Greater Houston Section

  • 08 Aug 2021 11:48 PM | Dawn Friesen (Administrator)

    The 2021 Project Seed Virtual Summer Camp was a five-week online program that aimed to strengthen students professionally while preparing them for in-person research either next summer as part of Project SEED, or in future research opportunities.

    More than 373 students participated in and attended webinars, virtual panels, and online discussions, and completed independent assignments with the guidance and mentorship of their Cabin Leaders and Camp Managers while networking with their fellow campers.  All of these students except twenty eight met June 28 – July 30, 2021, via synchronous and asynchronous meetings, small group, and social/networking sessions. Participants were also required to attend all sessions within the camp and national itinerary while completing all required assignments and activities, which included a live presentation of a research project of their choice. The students did an awesome job featuring awesome presentation skills. The other 28 students participated in an inaugural Virtual Research Pilot program.

    Project SEED continues as a program of the Education Division, sponsored by the American Chemical Society and a number of corporate and individual donors.  This year more than 35 students received scholarships for the 2021 – 2022 academic years. ACS continues to commit to encouraging excellence in education and values diversity, inclusion, and respect.  Visit for more information and send questions to

    By the end of the camp, the participants (Project Seed Interns) should be able to:

    • Demonstrate competency in wet lab safety techniques, learn and demonstrate ethical discretion in crediting contributing authors and resources, and make connections between the over-arching goals of research projects with the smaller experiments that support them. 
    • Learn and practice professional communication techniques and improve their personal statement and resume writing abilities.
    • Compare professional career paths by means of exposure to academic, industrial, government and entrepreneurial via career panels and activities using ACS career resources.

    The 2021 Project Seed Virtual Summer Program was divided into several camps while Dr. Antoine Carty and Carolyn Burnley served as managers for Camp Alpha which consisted of three Cabins:

    1) Hydrogen - Cabin Leaders: Monica Rivas, a High School Chemistry Teacher of nine years and Feven Minaleshewa, a student majoring in Biology at Augustana University;

    2) Lithium - Cabin Leaders: Jonathan Castro, a Chemical Engineering student at UTSA and Noella Masengesho, a Chemistry student at Iowa State and last but not least;

    3) Helium - Cabin Leaders: Kaleb Mathieu, a High School Chemistry Teacher and an Educational Psychology PhD student at Texas A&M – Commerce and Jason Gladstone, a Biochemistry student at Northeastern University (Pre-Med).

    This summer two Greater Houston members served as Camp Alpha speakers: Dr. JanElsa Carty and Dr. Javoris Hollingsworth.

  • 08 Aug 2021 6:26 PM | ACS GHS (Administrator)

    Congratulations to Greater Houston Section members Dr. B. Montgomery Pettitt and Dr. Amber Hinkle!

    Monte Pettit was recently named a 2021 ACS Fellow for his outstanding achievements in and contributions to science, the profession, and the Society.

    Amber Hinkle is the recipient of the 2022 Award for Volunteer Service to the American Chemical Society recognizing individuals who exemplify the spirit of volunteerism and have contributed significantly to ACS’s goals and objectives.

  • 06 Aug 2021 6:27 PM | ACS GHS (Administrator)

    Photo Credit: David Horwitz

    Team USA students (L to R): Yitian Zhu (Gold), Nikhil Seshadri (Silver), Kien Phuong (Silver), Qiyang Zhou (Gold)

    Congratulations to Yitian Zhu from Seven Lakes High School in Katy, TX on her gold medal, and to the rest of Team USA on their impressive performance at the 53rd International Chemistry Olympiad competition. Learn more about the competition and the team's experiences here.
  • 17 Jul 2021 5:09 PM | Dawn Friesen (Administrator)

    Did you miss our June seminars? We've got you covered!

    Hear 2021 ACS President Dr. H. N. Cheng's thoughts on the future of chemistry in his talk on New Frontiers, Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

    If you're looking for something to brighten your summer, Dr. Corina Rogge from the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston spoke to us about The Dating Game: A New Diagnostic Marker for Dating and Provenancing of Titanium White Pigments

    Check out the ACS Greater Houston Section YouTube channel for these and other videos!
  • 06 Jul 2021 5:06 PM | Dawn Friesen (Administrator)

    It is summer time, so make sure to remember sun-protection! I have a high refractive index and serve as a pigment. What compound am I?

