Monday, June 28, 2010
First Day of Class
From the orientation we went to our respective classes, in my case this was Intense Seminars in Modern Chemistry with Professor Luis Avila.
Although I’ve only had a single day to form an impression of the class it seems to be very interesting. In only an hour or two we were shown several demonstrations of chemical phenomena including the condensation and combustion of liquid oxygen, the blue shifting of a semi-conductor based light with liquid nitrogen, and the use of a cooled superconductor to levitate magnets. Aside from being a chemist, Professor Avila is also in charge of numerous historical artifacts related to chemistry that populate the halls of the building and he took us on a tour of the building and the history of chemistry at Columbia. The focus of the class seems to be on lab work so I don’t share as heavy a workload as my fellow ILC members in the Presidential Powers course, although I do have longer class times.
I’ll end this post with my thanks to the ILC for making this possible, I’m really looking forward to the rest of the course. I included a shot of the dorm room to give an idea of what the living quarters are like.