- WEB EXCLUSIVE
- PE COFFEEHAUS
“The chemical sciences are at the forefront of efforts to find new energy sources; improve the environment; design chemicals that learn to imitate biological processes; detect and respond to terrorist attacks; create new drugs and artificial human organs; and better understand how human cells behave chemically.”
Because of this, chemical engineers and chemists must meet 13 “grand challenges” for the 21st century, which the report says includes recruiting more women and minorities, revising undergraduate and high school curriculums to make chemistry more appealing to students with varied interests; provide more hands-on research experience to undergraduate chemistry majors; and provide more federal financial support to facilitate discoveries in the chemical sciences and ensure a technically proficient workforce.
In addition, industry, which relies on the trained people that universities produce, should assist by offering fellowships for doctoral students in the chemical sciences and chemical engineering. Chemists and chemical engineers also need to do a better job of explaining their accomplishments to the public and news media. See “Beyond the Molecular Frontier: Challenges for Chemistry and Chemical Engineering” at www.nap.edu/books/0309084776/html/.