Frank Valoy ’23 and Joel Adade ’22 with their poster.
Hamilton students often have opportunities to interact with experts in professional settings. Over Spring Break, I joined several other aspiring chemists — including Joel Adade ’22, Audrey Battiste ’22, Nate Keyes ’22, and Frank Valoy ’23 — at the American Chemical Society convention in San Diego.

As undergraduates, it was exciting to present our projects and attend talks by chemists ranging from established researchers to graduate students. I joined Battiste and Valoy to present research we had done at Hamilton with Professor Wes Kramer, who attended the convention with us. Adade and Keyes presented work they had done at the University of Pennsylvania and Worcester Polytechnic Institute, respectively. It was incredibly inspiring to receive feedback from a wide audience.

ACS Covention, spring 2022, group
From left, Joel Adade ’22, Frank Valoy ’23, Nate Keyes ’22, Audrey Battiste ’22, and Kate Peinkofer ’22 at the American Chemical Society convention in San Diego. Photo: Wesley Kramer

My presentation included research I conducted last summer for my senior thesis, thanks to Hamilton’s summer research program and a grant from the Edward and Virginia Taylor Fund for Student/Faculty Research in Chemistry. I’m working to develop possible metallopolymers for use in a cancer treatment called photodynamic therapy. In addition to gaining significant research experience that has helped confirm my passion for research, I developed strong and lasting friendships with other chemistry majors in the department, some of whom were also on this trip.

As a senior chemistry major planning to pursue a Ph.D. in chemistry, it was also valuable to witness the world I will soon be entering. I attended research talks by professors I might work with in graduate school and got an in-depth flavor for their research and the different research being done by others in the field. I was also very excited to see talks by three separate professors I had cited in my thesis. 

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