Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Official blog of the Lehigh University Chemical Engineers

Update on Classes

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The semester has truly flown by; we have a mere three weeks of class left. Then, the dreaded finals week comes and forms an ominous black cloud over campus. It’s crazy to think that in a little over four weeks, I will be halfway done with my undergrad at Lehigh. Lately, I’ve been trying to figure out what I want to do this summer. In February and March I applied to several REU programs at various schools. I am still waiting to hear decisions from a few of the schools, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed, I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to research somewhere this summer. Similarly, I’ve applied to several internship opportunities but have not heard back from any of them. I limited my search to areas near my home and Lehigh, next summer I plan to broaden my search and find an interesting internship position. I’ve been in contact with professors here at Lehigh to see if there are any research positions available in the labs at school. Most of the positions have been filled, but hopefully professors receive more funding and are able to offer more positions for undergrad students.

Classes have been going fairly well lately, I’m learning a ton of new information and it’s a lot to process, but I feel that I’m really building a solid base for chemical engineering. I’ll run through all my classes and give a little description of what is going on.

Thermo: I have my third thermo exam next week, so the information we will be learning this week is imperative for the exam. Right now, we are exploring vapor-liquid equilibrium of binary systems. Binary means that there are two different substances each in the vapor a liquid phases. We have been looking at several different equations and graphs to model how these systems behave and determine variables that describe the states. This week, I think we will be studying fugacity,

ECE 083: I have one exam this week and it’s in ECE 83. For the past few weeks we’ve been looking at AC circuits, which are like the circuits in a house. We’ve also been studying filters (high pass and low pass) which are mechanisms that either allow high frequencies or low frequencies pass through while altering the opposite frequency. I’m going to have to work hard the next few days in preparation for the exam.

ChE 179: I’m really excited for ChE 179 this week because we will be taking a field trip to an oil refinery in New Jersey. I really have no idea what to expect at the plant, but I’m looking forward to it. Maybe I’ll be able to form an idea of what I want to do upon graduation based on what I see at the plant and hear first-hand accounts from employees.

Orgo: Organic chemistry has been pretty intense this semester, there is a ton of information and topics that must be covered. We have been moving through the chapters fairly quickly but I think I have a decent handle on everything. I have a quiz tomorrow so I’ll have to study a bit tonight. We have been looking at amines (rings, alkanes) lately and different reactions involving aromatics. It’s going to be important to bear down the next few weeks and be ready for the last exam and final.

BIOS 41: Thankfully, I had my final bio exam last week. I’m not really interested in bio and have trouble understanding a lot of the concepts. It seems that a lot of the class in memorizing a bunch of proteins and different components in cells. Since it’s not really part of my major, I’ll have to work harder to make sure I understand everything. The last topics we explored were mitosis and meiosis which if the division of cells.

Three short weeks and a handful of final exams, and I’ll be done for the year. Hopefully I can find a career opportunity for the summer and do well on the rest of my exams.


Author: Ben Dunmire

I am a sophomore Chemical Engineering major at Lehigh. On campus, I am the president of Club Baseball and a member of AIChE and NSCS. Outside of school, I enjoy the outdoors, fishing, and any type of athletic activity. You can reach me at

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