For more than forty years, Chicago has kept its tradition of dyeing its river green for St. Patrick's Day. Contrary to popular belief, although the city promotes the event, it does not pay for it. It's sponsored by the local plumbers' union and started when that group used fluorescein dye to trace illegal substances that were polluting the river more than 40 years ago. The EPA has since banned the use of fluorescein for this purpose and today more than 40 gallons pounds of vegetable dye are used to turn the river green.
Although the dying of the river is to celebrate St. Patrick's Day, the event itself takes place on the closest Saturday to St. Patrick's Day. This year, it fell on Saturday, March 10, just prior to the official start of AIChE Spring 2011. But several staff members were there and captured some photos from this year's "greening of the river." I like to think of it as "ChEnected Green," or at least pretty close!
The AIChE Foundation raises funds to support projects and activities that further the Institute's mission and enable the profession of chemical engineering to have a greater impact on the world. Donations small and large make a difference.
Nancy Chang left her home in Taiwan at age 19 and set off for America to study. With the decision to study biology, she took the first step in a long journey that led to a highly successful career in biotechnology.
Chang studied at Harvard Medical School as one of the school’s first international students. She received a Ph.D. in biological chemistry and became one of the world’s most successful biotech businesswomen after cofounding Tanox (now part of Genentech), a company that sought remedies for asthma and allergies through the use of genetics engineering.
Hear her moving story told firsthand in the accompanying video.
This video is part of The Catalyst Series: Women in Chemistry from the Chemical Heritage Foundation.
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