John came to Ames, Iowa from the very busy and bustling city of Manila, Philippines, halfway across the globe. "Anything below 70 is too cold for us," he always says. Jessica, on the other hand, hails from central Illinois, and is no stranger to cold weather. Despite all of their differences, culturally and otherwise, they found themselves sharing a common interest and passion for exploring how students learn chemistry, and what educators can do (and maybe should do) to encourage more students to take an interest in all of the chemical processes that go on in their everyday lives. They do this by trying to find new ways to measure how much students actually learn from their professors and TAs, discover patterns with which such learning occurs, and design new interventions chemistry educators can use to increase student understanding of the many chemical concepts they encounter in the classroom and laboratory.

 

 

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They are excited to represent Iowa State University and the Ames Local Section at the Summit. While participating in this year's IDSS, John and Jessica aim to share their experiences in chemical education with practitioners from the more traditional disciplines of chemistry. They also hope to impart some cool tips on how to make learning chemistry less of a bitter pill the common undergrad student must swallow, and more of an adventure that brings some new excitement into their college lives.

 

They need your help to make the IDSS experience a success! Have you experienced a cool program or event at your school or in your community that helped to foster interactions and friendships between international and domestic peers? Do you have an idea for  such a program or an event?  Leave a comment below and they'll discuss it at the summit. Thanks for your feedback!