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“Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with elements and compounds composed of atoms, molecules and ions: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during a reaction with other substances. In the scope of its subject, chemistry occupies an intermediate position between physics and biology. It is sometimes called the central science because it provides a foundation for understanding both basic and applied scientific disciplines at a fundamental level. For example, chemistry explains aspects of plant chemistry (botany), the formation of igneous rocks (geology), how atmospheric ozone is formed and how environmental pollutants are degraded (ecology), the properties of the soil on the moon (astrophysics), how medications work (pharmacology), and how to collect DNA evidence at a crime scene (forensics).” – Wikipedia
Why is Chemistry important?
“Chemistry is essential to our daily lives; we are able to carry out our various activities because of it.
The very action of you seeing is due to a chemical reaction. When you open your eyes about 51% of the photons (light) are absorbed with the other 49% being scattered. The light absorbed allows opsins to undergo a cis/trans isomerization. This in turn sends an electrical signal to the brain that processes the info which allows us to see.
Generations of medications, use of your cell phones or even birth control that women have access to is all due to chemistry.”
Do you think Jamaican schools should focus more on the sciences?
“Science is under-explored by students. According to the government approximately 0.1% of all students exposed to science graduate with a science degree at any tertiary institution. This is problematic because we need scientists in order to push the country forward. Scientists plays a vital role in our society and they facilitate optimization and enhancement of different processes. If students continue not to pursue science our country will not improve.”
What advice would you have for someone who would like to study Chemistry?
“Chemistry can be challenging, just ensure you see it as a whole and do not learn it as separate sections. When learning Chemistry, the connection between the different types (organic, physical, inorganic, and analytical) made me love it and appreciate it even more. Also, look for the practical applications of all the techniques you learn. Often when teaching Chromatography students don’t realize that chemists use this technique to develop cologne and perfumes which generate a lot of income for many persons. This information always stimulates students’ interest in the topic as most students think all you can do in Chemistry is teach. THIS IS FALSE.”
In your opinion, which is stronger? Nature or Nurture?
“Though I recognize the role nature takes, I think nurture is a stronger force. We are free beings that can choose our own destiny. We can always change our behaviors to facilitate upward mobility in our lives. This change may require effort but it is this self-discipline which pushes you to success.”
What do you hope to accomplish when you obtain your PhD?
“I will further my qualifications to develop a platform for myself. With this platform, hopefully, I will be able to start my own business generating some of the products (a lot of which are easy to make) that we import. Furthermore, I want to continue research, and with the help of God I will discover something great that will benefit mankind, putting Jamaica in the spotlight of the scientific community.”
Please feel free to message Marcel at:
Blessings in abundance!