Recent Events

2016 AIChE Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference – University of Delaware

On April 8, 2016, six Lafayette Chemical Engineering students enjoyed an enlightening day at the AIChE 2016 Mid-Atlantic Regional Student Conference. The conference took place a Delaware University. We got to hear from two incredible keynote speakers Ms. Linda Myrick and Dr. Sujata Bhatia. Ms. Myrick shared her experience of climbing her way up the corporate ladder at a variety of chemical and pharmaceutical companies. The closing keynote Dr. Bhatia delivered an inspiring address encouraging students to use their education and work towards ameliorating the global health crisis.

Samantha Buczek, Class of 2017, presented her poster entitled Comparative Framework for Binder Formulations Used for Inkjet Metal Printing in this year’s poster competition. Austin Bashline, Class of 2016, and Rachel Elias, Class of 2017, competed in this year’s paper competition. Austin presented on the thermodynamics of ternary systems of long-chain n-alkanes in short changed n-alkane solvents, while Rachel presented on cold flow behaviors of biodiesel with varying fame and triacetin compositions. Congratulations to Rachel for winning 2nd place!

In the end, Lafayette was delighted to be invited to the University of Delaware to benefit from the wisdom of a diverse group of Chemical Engineers. We look forward to attending next year’s conference at Rowan University!

Liquid Nitrogen Demo: National Engineers Week 2016

On February 25, 2016, Katie Wyttenbach ’11 of Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. returned to Lafayette to hold a liquid nitrogen demonstration. Ms. Wyttenbach first informed students of the many professional uses of liquid nitrogen and of its hazards. Afterwards, she gave exciting demonstrations illustrating its diverse applications, its properties, and some ways in which it can be extremely dangerous. Some of the many demos included: levitating metals by altering their magnetic properties, condensing air immediately on contact, and almost-instantly removing oxygen from a closed space (shown using candles). At the end of the event, liquid nitrogen oreo ice cream was created for students to sample!

2015 National AIChE Student Conference

In November 2015, the national AIChE student conference was held in Salt Lake City Utah. Lafayette College sent seven students to participate in the conference – several of which participated in the student poster competition to present his/her research. Out of 386 total posters from highly regarded institutions in the U.S and select international schools, four Lafayette students were placed highly in their respective research categories.

Sean McSherry ’17 finished second in the Sustainability subsection. Advisors: Ashley Cramer and Dr. Phil Brunner

Aaliyah Shodeinde ’17 finished first in the Food, Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology subsection. Advisor: Chris Anderson

Cara Abecunas ’17 finished first in the Materials Engineering and Sciences subsection. Advisors: Lauren Anderson and Chris Anderson

Rachel Elias ’17 finished first in Fuels, Petrochemicals and Energy subsection. Additionally, this subsection offers overall prizes and Rachel finished first in Fuels, winning $500 and a plaque. Advisors: Lindsay Soh and Michael Senra

This is a true testament to the quality and diversity of Lafayette College’s research endeavors in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. Each of the students who participated in the poster session is thankful for the carefully fostered relationships shared with the research advisors and professors in the department.



2015 Air Products Plant Tour

On Saturday, April 25, the Lafayette Chapters of AIChE and SWE (Society of Women Engineers) co-sponsored a trip to the Air Products plant in Hometown, PA. Lafayette Alumni Bill Holler and Mike Barrett gave a tour of the fluorine plant to nine Lafayette students. Students were able to see that the same education they are receiving is used daily in plants. Throughout the tour, students saw the various operations that must occur to run a plant, and they were able to ask any questions they had about working in the plant, career paths, or about their education at Lafayette.

2015 AIChE Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference – University Of Maryland, College Park

On the weekend of April 10-11th the Lafayette College Chapter of AIChE sent seven students to the AIChE Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference at the University of Maryland, College Park. Students attended/participated in professional workshops, poster sessions, information sessions, presentations, the annual ChemE Car Competition and many social events.

Hayden Jarboe ’16, Michael Meshberg ’16 and Danielle Ricciardi ’17 represented the Lafayette College AIChE leadership at the annual Chapter Presidents Meeting. They each made connections with Presidents from many other schools in the Mid-Atlantic Region. The executive board was also represented by AIChE Advisor and Professor, Michael Senra. Professor Senra was a judge in the ChemE Car Competition.

Other members of the Lafayette College AIChE chapter who attended the conference include Rachel Elias ’17, Yehou Gnopo ’15, Long Nguyen ’15 and Christopher Verni ’15. All four members presented posters in the research poster competition highlighting their research during the previous summer and academic year(s). The highlight of the weekend was Long winning co-1st place in the poster competition.

Overall, the 2015 Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference was full 0f wonderful experiences including learning about the industry and networking with fellow student and professional Chemical Engineers. We look forward to attending the next Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference at the University of Delaware!

