Trenton ACS Local Section


The Alembic: February 2017

Posted by Crowe, Matthew on October 29, 2017 at 4:10 PM



Election Results

Thank you to all the members who voted in the Trenton ACS Election in the fall of 2016. The results were as follows:

Chair-Elect: Matt Crowe

Secretary: Danielle Guarracino

Treasurer: Danielle Jacobs

Councilor: Benny Chan


Upcoming Events

The Chemical Consultants Network (CCN) is an active networking group of consultants in the chemical and pharmaceutical industries. The CCN will be holding a meeting on March 8th, starting at 4:30 PM at Avenue Kitchen in Villanova, Pennsylvania. The Chair of the ACS Philadelphia Section, Deborah Cook, will be speaking about the ACS Philadelphia Section, and Keith Wing, the Chair-Elect of CCN, will speak about what CCN can do for you. For more information about this event and to register, please visit the attached website.


Opportunity for Chemistry Educators

The Trenton Section of the ACS is proud to be offering partial support for membership into the American Association of Chemistry Teachers (!

The new organization gives support and ideas on teaching modules in chemistry, webinars on teaching and learning, and videos for students. If you sign up through TrACS, we will offer a 50% support for AACT membership dues ($25 for the $50 membership). Teachers who sign up will automatically become associate members of the Trenton Local Section and will receive our newsletter, news of local events, and announcements for support opportunities.

Our goal is to create a local community of high school teachers to share ideas and concerns with the college level instructors in the area. We have a limited number of these memberships and interested teachers should contact the current chair, Dr. Abby O’Connor,, for additional information.


Student Scholarship Information

ACS Trenton Local Section Scholarship Award 2017

The Trenton Section of the American Chemical Society is sponsoring up to two High School Scholarships ($1,500 max for each scholarship). There is the potential for a second year renewal depending on funds, required continued pursuit of a degree in chemistry and maintaining good grades. Graduating students at public or private high schools, who plan to major in chemistry, biochemistry, chemical engineering, or chemical technology at a two or four-year college, qualify for these scholarships.

The Section also offers the Roeser Memorial Scholarship award for $2000, which is potentially renewable for one additional year. The application requirements are the same as described above with the following two restrictions: (1) the student must be graduating from a public high school and (2) must be planning, as a senior in high school, a career in pure or applied chemistry. An additional paragraph in the application describing pure or applied chemistry is also required (*see details below).

We are looking for high school seniors who pursue undergraduate degrees in chemistry, chemical engineering, biochemistry, or chemical technology that plan to pursue a career in the chemical sciences or engineering. Typically, students pursuing degrees to become a nurse, medical doctor, physician assistant, pharmacist, physical therapist or other health professional career do not qualify; however, health science/engineering careers that extensively use chemistry, chemical technology, or chemical engineering and will involve research or manufacturing rather than treating patients may qualify at the discretion of the selection committee. Please note that while all eligible applicants are encouraged to apply, preference will be given to candidates whose high school is located within the Trenton ACS Local Section. You can determine which ACS Local Section your high school is located in by entering your high school’s Zip/Postal Code and State at the following webpage:

To qualify for consideration for either scholarship, the student must submit to the scholarship committee the following items:

1. A letter with the following subheadings:

A. Background: Describe your intent to apply, summarize your GPA and SAT scores, extracurricular

activities, and impressions of your high school chemistry course(s)

B. College Plans: Describe why you chose your college and your major

C. Career Plans: Describe your career plans after college and address what you plan to do with your career

*In order to be considered for the Roeser Memorial Scholarship, the applicant must include an additional paragraph in section C which address the following two areas: 1) A description of what is pure or applied chemistry and 2) An explanation of why a career in this area interests them

2. An official transcript of high school grades including chemistry courses.

3. An official report of the applicant’s SAT and Chemistry Achievement Test scores administered by the Educational Testing Service. The Trenton Section of the American Chemical Society has been assigned the code 0570 by ETS for use by students requesting that their scores be reported to us. If the scores have been officially entered on the school transcripts, then we do not need a separate report from ETS.

4. The student’s home phone number and e-mail address.

5. A letter of recommendation from their high school chemistry teacher. Please include the teacher’s home phone number and e-mail so we can contact them, if clarification is needed. This letter should be sent separately as a PDF file to on school letterhead or from an official school email account. The letter must be received by 5:00 pm Friday, March 31, 2017. The subject line of the email should be: Applicant name, TrACS Scholarship Application

All of the applicant’s materials should be sent as a SINGLE PDF file for sections 1-4 to and also must be received by 5:00 pm Friday, March 31, 2017. The subject line of the email should be: Applicant name, TrACS Scholarship Application

If you cannot submit a PDF file, a hardcopy may be sent to the address listed below and postmarked by the same deadline. An email should also be sent to so we know to expect your mailed application. The subject line of the email should be: Applicant name, TrACS Scholarship Application

Mailing address for hardcopy application:

Joseph Baker

Department of Chemistry

The College of New Jersey

PO Box 7718

Ewing, NJ 08628

Awards are presented to the winners at our May Awards Dinner (date to be determined). The awardee and their nominating teacher are invited as Trenton ACS guests. Parents and other guests are welcome at their own expense (typically ~$25/person).

