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Newton Lab Hosts Local Governor's Honors Nominee

High school student Copper Callahan, science teacher Robert Pulliam, and UGA Chemistry graduate student Skyler Hollers stand in an organic chemistry lab with fume hood and lab bench in the background

As part of their ongoing commitment to outreach, the Newton lab from the UGA Department of Chemistry recently hosted Copper Callahan, a 2024 Governor's Honors semifinalist in science from Clarke Central High School in Athens. Dr. Newton had met Copper's high school teacher, Mr. Robert Pulliam, and discussed Dr. Newton's interest in providing outreach and mentorship opportunities for local students. Mr. Pulliam then suggested that the Newton lab could be helpful in aiding Copper in preparation for his upcoming Governor's Honors selection process.

Hosted by Dr. Newton's graduate students, Copper spent a morning touring the lab and observing several experiments that were in progress. He then underwent a mock interview to help prepare him for the Governor's Honors advanced selection round to determine finalists for the program. 

Though they are one of the newest labs in the Chemistry Department, the Newton lab has already participated in or hosted several outreach events for local students, including:

  • Served as volunteer supervisors of written exams and lab-based events for regional and state-level Science Olympiad tournaments
  • Students in the Newton lab developed flash cards to assist in the study of 120 common, organic chemistry, named reactions, which include mechanisms and brief descriptors of the overall transformation. Flash cards are available online at no cost via the Newton lab website  (
  • Hosted Clarke Central high school students and provided miniature lectures, along with a total of eight experimental demonstrations, on entry level chemical principles such as polymer synthesis and the importance and relationship of reduction/oxidation reactions.
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Assistant to the Department Head: Donna Spotts, 706-542-1919 

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Head of Chemistry: Prof. Jason Locklin