By: Stephanie Wright/Assistant Editor
Members of the Student Affiliates Chapter of the American Chemical Society will be operating the concessions stand at the High Plains Rock and Mineral Show February 16 and 17 to raise funds for their trip to the national convention in April.
SAACS is an organization open to interested chemistry majors or minors or related majors whose main purpose is to encourage college students and children in the study of chemistry and chemical-related fields.
Ten students and two faculty members will be attending the national convention that will be held April 6-10 in New Orleans and will host 33 different types of chemistry.
Stephanie Skiles, a senior from Glen Rose and President of SAACS at Wayland, is excited about the trip.
“I know it changed my life,” she said. “I was a premed major and now I’m a chemistry major because of the trip, so I highly appreciate and understand why the organization is here on campus.”
While at the convention five students will be presenting original research conducted here at Wayland that will all vary but pertain to the theme of water purification with a catalyst.
“It excites me to be able to tell people about my research.” Skiles said.
In the past SAACS has participated in numerous activities and community outreaches such as helping a Girl Scout troop earn their chemistry badges.
“Women can be in science. And that is something people don’t see very often. That was one of the biggest things that the girls took out of the day.” Skiles said. “Science is not just a man’s field that people tend to think it is.”
SAACS has also helped with the Plainview Area Homeschool Science Enhancement Program by bringing chemistry labs to homeschool students. They have also been active in “magic shows” involving basic chemistry demonstrations to peak kids’ interest in science.