Educating environmentally responsible citizens and scientists through green, environmental chemistry

Liz U. Gron, M. Warfield Teague, and Shelly Bradley. Department of Chemistry, Hendrix College, 1600 Washington Avenue, Conway, AR 72032

Power Point Presentation (PDF)

ABSTRACT: At Hendrix College, we are developing green instrumental methods that are being used by introductory chemistry students. These investigations are designed to educate environmentally aware citizens and scientists in an environmentally friendly manner. Instrumental techniques provide important replacement options for classic environmental analyses that, ironically, create wastes that are antithetical to caring for the environment. Our Green Soil & Water Analysis at Toad Suck (Green-SWAT) laboratory program is being developed to fill a major void in national chemistry curricula by providing accessible environmental experiments for introductory chemistry students. We use instrumentation that is both operationally and intellectually accessible to the students without relying on extensive background material outside their limited expertise. Additionally, these experiments provide an opportunity for introductory students to participate in environmental chemistry without waiting for upper level courses that require several years of science in order to participate. In this program, the introductory chemistry students hone their analytical skills while studying surface water samples with instrumentation, including ion and gas chromatography and molecular and atomic spectroscopy.