Campus Celebrity: Jeff Carmichael

If you haven’t already met Jeff Carmichael then you must not have satisfied your science requirement yet.  Jeff is the one person you never fail to see in the lab, at science-related presentations, or even at your chemistry tutoring sessions.  Our Campus Celebrity is an inspiration for every student here at Connecticut College, excelling in the Chemistry and Italian departments and already committed to a notable graduate program in Santa Barbara.  Learn more about this talented chemist before it's too late as he tells us what he does both inside and outside of the labs; maybe you’ll even discover your new crush after you learn his guilty pleasure and his inspirational Orgo advice!

Class Year: 2014

Hometown: West Hartford, CT

Extracurricular Activities: Varsity Rowing Team (Freshman-Sophomore year)

Major/Minor: ACS-Chemistry (Major), Italian Studies (Minor)

Guilty Pleasure: Watching romantic comedies (chick flicks).

Favorite TV Show: Psych

Fun Fact: I'm partly colorblind

What are your plans after graduation? Grad school for Chemistry at UC Santa Barbara

Some of us are still trying to find our calling, what sparked your interest in chemistry?

Seeing cool reactions on TV, like explosions and fun crazy reactions and whatnot. I wanted to know how they worked, why they did what they did. I guess you could say that initially sparked my interest. Then what keeps it going is just realizing—as I learn more—how everything ties into everything else, and how everything just makes sense.

What do you hate the most about chemistry? 

Titrations; watching for tiny color changes in a solution is just not my strong point.

If you had to spend a day on a deserted island with any scientist, who would it be?

Walter White (Breaking Bad).  He would make it a fun time.

What is your favorite class you have taken at Conn?

Probably Advanced Inorganic Chemistry.  Or, as far as non-science courses go, the Italian course on Dante.

What's your favorite element and why?  

Palladium (Pd), because of its versatility in homogeneous catalysis.  And it has a really cool name.

What piece of advice would you give to the students enrolled in Organic Chemistry next year?

Don't freak out; it's not nearly as bad as it's made out to be, it's just overly hyped-up.  Go in with confidence.  Timo (the professor) is a really chill, awesome dude.