BY ROBIN Y. LINDSEY
Roanoke College, Salem,
How long did it take to plan the activ-
ity and what was involved?
It took two planning meetings to orga-
nize the activity and prepare the order
forms. It took another meeting and a trip
to a discount store to figure out what we
could buy for under $10. Then it took
some time to purchase all the materials,
spread out among several people over
several weeks, and one meeting with a
group of chapter members to put the kits
How many people attended the event?
The Massengill Auditorium, with
approximately 253 seats, was com-
pletely full, and people were even sitting
in the aisles.
his year, the Roanoke College Student Affiliates chapter prepared and sold ‘Exam Survival Kits.’ The
last weekend in September is Family
Weekend at Roanoke College, when par-
ents and other family members are invit-
ed to visit their student and faculty mem-
bers on campus. The chemistry depart-
ment puts on a “Chemistry Magic
Show” on Saturday afternoon,
open to the entire campus. This
show, which has earned a reputa-
tion for being a “don’t miss” activity,
usually starts with a “Welcome to
Chemistry” message written on a
large sheet with a sodium hydroxide
solution and dried. When sprayed
with phenolphthalein the hidden mes-
At this event, the Student Affiliates
handed out forms that family members
or others could use to order an Exam
Survival Kit to be distributed during final
exams in the fall. Sold at a price of $10,
each kit consisted of a large graduated
plastic beaker stuffed with a pocket-
sized periodic table, pens, pencils, a
high-polymer eraser, Play-Doh, an ACS
“mole,” and packs of gum and candy
including “Maroons” M&Ms (Maroons
is the nickname for Roanoke College’s
sports teams). The kit was wrapped with
colored plastic wrap and decorated with
glitter and a ribbon. The total cost to the
chapter per kit was about $8.
What was the age range of the
The ages ranged from 6 to 66 years old.
How long did it last?
The Magic Show lasted for an hour.
We accepted order forms for two
months, although almost all of the kits
were ordered at the Magic Show.
What safety equipment was required?
No safety equipment was needed
for preparing or distributing the Exam
Survival Kits. At the Chemistry Magic
Show, protective goggles and lab coats
were used, and a fire extinguisher was
nearby, all arranged by the chemistry
COURTESY OF ROANOKE COLLEGE
How many SA participated?
The planning and research was done
by the Executive Committee (officers,
committee chairs, and faculty advisor),
about seven people altogether. The kits
were put together by a larger group of
chapter members. Two chapter mem-
bers distributed and collected order
forms and gave receipts at the Magic
Show, and approximately 15 chapter
members helped with presentations at
the Magic Show.
Note: Exam Survival Kits is an activ-
ity that could be done by any Student
Affiliates Chapter group, scaled to their
own particular situation.
For more information contact Ben
Huddle, faculty advisor at Roanoke
College, at Huddle@Roanoke.edu.
ROBIN Y. LINDSEY is
a lead program associate
in the ACS Undergraduate
Programs Office. To submit
your chapter activities,
contact Robin at r_lindsey@
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