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High School Students Are Chem Majors for a Day

Students from the Science Academy of Morristown High School visited TCNJ on December 14, 2006 to experience a day of college-level science and bring together what is learned in the classroom and a real-world application.  Pfizer, a supporter of the Academy, helped finance the trip to TCNJ, and Dr.Pauline Pan, a senior scientist at Pfizer, accompanied the group. Dr. Georgia Arvanitis, Chair of the Chemistry Department, hosted the group. The students attended two lectures and performed an experiment. One lecture, given by TCNJ adjunct faculty member Mike Berardini, was on the formulation of the essential oil in a mouthwash, and the other lecture, given by Dr. Pan, was on testing the antimicrobial activity of the essential oil. The experiment involved extracting essential oils from cloves, the process used by Pfizer to create flavoring for Listerine mouthwash. “Very often, kids are not able to make (the) connection between what they learn in school and what goes on in the world,” said Academy director Jill Magidson. One of the participating students, Amanda Bowser, a high school sophomore, observed “We started out with so many cloves, and ended up with so little of the solution.” Drs. David Hunt and Bob O’Fee of the Chemistry Department assisted in the project. More information may be found at