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What's in your backpack?: A day in the life of a chemistry and creative writing major

Senior chemistry and creative writing major Sofie Moeller splits her time between studying equations and reading literature at Ohio Northern University. (Northern Review photo/Kasy Long)

Senior chemistry and creative writing major Sofie Moeller splits her time between studying equations and reading literature at Ohio Northern University. (Northern Review photo/Kasy Long)

What does it mean to be a chemistry major? Can a chemistry major spend time in the creative arts? Senior chemistry and creative writing student Sofie Moeller proves that at Ohio Northern University, interests can mix together for a well-rounded educational career.

But what is the daily routine of a chemistry and creative writing student? What does Moeller carry in her backpack?

Looking at her backpack, one would find textbooks and notes for her physical and environmental chemistry courses, as well as reports and research for labs. In addition to these materials, Moeller completed her senior capstone project this semester for her chemistry degree. She studied the development of two analytical chemistry methods, for the analysis of proanthocyanidins (PACs), a group of antioxidants found in a range of edible plants such as cranberries and red currants.  

I’ve always enjoyed chemistry. I have a fundamental desire to know why things work the way they do,” Moeller reflected on her decision to pursue a degree in chemistry.

Moeller finds herself in the chemistry department most days. When she’s not in class or in a lab, she studies with her fellow chemistry majors in the student lounge. The comfortable environment allows students to bounce ideas off of each other as they work on lab reports.

When she needs a break from her scientific research, Moeller heads over to Dukes Memorial to study British literature, poetry and fiction. Last semester, she completed her senior capstone project for her creative writing degree, in which she developed a poetry collection, “Halls of Freya,” on her biculturalism, since Moeller grew up in Denmark and now resides in Dublin, Ohio.

The creative writing major activates a different outlet for me. It’s more creative based. So even when I’m not at Mathile (Center for the Natural Sciences), I’m not wasting my time by reading or writing poetry. I’m doing something productive with my creativity,” she said.

Moeller hopes to combine her two majors together once she graduates in May, pursuing a career as a science writer.

“English is important to science. If you can’t communicate your (research) findings, what’s the point? I look forward to writing about science for the general public,” Moeller concluded.