Students receiving the scholarship will be expected to perform the following duties:

1. At their institution of matriculation, the scholar must participate in their campus’ chemistry club (usually a student affiliates club of the American Chemical Society). If none exists, service to another science-based club may be substituted.

2. At the end of the academic year, provide a written report that includes their activities with the campus club during the academic year, an unofficial copy of their transcripts showing their performance in their major, and a statement that the scholar will remain a chemistry, chemical engineering, or chemical technology major.

The local section will invite 2017 scholarship winners to attend the Awards Dinner in 2018 to share their experiences at their new institution.


The Philadelphia Section STLE scholarship

The Philadelphia Section of the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers (STLE) is soliciting scholarship applications for scholarship awards for the 2017-18 academic year. The Section awards scholarships to deserving undergraduate and graduate students in New Jersey, Eastern Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland. Eligible students are sophomores or above pursuing a Bachelors or Graduate degree in the Physical Sciences, Engineering, Tribology, Math or similar studies with a GPA of 3.0 or above. Preference will be given to those studying or working in a field related to Lubrication Science. The application deadline is May 31, 2017.

The Section has awarded a total of $18,000 tpo tewn students over the last two academic years. To download the application and learn more about past winners and the Philadelphia STLE, visit us at

or contact Bill Tuszynski at


Updates from the Student Affiliates

The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) Student Chemists Association (SCA) Fall 2016 and Planned Spring 2017 Activities

By Katie Fomchenko, SCA President

The TCNJ Student Chemists Association (SCA) has had a very successful Fall 2016 semester, and is looking forward to a great Spring 2017 semester! Last semester, SCA hosted numerous events, as well as hosting some fundraisers. Chapter development events included our first meeting pizza party, freshmen “brown bag lunch” events, a green chemistry scavenger hunt, a Chemistry Thanksgiving potluck dinner, and a Cards Against Humanity Stressbuster event, where members played a rousing game of Cards against Humanity to take their minds off of upcoming exams and finals. The freshmen brown bag lunches each had a theme relating to college life or professional development, such as a “speed dating session” for research labs in the department. These events included the green chemistry scavenger hunt in order to promote fun, respect for sustainable chemistry practices, and a sense of direction around the chemistry building. Service events included sending volunteers to Chemistry Department Open Houses and the North NJ Local Section’s National Chemistry Week event “Chem Expo” at Liberty Science Center, where volunteers performed a fingerprinting demonstration in accordance with NCW’s theme of solving mysteries through chemistry. For fundraising events, SCA held a goggle sale and sold TCNJ chemistry themed apparel featuring an excellent chemistry pun. The major event of the semester was SCA’s Inter-Chapter Relations event, supported by a grant from the ACS, at the Crayola Experience Center in Easton PA. Chapter members from Rider University, TCNJ, and Lafayette College enjoyed a day of making new friends, embracing their inner child, and learning about the science behind Crayola products. Attendees to this event were also able to bond over their love of bacon and experience local culture, as this event coincidentally coincided with Easton’s “Bacon Fest,” a street festival celebrating the deliciousness of bacon.

In the Spring 2017 semester, SCA is planning a number of events. On 2/21, SCA will be hosting the ACS PIB event on the chemistry of sports. On 2/27, SCA will be participating in the TCNJ Week of Science by performing a green chemistry demo on biodegradable packing peanuts. Chapter members will also be volunteering at science fairs in the local area to perform chemistry demonstrations for the students and judge their projects at Antheil Elementary School on 2/16 and Timberlane Middle School on 2/25. The much anticipated Chemistry Semiformal, “Chemiformal,” will be held on 3/4 and include food, fun, and a DJ. Other events planned include a trip to the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia, a climate change lecture from Dr. Aucott during Earth Week, a laser tag or paintballing outing, and sending members to participate in the Philadelphia Younger Chemists Committee poster session. We are looking forward to some great events this semester!

Rider University’s Student Affiliate of the American Chemical Society (SAACS) Fall 2016 Activities

By Anthony Borkowski and John Gulliver, SAACS Co-Presidents

Rider SAACS is beginning this year by welcoming Joshua Tamuzza, Caroline Nguyen, and Jonnathan Marin to the officers board to fill the roles of Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary once the current officers graduate. They will be working hands-on with their predecessors to learn the duties of their roles and to get an idea of the steps that need to be taken in order to host successful events. We at SAACS are very excited to have them take on their new roles and we wish them the best of luck in this learning process.

This semester our newest officers will be forged by fire as SAACS undertakes its most ambitious and complex project to date; in response to the current political climate, SAACS will be organizing a trip to Washington D.C. so that Rider students and faculty can participate in the March for Science on April 22nd. Like many others across the nation, we at Rider University and SAACS are concerned about how common the politicizing of science has become over the last several years. We are of the opinion that fact-based, verifiable science is not a partisan issue nor is it a weapon to drive agendas or win arguments. To paraphrase Carl Sagan, science is simply the way in which the cosmos learns about itself. By learning about the cosmos, be it micro or macro, we can make the Earth a better place to live but to do so we must defend the integrity of the scientific method. We cannot allow politicians to pick and choose which facts to support or deny, we cannot allow gag orders to silence publicly funded agencies from announcing the findings of their research, and we cannot continue to stand silent as scientific research is misrepresented by those without the proper qualifications to interpret or communicate such results.

