Project SEED Summer Research Program Overview 2022

The four passionate students participating in the 2022 CSW Project SEED Program have been conducting research under their dedicated mentors at three research institutions within the DMV. The program kicked off June 20th with a welcome and small networking session, and will culminated on August 20th with a poster session attended by the student’s mentors, family, and members of CSW members. Over the last two months, the students have accomplished the following inside and out if the laboratory.

June 20 – The CSW Project SEED Committee hosted the four 2022 CSW SEED Students and their mentors for a networking and summer research kickoff event. During this 2 hour in-person event the SEED students were able to network with members of the SEED committee, amongst themselves, and with the attending university professors and mentors. Student heading off to college in the fall even got to meet people from the university they were going to attend, bonus!

July 6 – Students came in person to learn from a virtual panel of professionals in chemistry and chemical engineering. The panelists ranged from postdocs to professors, lawyers to company presidents. The hybrid format of this event allowed for people with limited time, or from further locations, to speak to the CSW SEED students about their experiences. The SEED student asked many insightful questions about preparing for university, a career in chemistry, and beyond! The CSW SEED Committee is thankful and indebted to the members who graciously offered their time and gave students a view into the carriers you can attain with a degree related to chemistry.

July 29th This virtual session held by the CSW SEED Committee was attended by CSW SEED Students and focused on an important piece of science education and career development: How to present technical content. For those of us who have been presenting research and technical content for years, we may have forgotten how daunting it can be. It may now be second nature to incorporate differences between reports, slide presentations, and posters—but to students conducting their first research presentation, this information was valuable. Each of the students leaned all-in and took the information they digested during this event to prepare posters for the August 20th Culminating Poster Session and Awards Ceremony held at ACS Headquarters in Washington DC. Tune in to the October Capital Chemist for the recap of this successful event! Thank you to everyone who came and supported our SEED Students!

Bonus! – The students were paired with research that matched their interests, not necessarily to laboratories that were close to their home. For many of our students, this meant over an hour on the metro each way (and for those of us who take the metro, we know that the time is on a good day—bad days can take even longer!). This year, The CSW Project SEED Committee, piloted our Travel Green – Public Transportation Reimbursement for Project SEED students. Through this program the students applied, sent in their metro route and estimated cost, and were reimbursed for any Green Public Transit (i.e. bus, metro, bike) between their home and the laboratory. On average, this saved the students more than $200 out-of-pocket costs, and promoted a sustainable mindset in our young future chemists!