SHC chemistry club again honored by The American Chemical Society

Fri, 12/02/2011 - 10:30am

MOBILE, Ala. – The Spring Hill College chemistry club has been recognized by the American Chemical Society for commendable achievements in 2010–2011.

This is the second time in the past five years that the club has received such an award and is ranked in the top 10 percent nationwide of the 360 student chapters who were considered for achievement awards.

“At the end of the year, we prepare a report of our activities and send it to ACS, where judges compares what we’ve done in relation to other college and university chemistry clubs,” said Dr. Lesli Bordas, associate professor of chemistry and the club’s advisor.

The SHC chemistry club hosts several events on campus each year to promote awareness and participation from the Spring Hill community including National Chemistry Week held annually in October that features various chemistry demonstrations and fun events, a chili cook-off, and a crawfish boil.

“One major event that we’ve done during National Chemistry Week is Pennies for PUR,” said Bordas. “Pennies for PUR, a program endorsed by the ACS, raises funds to purify and distribute clean drinking water to developing countries. This year the club raised enough money to purify more than 6,000 gallons of water.”

All SHC chemistry majors are involved with the annual Science Olympiad, a hands-on workshop and competitive tournament held on Spring Hill’s campus every February for elementary, middle school and high school math and science students.

The chemistry students also have “adopted” an eighth-grade physical science class at Pillans Middle School in Mobile, hoping to encourage an enthusiasm for studying science.

The Partners in Science program includes 11 SHC students who visit the class once a month on Friday afternoons and conduct laboratory activities. The eighth-grade students are split into groups of two to three that allows the college students to better develop relationships with the youngsters and advise them not only about the study of science but also the importance of their pursuit of a college education.

The Partners in Science program was funded by a Community Interactions Grant from the ACS.