Recent News

12/2021- Feifei's paper has been accepted in Chem. Mater

8/2021 - Mike begins work at Highland Park High School

8/2021 - Amanda has joined the PhD program at IU

5/2021 - Matthew as joined the lab

4/2021 - Our new 4 point probe arrived!


Emerging Scientists Workshop

The Emerging Scientists Workshop (ESW) is a half day event organized by the Ciszek group at Loyola University Chicagoís Lake Shore Campus. The programís goal is to educate high school students about the roles and careers scientists hold upon graduation, especially those scientists with an advanced degree. Many students are familiar with lawyers, doctors, and policeman; few understand what a degree in science results in. ESW seeks to immerse students in a real research experiment (not demonstrations) and with cutting edge instrumentation so that they are better able to understand what a career in science would entail.

The event is held annually in the fall, and is organized via your high school or other educational organization. Interested students should have their high school science teacher contact us to arrange for a group to join. An invitation is required to attend.

The students arrive at ESW at 8:45 AM on Saturday. After registration, breakfast, and an introduction, the students spend an hour performing each experiment (three experiments total) which they have selected from a list of about ten. Each experiment covers a different sub-discipline of chemistry or biology. For example, those students interested in biochemistry can examine study how the individual atoms of proteins can be mapped (via X-rays) to understand how the structure influences function. Students then rotate to their second and third experiment. In each case, the research is real though some samples will be prepared in advance to expedite the experiment. In most cases, students will utilize high-end instrumentation, which they will have the opportunity to operate. All experiments will have short explanations as to how the chemistry and instrumentation behind the experiment works. Experiments are chosen to be of interest to a high school student. Typically there are three students in a group at any given time ensuring an interactive experience. Previous years experiments can be found here.

Since advice for students can also be useful, the introductory talk is dedicated to informing students about opportunities to engage in science at the collegiate level. This includes practical advice such as choosing (and approaching) a professor about research in their lab but also includes information about job opportunities after graduation. Additionally, most of Loyola's hosts will be able to answer questions after the experiments have completed. Finally, thanks to all of Loyola's hosts whom volunteer their Saturday morning to ensure a wonderful event.

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Other high school science programs at Loyola University Chicago


Individual Loyola professors in the department of Chemistry and Biochemistry often participate in the American Chemical Society's SEED program which brings high school students into a professor's lab for a summer of research. More information can be found at the ACS's site


Bill Kroll and the department of biology host the regional symposium for the JSHS, a forum for research done independently by highschool students and their teachers, often with outside advisors assisting on technical details. Winners of the regional symposium have the opportunity to present at the national symposium. Details can be found on the via the department of biology's site


Bill Kroll and the department of biology also participate in REAP, a program also providing summer research experiences for students (in this case the focus is biological). Biology's REAP site can be found here

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Science for Kids

One of my favorites for our children is the red cabbage experiment. Easy to do, very visual and interactive for kids. Requires a blender, a red cabbage, vinegar and baking soda. Good for about ages 3-9 (plus parent).

Its a bit simple, but very easy to do - using milk as an invisible ink is a cute way to get the little ones involved. Good for the younger side, 4-7.

Really cool "wow" moment for the 5-10 year olds - get a metal paperclip to float on the surface of water. Little ones like it too, its just harder for them to pour the water just right. Easy instructions here.

Ever wonder what's inside an egg? You can dissolve the shell using vinegar leaving the thin see-through membrane. Really neat to see inside an egg. Good for showing some basic chemistry too. Age: dunno; when do you trust your kids with raw eggs with no shells?

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