Campus Life

Chemistry Open House Set For Saturday, Oct. 21

The 35th annual event will be in its new West Campus home, the Instructional Laboratory and Innovative Learning Building.
By Shana K. Hutchins, Texas A&M University College of Arts and Sciences October 5, 2023

A Chemistry Road Show staff member shows off an experiment.
The day-long slate of activities will feature three presentations of the popular Chemistry Road Show. 

Texas A&M University College of Arts and Sciences


In the spirit of all things scientific, occasionally explosive and all-around inspirational, the Texas A&M University Department of Chemistry is gearing up to host the 35th annual edition of one of the most popular educational attractions to be found on the Texas A&M campus.

Texas A&M Chemistry invites science enthusiasts from across the Brazos Valley and the state of Texas to join in celebrating three decades and counting of one of Texas A&M’s proudest fall traditions, the Chemistry Open House and Science Exploration Gallery, set for Saturday, Oct. 21, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the new West Campus home for all things chemistry — the state-of-the-art Instructional Laboratory & Innovative Learning (ILSQ) Building.



The ILSQ opened in January 2023 as a showcase for undergraduate chemistry teaching laboratories, from general chemistry to organic chemistry. Described as the premier laboratory building in the country, the ILSQ also features collaborative learning spaces and onsite tutoring and academic support for the 15,000-plus freshmen and sophomore students the facility is expected to serve each year.

The open house is held annually in conjunction with National Chemistry Week, celebrated this year from Oct. 15 to 21 and centered around the theme, The Healing Power of Chemistry. Attendees can even channel their own healing power by participating in an onsite community blood drive as a theme-inspired special feature for this year’s event.

Visitors are encouraged to start their open house experience at the “Welcome” tents outside the front entrance of the ILSQ Building, located on the west side of Wellborn Road directly across the tracks from its sister facility, the Innovative Learning Classroom Building, on the corner of Old Main Dr. and Olsen Blvd. Free parking is available in Lots 6774100A and 100B nearby the ILSQ, with additional paid parking to be found in the West Campus Garage.

Chemistry Open House participants conducting an experiment
Chemistry Open House participants conducting an experiment

Texas A&M University College of Arts and Sciences


“We are incredibly excited to move this event to our new laboratory home,” said Dr. Daniel CollinsFirst Year Chemistry Program instructional associate professor and event co-organizer. “This location allows for this event to be a showcase of just how special the Department of Chemistry, the College of Arts and Sciences and Texas A&M are. The Chemistry Open House allows us to open our doors to the local community, get young students excited about STEM and highlight the work done by amazing scientists, both faculty and students. We are so glad to be adding newer, bigger demonstrations, including different collaborations across colleges and the university, and to add a dimension of excitement and engagement for all ages. We are so proud of the history of this event and what it has meant to the department for 35 years, and we hope that this year’s Open House sets us up for many more decades ahead!”

Beyond the chance to tour the premier laboratory building in the nation and its spaces dedicated to both general chemistry and organic chemistry and to meet the Texas A&M Chemistry Mole, attendees are encouraged to enjoy hands-on demos, experiments and computer activities as part of the Science Exploration festivities. Additional attractions also will include onsite food trucks and a lunch buffet at Sbisa Dining Hall.

The day-long slate of activities will feature three presentations of the popular Chemistry Road Show (10 a.m., 12 p.m., 2 p.m.), which will be held in Room 101 of the adjacent Herman F. Heep Building, located diagonally to the ILSQ and northwest of it on Olsen Blvd. The show is recommended for all ages and includes popular science demonstrations, such as fires, explosions, weird polymers and super-cold materials. Please note that the free color-coded tickets for seating, which can be obtained at the welcome tent, are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis and tend to go quickly.

In addition to faculty, students and staff from the Department of Chemistry, activities and demonstrations also will be presented from various departments throughout the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Engineering and science-based student groups across Texas A&M Arts and Sciences and the broader campus.

The Chemistry Open House and Science Exploration Gallery is sponsored in part by VWR Scientific, McGraw-Hill Education, the Texas A&M College of Arts and Sciences, the Texas A&M University-American Chemical Society Local Chapter and the First Year Program in Chemistry.

For more information, visit

Media contact: Shana K. Hutchins,

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