SAACS has already begun partnering with other science-based organizations at Rider to ensure that as many concerned students as possible can attend the march in Washington D.C.. The local chapter of the Chemistry Honors Society at Rider (GSE), Science Learning Community, the Rider Eco Reps, and the Science and Faith club have all begun to spread the news to their members about the march and we are currently discussing several different ways we can secure the funding to transport those students and faculty that will be marching. SAACS is also currently planning to hold several info sessions to explain the goals of the march itself to the Rider student body and to invite all students to join us. Currently one of our faculty members, Dr David Laviska, has volunteered to serve as our keynote speaker at our info sessions and, in addition, we are welcoming students and others to speak briefly about the scientific issues they are passionate about that are being poorly represented in the media.

Turning to lighter topics, this semester SAACS will be holding more events and programs aimed at showing the fun side of science and events were all students are welcome to have fun. Starting with our upcoming ACS Program in a Box event on February 21st, the Chemistry of Sports, SAACS will be exploring how chemistry plays a vital role in developing new materials used in helmets and uniforms that allow professional athletes to run faster, hit harder, and receive fewer injuries. In addition, the webinar will explore how analytical chemists are working constantly to protect the integrity of professional sports by developing new testing methods for performance enhancing substances.

Our roster of fun science events will also increase with the addition of two new events that SAACS will be debuting this year; a lab coat beauty contest and the crowning of Riders very own scientific champion. Our lab coat beauty contests will give all students the chance to show off their flair for style as they will be challenged to take a basic white lab coat and turn it into a stunning work of art that reflects their passions and interests. Students are free to decorate the coats in any way they see fit, but all lab coats must be appropriate to wear within a laboratory; beyond expressing a sense of style, the coat must still serve its basic function of protecting the wearer. And in the quest to find a champion of science, Rider students will break into teams of four to test their skills in chemistry, biology, psychology, physics, and geology. Once a winning team has been declared, the members of that team will compete against one another to become the first ever recipient of the Rider University Molecularweight Championship belt. Beyond bragging rights, students in each event will be competing for gift cards, prizes, and to be the first to receive the biggest and best burgers at our annual spring barbeque.

For the benefit of students still undecided about career paths, SAACS will be aiding the Office of University Advancement at Rider in hosting a series of “brown bag lunch” programs aimed at giving chemistry alumni the opportunity to pass on helpful tips and for answering questions from underclassmen. These informal networking events will be held on March 30th and April 20th and SAACS will aid in this fantastic opportunity by promoting the event through our email newsletters, posting flyers, and by providing refreshments.

This semester is shaping up to be an exciting time for our organization. From taking on new challenges by organizing a means to peacefully protest in our nation’s capital, to developing new events with mass appeal, organizing our returning spring bbq, and supporting underclassmen SAACS will be pushing past our previous limits in the most exciting of ways. And it is the deepest wishes of the current club officers that we can set the bar high for our replacements, because the higher we set that bar the higher they will soar when they surpass it.


Trenton ACS Councilors to Attend National ACS Meeting in San Francisco

The Spring 2017 National Meeting of the American Chemical Society will be held in San Francisco, CA, on April 2-6. Trenton ACS Councilors Benny Chan and Matt Crowe will attend the conference to represent our local section. Both councilors will attend the MARM Caucus and the National ACS Council meeting, at which they will learn about, discuss, and vote on issues relevant to the ACS. Councilors Chan and Crowe are also involved with committees that represent aspects of chemistry about which they are passionate. Benny will participate in activities related to the Committee on Minority Affairs, and Matt will participate in activities relevant to the Committee on Chemical Safety.

To share your thoughts on how you would like your local section represented, please reach out to your Councilors. See the Officers page on the Trenton ACS website ( for Councilor contact information.


Other Local Sections and Seminars

Nearby ACS sections include the Princeton Section, the North Jersey Section, and the Philadelphia Section. All have diverse and interesting monthly speakers. Their speaker schedules and home pages are located online at the following sites:

Princeton Section of the ACS

Philadelphia Section of the ACS

North Jersey Section of the ACS


To Unsubscribe from The Alembic

The Alembic is the newsletter of the Trenton Section of the American Chemical Society and is sent to all 850 section members. Current regulations require that all electronic newsletters of this type include a link that allows the user to Unsubscribe. The Alembic is sent to the email address on record with the ACS.

To change the address or unsubscribe, go to

As the address list is updated by National Headquarters from time to time, and as the local section is operated by volunteers, you may be added to the email list after you unsubscribe. I regret any inconvenience.

Trenton Section

American Chemical Society

PO Box 55633

Trenton, NJ 08638

Serving Central NJ for

over 50 Years

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