Author: Rob Neilley

Where the Exceptionally Gifted Fit In

Able to count to 20 in three languages by the age of 2, 16-year-old Mines student Santiago Gonzalez was reading about minerals and rocks from a college textbook before he ever attended elementary school. By age 8, he was studying programming languages, building a website (hicaduda.com) and creating apps. Today, he is fluent in more than 10 programming languages and has written 16 applications.

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Houston-Area Alumni’s Scholarship Golf Tournament a Solid Success

The Colorado School of Mines Houston Endowed Scholarship Golf Tournament that teed off on April 4, 2014, was the 14th edition of an event that by the end of the year will have created an endowment of nearly $500,000 that has already generated 23 scholarships totaling $76,000. In 2013, almost $50,000 was added to the endowment. “Not bad for a chance meeting at the baseball park,” says George Puls ’75, the tournament’s lead organizer since its inception. Puls was attending an alumni association-sponsored gathering at a Houston Astros – Colorado Rockies game when he turned to find his classmate...

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Virtual Chemistry Unlocks Powerful Toolbox

As is the case with many Nobel Prizes, when news broke on the morning of October 9, 2013, that the chemistry award was going to three distinguished scientists for their respective contributions to the field of computational chemistry, most people didn’t have a clue what this meant. Not so for Mines students, where computational chemistry is integrated into the curriculum to an unusual degree. Students use many of the tools of computational chemistry as early as the second semester of their freshman year, says Mark Eberhart, professor of chemistry and geochemistry, adding that while most universities cover the subject in their core theory, it’s unusual for undergraduates to have the chance to simulate chemical reactions with the kind of advanced software they can access at Mines. Thanks in part to the theoretical work of the 2013 Nobel laureates, modern computational chemistry software enables scientists to model complex reactions in slow motion and intricate detail. Numerous advances in pharmaceuticals, medicine and materials have been enabled by simulating similar reactions, adjusting variables virtually so as to home in on a desired outcome. This information is then used to guide far more costly and time-consuming physical experiments. As Eberhart points out, computer modeling does not replace experimentation; the two approaches complement each other. Eberhart has helped lead the integration of computational chemistry into the graduate and undergraduate curricula at Mines. Early exposure...

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Current Issue: Summer 2018

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