    Answer: It's titanium dioxide!


  • 09 Jun 2021 5:16 PM | Dawn Friesen (Administrator)

    Congratulations to Yitian Zhu of Seven Lakes High School in Katy, TX for being named to the US Chemistry Olympiad team! Yitian joins three other team members and two alternate team members from around the US who will participate in the 2021 International Chemistry Olympiad, hosted remotely by Japan from July 25 - August 2, 2021.

    See the full team announcement and read more about the International Chemistry Olympiad experience at C&EN

  • 08 Jun 2021 11:53 PM | ACS GHS (Administrator)

    Summer time means it's time to start smoking and grilling foods. I help provide that nice aroma for wood and charcoal smoke. Propane is on its own. Hungry yet?  What compound am I?

    Answer:  It's syringol!


  • 28 May 2021 11:38 PM | ACS GHS (Administrator)

    Merging Olefins and Acrylates in Polymer Synthesis - Benefits and Challenges

    The ACS-GHS was proud to host Dr. Eva Harth as our first seminar speaker of 2021 on May 27th. Dr. Harth is Director of the Welch Center of Excellence in Polymer Chemistry at the University of Houston, and spoke to attendees about the development of a single catalyst platform that can build polyolefin-polyacrylate block copolymers. The catalysts used by her group can move from metal insertion olefin polymerization to radical-mediated acrylate polymerization with the flip of a (light) switch! The resulting copolymers have unique mechanical properties with applications in a range of commercial products. Thanks to Dr. Harth for enthusiastically sharing her work with us, and to all our seminar attendees.

  • 21 May 2021 6:58 PM | ACS GHS (Administrator)

    2021 Student Awards Program

    The ACS-GHS 2021 Student Awards were presented on May 20th. Opening the proceedings was Dawn Friesen, 2021 ACS-GHS Chair, who welcomed the guests and managed the online Zoom event.

    The Science and Engineering Fair (SEFH) Chemistry Category winners in both the Senior and Junior Divisions were on hand to present their excellent projects. Larry Dennis, ECH Liaison, recognized the teachers and schools while presenting the student awards in each category. Congratulations to all the SEFH Students on their excellent achievement in the category of Chemistry!

    SEFH Junior Division First Place Winner

    Sophia Perone and teacher, Janice Horton

    SEFH Senior Division First Place Winner

    Zhi-Wei “Steven” Zeng and mentor, Ying Feng

    Chemistry Olympiad

    Students participating in the ACS-GHS Chemistry Olympiad were recognized for their performance and achievements. The U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad (USNCO) is a multi-tiered chemistry competition in 3 stages. The Local Chemistry Olympiad Competition is open to all high school students. ACS Local Sections choose nominees for the national exam. The nominated students can participate in the National Chemistry Olympiad Competition, which involves three parts administered to more than 1,000 students nationwide.

    Top performing student(s) at each school were given a prize by the ACS-GHS beside the national competition qualifiers. This year, 221 students from 26 schools joined in the local competition.

    Only the 20 top scoring students from the National Exam qualify for the two-week Study Camp to undergo rigorous training. Based on their performance, four students are chosen to represent the U.S. at the International Chemistry Olympiad. ACS-GHS had two National Study Camp Qualifiers, Phoenix Wu and Yitian Zhu, both from Seven Lakes High School.

    Dr. Ding-Shyue (Jerry) Yang, Chemistry Olympiad Coordinator for the Greater Houston Section, presented the awards. Also acknowledged were the teachers’ efforts to make this event possible and successful.

    Many thanks to Dawn Friesen, Roxie Allen, Jerry Yang, Lisa Houston and Kerry Spilker for organizing the event. The YouTube link to the ACS-GHS Student Awards recording can be found at:

  • 18 May 2021 7:20 PM | Dawn Friesen (Administrator)

    I am a hydrocarbon in which every carbon atom is equally bonded, or not bonded, to every other carbon. Look at my singlet 1H NMR. But I don't like keeping permanent. What compound am I?

    Answer:  It's bullvalene!


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