The University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras campus is well-known for having a large student body at the Natural Sciences Faculty. These students usually move with the masses in the same direction: to the library, from class to a lab, scrambling to find their lab coats, pumping caffeine into their body in order to survive finals… it’s a vicious cycle. But it’s a more complicated story when it comes to chemists, especially those are Organic Chemistry majors.
There is an endless supply of clichés involving Natural Sciences’ students. There are students who live permanently attached to a book and a styrofoam coffee cup. There are students who pull Adderall all-nighters for imminent tests. Some have no idea what it means to have a social life. Others can’t remember the last time they saw their friends, or as a matter of fact, the last time they went home.
It’s not easy, so one wonders: how do they manage that much stress? Jean Marcos, a chemistry student, told us: “To manage stress I usually watch some series, get in a little exercise or sometimes I read.” Another chemistry student said that sometimes the easiest way to unwind is to “drink a bit of alcohol.”
A chemist does not have an easy semester. He must learn to find a way to balance things, organize time to study, and to have fun. But why blame them if their favorite compound is ethanol, eh? Pretty soon we will see them making mixtures using a special distillation method to make their rum less strong. Chemists to the end!