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Professor shares his love of molecules with College

Molecules were on Raymond Giguere’s mind — and his tie. (Tom O'Dell / Photo Editor)

By Kaleigh Levoyer

Raymond Giguere, a chemistry professor at Skidmore College, presented his exhibit “Molecules that Matter” on Friday, Nov. 11 in the Mildred and Ernest E. Mayo Concert Hall as the second-to-last Brown Bag event this semester.

“Molecules that Matter” consists of models of the most influential molecules of the 20th century. The molecules were constructed from a series of large spheres and rods connected together, rendering them almost 2.5 billion times their normal size.

The purpose of these oversized models is to enhance public understanding and appreciation of natural science. They have been displayed at the Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore, according to Giguere.

To a nearly full concert hall, he explained the molecules and their importance to humanity in the past century while showing pictures of the models themselves.

“Your lives, any of our lives, are different from our parents’, our grandparents’, because of the 10 subjects in this exhibit,” Giguere said.

The 10 molecules in the exhibit, some of which included aspirin, penicillin, DNA, progestin and DDT, were selected from well over 100 different options, Giguere said.

Following the lecture, Giguere answered questions from those in attendence. Responding to one question, he said he wished to see Taxol, a breast cancer drug, in the exhibit’s lineup. Unfortunately, he said, Taxol lost to Prozac by two votes during the final voting process.

After the presentation, many stayed around for lunch while others talked about the event outside the hall.

“It was an interesting look … (at) a combination of arts and science,” said Matt Pembleton, senior art education major.


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