Even though my fourth semester at Lewis & Clark is winding down, the interesting activities don’t stop. Last Friday, my football team had a game night in our locker room. Our coaches and a few kids on the team had the idea for the whole team to get together and play video games and other games for the evening. Several of us made a tournament playing NBA 2k16 and the UFC 2 video games, while others started a poker game. It was a lot of fun to relax with my teammates and play each other in video games. It gave those of us who live on campus a chance to hangout with those who live off campus. In addition to playing video games and poker, our coaches also ordered pizza, which was a delicious dinner. That’s one one my favorite things about our head coach: he does a very good job building a team and doing things like this to ensure that we really are a team.
Even though the semester is winding down, we are doing a really cool experiment in our organic chemistry lab. To start the lab off, we are given an unknown solid and liquid. In this lab, we have to use every test we have used this year in order to determine what our unknown is and pick it off a list of unknowns. Several of the tests we use are fairly simple. One of the biggest tests that helps indicate what we have is the melting point of the solid and the boiling point of the liquid. For these, all we have to do is watch the unknown and record the value at which it either melts or boils. Other tests involve NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance), which is essentially a giant magnet and is very similar to MRI, that allows us to see where certain elements are located in the compound. Based on the graph we generate, we can use it to compare to known parts of a compound which gives us clues to what it is. It’s almost like a giant puzzle for Organic Chemistry.
Other than that, I am getting ready for finals. It will be here before I know it. That's all for this week.