Sheila Smith, University of Michigan- Dearborn's blog

29 Oct 2018

A change is going to come!

Submitted by Sheila Smith, University of Michigan- Dearborn

It's been a long, a long time coming

But I know a change gonna come, oh yes it will.-  Sam Cooke

A few changes have happened to the VIPEr website overnight! We're rolling out the web content for the next phase of the NSF supported IONiC VIPEr project! And we're super excited to introduce the first cohort of VIPEr Fellows, along with Flo's new snakey BFF, Feller!

11 Jul 2018

Stand back, I'm going to Science!

Submitted by Sheila Smith, University of Michigan- Dearborn

Not to be outdone by my colleagues at the Organometallic GRC, I was reminded of our fun Science T-shirt day at the Dearborn Summer workshop!  Here are some of the entries.  Which ones are your favorites?  Got any more to add?  Post your pictures in the replies on the IONiC VIPEr Facebook page.

16 Feb 2018

Teaching Bonding with Nicolai and Henry!

Submitted by Sheila Smith, University of Michigan- Dearborn

We are excited to announce our next VIPEr summer workshop!  

Our focus is changing slightly from past workshops, but we will still follow our successful model of having (mostly) PUI/teaching faculty interact directly with primarily research R1 faculty to build content pieces for the classroom based on their research.  

18 Sep 2017

Laying the Foundation

Submitted by Sheila Smith, University of Michigan- Dearborn

I'm just starting the third week of my Foundations Inorganic Course, which I like to call GenChem III. This is the course where I tell my science majors the "why?" behind all those pesky Periodic Trends we made them memorize in GenChem. I teach my course pretty heavily focused on bonding and much less on Periodicity. But we do spend some time early on in the course on the orbitals, shielding effects and the repercussions on periodicity.

2 Mar 2017

Playing it Safe- part two

Submitted by Sheila Smith, University of Michigan- Dearborn

How many of us have cringed at the basic lack of chemical knowledge on display on your friend's Facebook page?

What is our responsibility to teach in these circumstances?  Maybe none at all.  This is a social space after all.  

But in our classrooms and teaching labs, our responsibility is different.  

How do we teach our students to be safety conscious without teaching them to be fearful?

2 Mar 2017

Playing it safe

Submitted by Sheila Smith, University of Michigan- Dearborn

I've been thinking a lot about how we teach chemical safety lately.  As I set up a new laboratory at UM Dearborn, a decade and a half into my independent career, I am trying to take the opportunity to make my workspace  and my work habits safer, both for myself and for the next generation of students who will move through my lab.  At the same time, I am on sabbatical at Wayne State University this year, and was forced... er... erm...

28 Nov 2016

Get 'em while they're young!

Submitted by Sheila Smith, University of Michigan- Dearborn

There's an effort underway to make the Gordon Research Confernces more inclusive by supporting researchers with small children and family responsibilities.  Many of us have enjoyed the Gordon Research Conferences, but the immersion type events can be difficult on families. 

Specifically, the letter asks the leadership of the GRCs to consider three changes:

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