Departmental Activities

The following are some chemistry and not-so-chemistry activities that the students and faculty participate in each year:


Student-Faculty Softball Game

Each year, the students faceoff with the faculty and staff in a not to be missed softball game. Everyone comes out to cheer their party on, and enjoy burgers and brats in the process! The tradition started about ten years ago, and apparently the faculty won the first game. Who leads the series depends on who you ask (student or professor), but the record probably stands about even.


Holiday Party

At the end of first quarter each year, the students, faculty, staff, their friends and loved ones enjoy a potluck dinner at the annual holiday party. Traditionally, the second year graduate students organize the festivities and present several skits about funny things that happened their first year, funny things their professors said or did, etc. We guarantee there is not a straight face in the crowd by the end!


Welcome Picnic

After the new first year graduate students enjoy their orientation period, including trying out the eyewash, the second year graduate students throw them a welcome picnic to introduce them to the department! There, they also meet their "bad influence", an older graduate student who has volunteered to show them the ropes. Click on the thumbnails below for some welcome picnic moments.


Tiger Talks

Every Wednesday night during the academic year, a seasoned graduate student or post-doc presents his or her work to their fellow graduate students. It is a wonderful opportunity for students to find out what their peers have been working on, and for the presenter to obtain feedback in a very low pressure, fun atmosphere. The room that the talks are held in house the most famous blackboard at the University. In the late 1970's, a graduate student artistically rendered a beautiful tiger on the blackboard with chalk! It has remained there unaltered for some 30 years - hence the name of the seminar series.



PSD Friday Happy Hour

Every Friday evening during the academic year, students of the chemistry deparment kick back at Happy Hour with other students in the Physical Sciences Division (physics, math, statistics, geology). Delicious Chicago style stuffed pizza, samosas, beer and softdrinks all at rates subsidized by the PSD tend to attract long serpentine lines of students each week.


PSD Softball League

Each summer, the Chemistry Department fields three softball teams, with fitting names like "The Impact Parameters" (The Imps for short), that compete in a very laid back version of softball with other members of the Physical and Biological Sciences Divisions. Students and faculty alike come out. In 1999, a prize was introduced into the series called the Levy Cup - named after one of the current chemistry faculty members who is a loyal member of the "House of Tiki" softball team.


Benzene – UChicago Undergraduate Chemistry Society--Student-faculty basketball game in conjunction with the annual Hillhouse Memorial Lecture

In honor of Hillhouse's love of sports, his former colleagues battled his former students on the court.



Chemistry Department Visitation Weekend

The department's breakfast at the Signature Room for admitted students visit weekend.


Department Summer Picnic