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Union Students' ACS Chapter Promotes Chemical Safety

JACKSON, Tenn.April 25, 2003 – Students in three Jackson elementary schools will be safer around household chemicals thanks to the efforts of the Union University student affiliate chapter of the American Chemical Society. The students visited classes at Alexander Enhanced Option Elementary School, Lincoln Magnet Elementary School and Whitehall Enhanced Community Elementary School during March and April.

"Our goal is to increase the awareness of household chemicals and how they are to be used and handled safely," said Haylie Thompson, a senior at Union and the director of the ACS chapter's Operation Household Chemical Safety. She and fellow Union students Rusty Cabanaw, Ruth Hall, Emily Bland, Dawn Akridge, Neil Jackson, and Cara-Anne Phillips, Ingrid Renberg, Trina Hall and Michael Kieffer demonstrated to third and fourth graders the importance of safety measures such as goggles and gloves when handling possibly dangerous chemicals. They also instructed the children on environmental safety issues such as the proper disposal of paint, used oil and gasoline.

"The Union students present these things from a different perspective and in a fun way for the children," said Shirley Roberts, third grade teacher at Alexander Elementary. "They will remember these students when these situations come up."

"This project is the result of a consistent desire to make a difference in our community on the part of current and former members of our chapter," said Charles Baldwin, O.P. and Evalyn Hammons University Professor of Pre-Medical Studies at Union and faculty advisor to the ACS chapter. "Each of these students has made a personal sacrifice of time and energy to help protect Jackson's children."

These students will also be volunteering at the Hazardous Household Waste Collection Day at the Jackson Fairgrounds April 26 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information on that event, call (731) 425-8227.

Media contact: Chris Allen, news@uu.edu, 731-661-5215

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