2000 Annual Report to ACS

The following is a summary of overall Montana Section Activities for 1999:


Activity # 1

  1.   Title:   Montana Section Meeting-In-Miniature

     b.   Name, Address, Phone, E-mail of contact person

        Dr. Donald Stierle

        Department of Chemistry

        Montana Tech

        Butte, MT 59701

        406-496-4117, dstierle@mtech,edu

    The section held a technical meeting on April 24 at Montana Tech. Section members and student affiliates presented 21 papers (see Appendix 3 for the program). Dr. Don Kiely, Director of the Shafizadeh Rocky Mountain Center for Wood and Carbohydrate Chemistry gave the keynote Address. The section gave 3, $500 travel grants for the three best presentations of the day.

Activity # 2

  1. Title: Teaching Chemistry Through Demonstrations

     b.   Name, Address, Phone, E-mail of contact person

        Dr. David Hobbs

        Department of Chemistry

        Montana Tech

        Butte, MT 59701

    4    06-496-4194,

    The Montana Tech Chemistry Club presented a day of chemical demonstrations, hands-on chemistry projects, teacher learning activities, and fun on November 8 (for materials and newspaper stories see Appendix 3) in conjunction with NCW. The Chemistry Club organized, set up and ran the days festivities which included tours through Tech’s newly remodeled Chemistry/Biology building. This event attracted an enthusiastic 400 people (mostly children). The Section gave the Chem Club $600 to travel to the ACS San Francisco National Meeting to present a poster on this activity.

    This was a new activity.

Activity # 3

  1.   Title:    Montana Section Fall Social

     b.   Name, Address, Phone, E-mail of contact person

        Dr. Andrea Stierle

        Department of Chemistry

        Montana Tech

        Butte, MT 59701


    Each year the section sponsors a Fall social that gives our section a chance to come together and talk. This year the social was held at Chico Hot Springs Resort, MT. The events included as Executive Board meeting, a catered hors d’oeurve party, a student poster section and a presentation given by Dr. Joe Sears on his travel to northern Greenland. Recognition of our 5 50 ACS year members was done also.


        Activity # 2    Teaching Chemistry Through Demonstrations (see above)


The Montana Section has been fairly active this year in quite a few small activities as we are in most years. We maintain a website that keeps our members up-to-date on section activities. We always supply judges for the regional science fair in Butte, this year we also gave awards to the best chemistry projects. We nominated one of our outstanding high school teachers, Ms. Karen Spencer, from Great Falls High School for the James Bryant Conant Award. We continued our crystal growing contest, the prize money of $250 was donated by Ken Emerson, a section chemist. One of our major thrusts in the future will be organizing the NORM 2003 meeting which will be held at Montana State University in Bozeman. Most of the efforts mentioned above are made by individual section members but certainly help all of our section.


   1999 Goal Attainment The Local Section Activities Committee strongly encourages local section planning. As a result, the     1999 local section annual report should follow-up on the attainment of goals. Please list the goals you set at the beginning of     your term for your section and yourself, and report on the attainment of the goals.

    a)     Local Section Goals and Assessmen (these were also the Chair's Goals)::

    1. Stimulate more interest in the ACS and in chemistry-The chemistry department at Montana Tech has recently initiated a chemistry special topics course aimed at teaching undergraduate students how to give meaningful chemical demonstrations to the public. This will increase the contact of these students with the public.
    2. Stimulate more interest in the local section activities-We had several traditional local activities that are important in joining the local section. These are the Meeting-In-Miniature and the Fall social. I would like to increase the number of people attending these activities.
    3. Bring more chemical education to the public-The Montana Section is fairly active in helping the public understand chemistry by sponsoring activities such as Forums on ballot initiatives and chemical demonstrations. I hope to help sponsor more of these activities this year.

    These are the three goals that I set for the section and myself for 1999. I think that we were fairly successful. We certainly   had a great year as far as 1 and 3 above. The Chemistry Club from Montana Tech visited 14 schools and gave chemical      demonstrations. They put on a superb NCW show which attracted over 400 people. These students will go the National ACS meeting in San Francisco to give a poster on their work. As far as 2 above, we did have our usual Meeting-In-Miniature in the spring and Fall Social but each of these was not much more successful that in past years.

   b)    2000 Chair’s Goals:

        1.     Promote chemistry understanding and awareness among members of the community in the local section area.

        2.     Assist local section secondary school chemistry teachers and elementary school teachers with instruction in chemistry.        

        3.     Support graduate student research efforts in local section colleges and universities.


Since the Montana section of ACS is a diverse group of chemists that is spread out geographically, it is hard to get many things going on a section scale. We try to do the best we can. We do have a fairly active executive committee that does a great job but even trying to get individuals to run for executive office is sometimes hard. Chemists in our section are interested in the section activities but because of the long travel distances and iffy weather we may not get much participation in an event.