The Sceptical Chymist | Transatlantic Tales: An introduction

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Posted on behalf of Nessa

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So, hi everyone! I’ve been asked to write about my experiences coming from Britain to a chemistry lab in the US. I’m an undergrad, just finished Finals at Oxford Uni with another research year left, and this summer I have a placement in an organic chemistry research lab at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. You might have seen me around a little bit on the RSC blog Confessions of an Undergrad.

I have to admit, moving to Illinois for 3 months was a little bit daunting. I’d never been to the US before, or abroad at all hardly, so it was particularly strange becoming an international student. As soon as I left the airport, I started to notice how everything was just a little bit different. Driving on the right, pizzas the size of bike wheels… nobody warned me about how every single doorknob and lab gas tap turns the wrong way, either!

Anyway you’ll be hearing from me over the next 3 months as to what the differences between research labs on both sides of the Atlantic are. I spent two months last summer in one of the organic labs in Oxford. Let’s see how they compare!

Nessa (you can find me on G+ here)

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