Queensborough Wins Awards at the National Chemistry Week Celebration

Published: October 25, 2019

On Sunday, October 20th, QCC’s Chemistry Department faculty and students participated in the National Chemistry Week Celebration at the New York Hall of Science. This event is organized by the New York Section of the American Chemical Society and occurs annually during the month October. It provides an excellent opportunity to promote the value of chemistry to the public and encourage children of all ages to become interested in science. Participants plan activities and perform demonstrations related to Chemistry. 2019 is a particularly special year since it marks the 150th anniversary of the Mendeleev Periodic Table. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has designated 2019 as the “International Year of the Periodic Table.” The Periodic Table is not only one of the most iconic images in the field of Chemistry, but a vital tool in analyzing chemical reactions. It arranges all of the elements by atomic number and electron configuration.

Group photo students

Queensborough chemistry faculty were heavily involved in the planning and construction of a giant 3D Periodic Table that was unveiled at the New York Hall of Science on October 18th to commemorate the International Year of the Periodic Table. The structure is composed of 118 individual element panels that were designed by various participants, including students (elementary to college-level), as well as scientists in both the public and private sectors.
The theme of this year’s National Chemistry Week Celebration was, “Marvelous Metals.” In accordance with the theme, our table had several activities and demonstrations involving different metals. We challenged our visitors to correctly classify elements as non-metals and metals, we asked them to determine which materials would be attracted to magnets while teaching them about magnetism and ferromagnetic materials, we exposed various metals to hydrochloric acid to demonstrate reduction-oxidation reactions and the metal activity series, as well as performed a chemiluminescent (light-producing) reaction to identify iron in solutions. Additionally, chromatography was employed to separate various dyes in markers, and visitors were shown how a vegetable extract could be used to determine the pH of various household items. Each of our visitors, including over 100 children, received some chocolate and candy. Queensborough won two awards at the National Chemistry Week Celebration – “Overachiever Award for Most Demonstrations” and “Largest Group Award!”

Studnets serving cake

The QCC activity was co-organized by: Drs. Paul Sideris, Tirandai Hemraj-Benny, Sharon Lall-Ramnarine, and Paris Svoronos. Faculty volunteers included Drs. David Sarno and Kevin Kolack. Student volunteers, who performed the demonstrations and explained the science behind them, included: Zachary Avrutis, Harpreet Singh, Nadda Ali, Yuxuan Wang, Jackie Chen, Priscilla Giuliante, Saleh Jaser, Oneiliyah Whyte, Elana Abdurakhmanov, Feruza Turobova, Heesoo Cho, Sabrina Leonard, Albert Fana, Alec Smalley, Amirabbas Maghsoudi, Aneeka Rahman, Arnab Sharma, Aston Simpson, Biling Chen, Charles Wong, David Zbierajewski, Dennis Chen, Gabriel Rodriguez, Jernaire Mitchell, Kevin Chen, Keyana Anderson, Kim Williams, Kinza Rehman, Melanie Landazuri, Muhabbat Ahmedova, Nashelle Bisono, Neetu Singh, Nihal ud Din, Pamela Tabaquin, Samira Hasanova, Sophia How, Stephanie Landazuri, Stephanie Mendez, Sterna Leboeuf, Tasheka Plummer, Ying Ying Zhang, Tea Van, and Lakshita Puri. 
Our student and faculty volunteers wore Queensborough Community College t-shirts with pride throughout the event. All the volunteers were provided pizza for lunch through the generous support of QCC student clubs. This event was co-sponsored by QCC’s Science Research Alliance, Chemistry Club, Student Affiliates of the American Chemical Society, Women in Science, Biology Club, CSTEP Club, Haitian Club, STEM Research Club, STEM Academy, Environmental Sustainability Club and PTK Honor Society. We are very grateful for the support we received and hope you will join us next year as we continue to be part of this wonderful event!

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Contact:  Alice Doyle

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