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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

Table of Contents

Abstract Volume 17 (2012) pp 175-178
DOI 10.1007/s00897122444

Chemistry and Hip Hop: Outreach Efforts to Attract Minority Students to the Chemical Sciences

Sibrina N. Collins*,† Curtis J. Deer and Juan E. Gilbert§

†Department of Chemistry, The College of Wooster, Wooster, OH 44691,; ‡Department of Chemistry, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195; §School of Computing, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634

Published: 14 September 2012

Abstract. Broadening participation within the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields remains a challenge for many institutions of higher learning. Although more underrepresented minorities (URMs) are earning degrees in the STEM fields, the overall statistics still indicate low participation within the URM population. In this paper, we describe our efforts to attract URMs to the chemical sciences using culturally relevant concepts from hip hop. We are using hip hop as a “vehicle” to discuss chemistry concepts such as hydrogen-bonding, periodic table trends, and minority contributions to the chemical sciences. To date, we have targeted 130 URM high school students attending Collinwood High School (Cleveland, Ohio) and student participants in the Samuel DuBois Cook Summer Academy housed within the Office of Minority Affairs at The Ohio State University (Columbus, Ohio).

Key Words: Of Special Interest; high school; analogies; history; minorities in chemistry; music

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail:

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