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College News

Chemistry Students and Faculty Present at National Meeting


A group of faculty and students presented their work at the Northeast Regional American Chemical Society (NERM-ACS) meeting held in Rochester from September 30-October 3.

Dr. Nahyr Rovira-Figueroa’s presentation entitled, “Using External Representations as a Research Tool,” was an interactive workshop that investigated the uses of student-generated concept maps and drawings as research tools.

Dr. Kristina Lantzky presented, “POGIL Workshop in Chemistry,” which focused on the student-centered approach to teaching science that has shown great effectiveness in helping students learn.

“Using Nano-Outreach Activities to Spark Interest in STEM,” presented by Dr. Kermin Martinez-Hernandez, was an interactive workshop that showed a series of different nanotechnology and materials science engineering outreach activities that could be used to teach students.

Drs. Kimberly Chichester, Kristina Lantzky, and Irene Kimaru presented their work resulting from a partnership with Fisher juniors and seniors and high school students they were mentoring.  The students tested the water in Buckland Creek in Brighton for baseline levels of analytes and overall water quality to determine the effects of urbanization. The high school students learned how to properly sample and how to store samples after collection prior to analysis. In addition, the students reported their findings to an environmental agency and researched the accepted levels for each of the analytes in a water source.

Students Zachary VanAernum, Kacie Rich, and Nicole Gombert presented their poster, “Validation of a Raman Spectroscopy Method for Quantitative Analysis of Pharmaceutical Compounds.”  Pharmacists currently do not have a fast, accurate, or cost-effective method of ensuring accuracy of their compounded formulations. Without proper analysis, human error can result in dangerous and life-threatening mistakes in products. Current research at Fisher has proposed using Raman spectroscopy to address this issue due to its cost and ease of sample preparation. They developed a Raman spectroscopy method and obtained data for acetaminophen slurries, which were prepared by Wegmans School of Pharmacy students. In order to validate the findings from the Raman spectroscopy data, a second quantitative method was developed. Pharmacy and Chemistry faculty members Dr. Fang Zhao, Dr. Irene Kimaru, and Dr. Kimberly Chichester worked with the students on this project.

Benjamin Haywood presented his poster, “Analysis of Concentrations of the Clopyralid in Compost Piles in Pittsford and Perinton,” which analyzed composting and new research that shows that compost and mulches may contain residues of herbicides such as Clopyralid from treated plants and grass clippings. He used public compost piles from the towns of Pittsford and Perinton to determine using a modified version of a previously published method.

The American Chemical Society (ACS) is the world’s largest scientific society, and one of the world’s leading sources of authoritative scientific information.

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