Wednesday, October 29, 2008
The Department of Chemistry and the American Chemical Society Club at the University of West Georgia celebrated Mole Day with hours of exciting experiments and demonstrations.
Dr. John Hansen, associate professor of chemistry, began organizing the event with the chemistry club six years ago. It has been a growing success since then.
"When I first started the Mole Day celebration my intent was to attract local high school students to consider studying chemistry at UWG," said Hansen. "However, it has also become an opportunity for our students to learn good citizenship within the scientific community and develop professional responsibility. They are helping to foster scientific interests in younger students – our future scientists, who are a vital component to our national economic growth."
More than 500 students from local schools filled the Campus Center Ballroom to watch faculty and ACS Club members perform demonstrations to pique students’ interest in chemistry including a chemical reaction that incinerated a Jack O’lantern. Students from Carrollton, Temple and Alexander High Schools, Carrollton Elementary School and Lakeside School attended the event.
Mole Day is an unofficial holiday celebrated among chemists in North America on October 23, between 6:02 a.m. and 6:02 p.m., making the date 6:02, 10/23, in the American style of writing dates. The time and date are derived from the Avogadro constant, which is approximately 6.02×1023, defining the number of particles, atoms or molecules, in a mole, one of the seven base science units.
Mole Day originated in an article in The Science Teacher in the early 1980s. Inspired by this article, Maurice Oehler, a high school chemistry teacher from Wisconsin, founded the National Mole Day Foundation in 1991.
High schools around the United States and in Canada celebrate Mole Day as a way to inspire their students in chemistry, with various activities often related to chemistry or moles.
For more information about the opportunities through the Department of Chemistry, call 678-839-6550.