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ACS News

2015 Southeastern/ Southwest Regional Meeting

by Linda Wang
October 12, 2015 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 93, Issue 40

Memphis, Tennessee
Credit: Shutterstock
SERMACS/SWRM 2015 will take place in Memphis.

The Memphis Section of the American Chemical Society will host the Joint 67th Southeastern and 71st Southwest Regional Meeting (SERMACS/SWRM 2015) at the Memphis Cook Convention Center, in Memphis, from Wednesday, Nov. 4, to Saturday, Nov. 7. The theme of this year’s meeting is “Exploring All Directions.”

Dennis Merat of Christian Brothers University is the general chair of the joint meeting, and Abby Parrill-Baker of the University of Memphis is the program chair. Visit the meeting website,, for program details as well as registration and hotel information.

SERMACS/SWRM 2015 at a glance


Dates: Nov. 4–7
Location: Memphis Cook Convention Center, Memphis
Information contacts: Dennis Merat, general chair,; Abby Parrill-Baker, program chair,


TECHNICAL PROGRAM. Abstract submission is now closed. The technical program will include more than 1,200 oral and poster sessions in analytical, biological, computational, inorganic, medicinal, organic, and physical chemistry, as well as a general oral session in chemical education. The undergraduate session begins on Friday and continues throughout the day on Saturday.

Symposia include “Biomedical Materials & Sensors,” “Cancer Nanotechnology,” “DNA-Modifying Enzymes,” “Entrepreneur’s Tool Kit: Resources & True Stories,” “Frontiers in Nucleic Acid Chemistry,” “Intrinsically Disordered Proteins: From Physical Chemistry to Biology,” “Materials for Alternative Energy,” “Recent Advances in Chemical Physics,” “Biorelated Polymers,” and “Student-Centered Learning in the Chemistry Classroom & Laboratory.”

Lawrence DeLucas, a former NASA astronaut and current director of the Center for Structural Biology at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, will present a plenary lecture on Friday.

WORKSHOPS. The following workshops will be taking place from Wednesday through Saturday: “Essential Training for the Chemical Hygiene Officer,” “Sustainability Workshop,” “Career Pathways,” “Chemical Industry in the South Workshop,” “High School Chemistry Teachers’ Workshop,” and “Sustainability in the Chemical Industry: Challenges & Opportunities Workshop.”

EXPOSITION. The exposition will take place on Wednesday from 5:30 to 8 PM, Thursday from 9 AM to 6 PM, and Friday from 10:30 AM to 4 PM. There will be an opening mixer on Wednesday evening and an undergraduate mixer on Thursday afternoon.

AWARDS. The following awards will be presented at a luncheon on Friday: the ACS Division of Chemical Education Southeast Region Award for Excellence in High School Teaching, the E. Ann Nalley Regional Award for Volunteer Service to ACS, the Stanley C. Israel Reigional Award for Advancing Diversity in the Chemical Sciences, the SERMACS Industrial Innovation Award, the Southwest Regional ACS Award, and the Partners for Progress & Prosperity Award. In addition, the Memphis Section’s Southern Chemist Award will be presented at a special banquet on Friday evening.

SPECIAL EVENTS. The undergraduate program will kick off on Thursday evening with an undergraduate mixer from 5 to 6 PM. In addition to the poster sessions and oral presentations, there will be a graduate school fair, as well as a Demomania competition and chemistry bowl, where different SERMACS groups can compete with one another. Al Hazari, a chemistry professor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, will present his chemistry magic show, and the program will end with the undergraduate dinner on Saturday night, where awards will be presented to top scorers in the competitions and to undergraduate students for best oral and poster presentations.

Other social events include a Women Chemists Committee luncheon on Thursday, with a keynote lecture by ACS Past-President E. Ann Nalley of Cameron University; a barbeque dinner and live country music on Thursday night; and a symposium dinner on the topic of “Recent Advances in Chemical Physics.” There will also be an ice cream social with ACS board members on Friday. Saturday’s social events include a high school teachers’ breakfast and lunch and a “Sustainability in the Chemical Industry Luncheon.”

REGISTRATION AND LODGING. Registration for the meeting opens soon. Check the meeting website for more details. The meeting hotel is the Sheraton Memphis Downtown Hotel; however, most of the rooms in the meeting block have been booked. Information about rooms that are available may be obtained by contacting the hotel directly at (901) 527-7300. Rooms in the block are $159 per day plus taxes. There is also a fee for parking at the hotel. Other nearby hotel options are the Crowne Plaza near the convention center and the Holiday Inn Downtown Memphis.  


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