Ideal Center for Innovation Fresco Painting Event

In Late February, the IDEAL Center for Innovation hosted an educational and artistic art restoration event. The AIChE Mentoring Program was thrilled to participate in this event to build relationships and utilize teamwork! Students were first taught the chemistry behind art degradation and restoration. Afterwards, mentors and their mentees worked together to paint their own piece of a fresco! The frescos will be pieced together and put on display for all of Lafayette to see!

2015 Literacy Day

Literacy Day is an annual event organized by the America Reads team through the Landis Center. Children from the surrounding Easton area are brought to Lafayette in attempt to instill in them a love for reading for literacy.  A variety of Lafayette organizations participate in Literacy Day.  At AIChE’s station, the children took part in an experiment in which they tapped (using different utensils) different sized beakers filled with water to listen to the unique sounds. The children then created their own “spoon character” relating to the Literacy Day story.

2014 ChBE Cookoff

On Friday October 24, the third annual Lafayette ChBE Cookoff took place on the first floor of the Acopian Engineering Center.

Each group was allotted 30 minutes to make a cold dish and an additional 30 minutes to make a hot dish. The curveball for this year’s cook-off was that all dishes had to be gluten free. Fortunately, each team had no problem handling this challenge and all of the dishes created were quite tasty.

There were four teams of  8-10 students each, spearheaded by a ChBE Professor: Chris Anderson, Ashley Cramer, Michael Senra and Lindsay Soh.

A panel of judges including Serena Ashmore (Mechanical Engineering Secretary), Javad Tavakoli (ChBE Professor Emeritus) and some ChBE alumni determined that Team Cramer (Blue) was the winner of the competition. Team Senra (Red) finished in second place overall, while Team Soh (Pink) and Team Anderson (Yellow) finished third and last respectively.

The Cookoff had a large turn-out from the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Civil Engineering Departments. In addition, many non-engineering students and faculty across the campus tasted the delicious food created by the four teams. We happily anticipate hosting the 2015 ChBE Cookoff and to conquering the next culinary curveball!


2014 AIChE Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference – University of Virginia

On the weekend of March 29-30th the Lafayette College Chapter of AIChE sent six students to the AIChE Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference at the University of Virginia. It was an eventful weekend with students attending professional workshops, poster sessions, presentations, the annual ChemE car competition, and many social events in-between.

For first year students Barker Carlock ’17 and Danielle Ricciardi ’17 this was their very first AIChE Conference. They both attended the  various professional workshops and also a career fair that was hosted by the sponsors of the event Syngenta, Evonik, Merck, and many more. Allyson Hill ’15 and Seth Gottlund ’14 both represented the Lafayette College AIChE leadership at the annual Chapter Presidents Meeting and made connections with lots of other AIChE Presidents from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Deleware, Maryland, Virginia, and New York. The highlight of the weekend for Lafayette College was the research paper competition. Tyler Fruneaux ’14 presented his research with Dr. Lauren Anderson on “Analyzing RT2 Profiler PCR Arrays to Profile Cell-Matrix Interactions on Smart Biomaterials.” Tyler won first prize in the entire competition and will compete at the national conference in Atlanta in the fall. Dana Lapides ’16 also presented her research entitled “Effect of nanoparticle surface chemistry on adsorption and fluid phase partitioning in aqueous/toluene and cellular systems,” which was conducted under Dr. James Ferri. Dana came in third place in the research paper competition, and she also plans on continuing to present her research at the national conference next fall. Click on the following link to view Tyler and Dana’s abstracts:

LC AiChE Mid-Atlantic Abstracts

Overall it was a fantastic weekend for Lafayette Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering. Below are some photos from the weekend and we can’t wait to attend the next Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference!



2014 Air Products Liquid Nitrogen Demo

On Friday, February 21st Don Bucci, Katie Wyttenbach ’11, and Shannon Noll ’13 of Air Products & Chemicals Inc. held a liquid nitrogen (LIN) demo in AEC 200. The LIN demo was AIChE’s contribution to the National Engineers Week (Feb. 17th – Feb. 21st) in which all departments and engineering organizations hold events to give opportunities for students to learn more, teach each other, and have fun with the engineering field.

Mr. Bucci has over 30 years of experience giving liquid nitrogen demos to students of all ages. During the demonstration Ms. Wyttenbach and Ms. Noll helped him to safely conduct classic experiments including the freezing of balloons, shattering flowers, and the awesome effect that LIN has on superconductors. As always the experiments started with the importance of safety when using any chemicals in a classroom setting and all participants had the proper personal protective equipment throughout the event. The event was attended by students from all different engineering divisions, class years, and by the faculty/staff of the chemical engineering department. A few photos from the demonstration can be found below: