by

We in the Department of Chemistry and Physics are proud to do our part in helping our neighbors in the Longwood Medical Area! It has been nearly month since supplies from our labs were picked up and delivered to LMA hospitals, including gloves, masks, scrubs, cleaning products and more. Thank you to our Boston-area hospitals (and healthcare organizations everywhere) for your...


Publication! Undergraduate students publish in analytical chemistry journal

Posted on Apr 4 by

Congratulations to undergraduate students, chemistry alumni, and Dr. Aren Gerdon on their recent article published in Analytica Chimica Acta titled “Selected DNA aptamers as hydroxyapatite affinity reagents“. This work has been a long time in the making beginning with the origins of our SELEX work by Hillary Butts and Samantha Watson. This particular selection was initiated by Jack Florek, carried forward by Emma Duffy, and validated by Stephanie Colon – all authors on the paper. It is a true “bright spot” (because of fluorescence) for undergraduate research at Emmanuel College. This work was supported by Emmanuel College and by the National Science Foundation, Division of Materials Research (DMR...


Chemistry Course Highlights

Posted on Mar 1 by

What do chemistry courses in the department look like this semester? Have you ever been interested in studying chemistry’s affect in nature and living organisms, or chemical reactions and inorganic compounds like salts and metals? Emmanuel chemistry students are pursing these ideas in two two upper level chemistry courses this semester. These courses include CHEM 3115 –  Intro to Toxicology taught by Dr. Michelle Watt and CHEM 2115 – Inorganic Chemistry with Dr. Nathan Lau. Toxicology, also known as “the science of poison”, is the study of the adverse effects of chemicals on living organisms. In this course, students can study the symptoms, mechanisms, treatments, and detection of selected human poisons. Students are introduced to the concepts of dose-response relationships, toxicity of metabolites, and chemical toxicology. Toxicology holds great value as it is used by forensic scientists who perform tests on tissue samples and bodily fluids to identify any chemical or drugs present in the human body. Working in a lab, a forensic toxicologist can perform tests on samples collected by pathologists during an autopsy or by crime scene...