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Public Affairs : Chemical Engineering Club meets new majors

AIChE Club provides updates,
welcomes new CE majors

Submitted by the American Institute
for Chemical Engineering Club

The American Institute for Chemical Engineering Club conducted a meeting Nov. 6 to welcome the chemical engineering majors from the Class of 2015 and update club membership on activities—past and present. The meeting also presented a teaching opportunity on the chemical engineering behind the chocolate-making process inside Bartlett Hall to more than 30 cadets in attendance.

Class of 2013 Cadet Matt Letarte opened the meeting with a warm welcome to those who recently joined the ranks of U.S. Military Academy chemical engineering majors. Class of 2013 Cadet Dan Prior provided an update on the Kicking Mule Brewing Company, which is a cadet-driven, beer-making venture first started in 2009 through the Directorate of Cadet Activities. Class of 2013 Cadet Alex Goldstein spoke about progress in “the pit” of the Chemical Engineering Car Team.

The cadet leadership also organized a chocolate-making demonstration, affectionately dubbed “The Chocolate Show,” as a hallmark chocolate making demonstration expertly executed by members of the West Point Chocolate Factory. Cadet Laura Ruiz, head of Confectionary, and her assistant, Cadet Amy Hill, delivered a block of instruction on the chemical engineering of chocolate production with samples that were devoured almost immediately. Ruiz was the first cadet to do a chemical engineering AIAD—or advanced individual academic development—at the Hershey Company this past summer and it was clear how much expertise she gained from this opportunity. After the demo, the cadets conducted an informal question and answer period.

Class of 2012 Cadet Laura Ruiz and Class of 2013 Cadet Amy Hill talk about making chocolate in the West Point Chocolate Factory. More than 30 cadets were in attendance for this unique chemical engineering event. Courtesy Photo

This event was supported by the Hershey Company who sent original Hershey ingredients for testing in the West Point Chocolate Factory and is due to send more supplies for hot cocoa. The club appreciated the contributions from Jim St. John and Matt Andersen, USMA Class of 1994, of the Hershey Company.

Membership in the Chemical Engineering Club isn’t mandatory for all ChemE majors but it’s encouraged for obvious networking and educational benefits. The Chemical Engineering Department reported an increase in majors this year, with 53 cadets enrolled in this field of study.


2011 Pointer View article on Chemical Engineering majors

USMA Chemical Engineering website