Friday, September 08, 2006

American Chemical Society National Meeting San Francisco

As an American Chemical Society Councilor I am able to attend both National Meetings of the American Chemical Society. The fall meeting this year is held in San Francisco from September 8 to 14. Since I do not fly I went to the meeting via Amtrak from Trenton NJ to San Francisco.

Society Committee on Education (SOC ED) Meeting

Since I am a member of the Society Committee on Education(SocED) I had plenty of things to do on the train since we had a lot of items on the agenda for this meeting. Soc ED meets in sub committee on September 7th. There are two subcommittee's one for K-12 and one for Higher Education. I am a member of the K-12 subcommittee because of my year's of working with Pre-College teachers as the New Jersey Statewide Systemic Initiative Regional Director.
Here are some of the items that came up at this meeting.
1. They are thinking about the formation of a high school chemistry teacher affiliate group. I must emphasize thinking about. Nothing is etched in stone. They decided at this meeting to determine if there is a need for this organization and also to find out what organization already exist. For example the North Jersey Section has an on going Teacher Affiliate group which is very active. This was started by the teachers and continues to be run by the teachers. Many teachers are full members of the ACS and have become chair's of the Section or Secretary. Currently Diane Krone is the Chair -elect of the NJACS and BettyAnne Howson is the secretary. Both are high school teachers.
2. High School Chemistry Clubs. This is a pilot program which was started last academic year and there were 15 active clubs nationwide. There were no clubs in New Jersey, but we would like to have one established in New Jersey especially in the urban school districts. Teachers can sign up to establish High School chemistry clubs.
3. We heard from James Brown of the Office of Legislative Affairs (OLGA). The good news is that funding for science education has a high priority in congress after the war. Mr Brown urged ACS members to become members of the Legislative Action Network (LAN). Congress does listen to the members so when an alert comes out members should take action. There should also be a local section legislative action committee and North Jersey Section has such a committee. Members are urged to join.
4. ACS is looking for a new director of education due to the retirement of Sylvia Ware. A search was undertaken which only yielded two names and one dropped out. A new search was initiated and there are now more names to consider. In order to determine the perception of ACS education. This report was reviewed by the committee. The bottom line is that the ACS has to do a better job of communication because some things perceived as missing in programs are there but it is hard to find them on the web. The ACS is working on improving the web so that improvements should be seen in the near future.
5. The Committee on Professional Training is preparing a booklet on How to Prepare for Graduate School. It will be a web based booklet which students can download as a pdf form. It will be posted on the CPT website\cpt\index.html.

More later. This was a long meeting.

Jeannette Brown


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