254th ACS National Meeting & Exposition

August 20-24, 2017 - Washington, DC



We have made it safely to DC and are set in our cozy Airbnb. We had a chance to register and explore the convention center, where the conference will be held. After dinner, Barrett and I have practiced setting up and presenting our talks in the Speaker Preparation rooms, and we all practiced presenting our posters and finalized our conference schedules. We were very excited for the conference to begin! 

- Deondre

The first day!

The first day of the conference was overall very engaging. In the morning we attended talks, we spread ourselves across a wide variety of subjects. With conviction and excitement, Barrett and I shared our research in our back-to-back oral presentations. Afterwards, we attended a key note lecture focused on Chemistry's Impact on the global economy, and we learned how our lab work transcends academia and effects the world. We also attended a Bioinorganic poster session and actually saw one of our TBIC friends from the Burgmayer lab before exploring other posters. Tomorrow will be another big day as we all give poster presentations!

- Deondre

Day 2

Day two of ACS was quite good! We all went to a variety of different talks in the morning, ranging from biological studies to inorganic topics and new synchrotron developments. We met with Brian from Ursinus College and ran into Ian. Our poster presentations went very well. We managed to watch the eclipse, and it was very neat. 

Linda and Allan 

Barrett and Deondre

During the evening poster session, we met Dick Sheardy who has worked on GQs in Texas and has been good friends with Brad Chaires, one of our collaborators from University of Louisville. He's a nice guy! Looking forward to some more good talks tomorrow, including one by Amy Rosenzweig (Northwestern University) and another by Professor Graves (Swarthmore College).

- Barrett

Day 3

Today was as busy as the previous two days. Similar to the last two days, each of us tended to go our own way to talks that interested us personally, and then come back together and share the highlights at meal times or at poster sessions. For myself, I went to a number of crystallography/enzymatic structure/bioinorganic talks today that were quite interesting. There's an entire session called "the many colors of copper" which was very good. Amy Rosenzweig presented in that session, and afterwards we (Deondre, Brian, and myself) got to chat to her briefly. She accepted our offer to learn more about our research when she visits Swarthmore next semester for the Colloquim series, which was very exciting! Professor Graves gave a very nice talk in the afternoon which many of us were able to attend, including his students and Brian as well. One of the most surprising talks of the day came in the later afternoon, when Linda and I learned about David Chenoweth's work on redesigning collagen to be stronger by engineering in new H-bonds via mutation (and nonchalantly producing a 1.13 Å collagen-mutant structure along the way...). 

Linda and I also visited the expo today, where we learned some more about chem101. They seem to have a smooth interface and quite a bit of content from what we briefly saw, targeted at General Chemistry 1 and 2. They're currently trying to replace clickers in lecture, reproducing the multiple choice functionality and adding the ability for users to draw structures and such as a new type of question and response. They're looking to expand into homework assignments as well, though they're not planning on adding other chemistry courses. They currently charge $5 per student account for the app/service, though they expect that to rise somewhat as they add in the new homework features.

This evening was several poster sessions (including Rares, Audra, and Mackinsey from Graves lab). We all then headed out to walk around the city a little, enjoyed some ice cream, and stopped by the white house. Back to the convention center early tomorrow for one of the few GQ talks! 

- Barrett