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Skidmore College
Peer Academic Coaching Peer Academic Coaching

Peer Academic Coaching for Chemistry

Support for ch 115, 125, 126, 221, 222 

Room: CIS 348

Peer Academic Coaches are available to help you develop your content knowledge and study skills.  There is no need to sign up.  Simply stop by!


Chemistry PAC Monthly Calendar

Sun 7-9PM Mon 7-9PM Tues 7-9PM Wed 7-9PM Thurs 7-9PM
Aida Georgia Georgia Isabella Rat
Matt Katie R Katie R Heather Heather
Bill Katie S Katie S Nicole Matt


meet the pac team for chemistry

Katie Rinaolo '22 - Chemistry PAC Co-Captain

Katie Rinaolo

Major: Chemistry

About meI am from the area and love spending my time with my family which I am able to do more often than others! I love cooking and baking in my free time (almost all problems can be solved with good food). 

Why PACI wanted to become a PAC tutor so that I could help others with their understanding. For me, getting help from other students about a subject is sometimes more helpful than talking with professors. 

Favorite class and whyMy favorite class at Skidmore so far has been Organic Chemistry with Professor Giguere because of all the new things I learned and the journey of getting through such a tough class with friends!

Academic adviceMy advice would be to prioritize your academics and manage your time as best you can. Always de-stress when you need it!

Kaitlin Smith '22 - Chemistry PAC Co-Captain

Kaitlin Smith

Major: Undecided on the Pre-Dental track

About me: I love to cook and bake. I grew up playing ice hockey and I enjoy all types of outdoor activities!

Why PAC: I found that utilizing PAC contributed to my academic success in science. I think that working through challenging course material with peers is great and can really improve understanding of a subject. I want to be able to help other students like myself who can benefit from PAC. 

Favorite class and why: My favorite class at Skidmore so far has been Biology 107. I loved learning about the intricate aspects of biology on a cellular and molecular level. 

Academic advice: Try to stay as organized as you can! When you are organized it makes dealing with tough course material much easier. I have also found it useful to get my assignments done early so if I have any questions there is time for me to ask my professors. 

Aida Castelblanco '23

Major: Chemistry  Aida

About Me: I’m from Los Angeles, CA and I love to draw, go to the beach, and play chess. I love learning about space and hope to become an astrochemist in the future!

Why PAC?: I love the community of chemistry PAC – everyone here is eager to help you succeed in every kind of way. I remember that I was pretty intimidated by the chemistry department when I first came to Skidmore, and my weekly trips to chemistry PAC played a huge role in helping me feel more comfortable as a student and as a new major. I wanted to become a PAC to help new and returning students feel more at home at Skidmore through the excitement and fun of chemistry.

Favorite class and why?: CH 125 has been my favorite class so far. It was an amazing introduction to chemistry, and I remember being super eager to learn everything and anything. It totally convinced me to become a chemistry major.

Academic Advice: Sometimes it's so easy to get caught up in the stress of classes and grades that you start to lose sight of the fun side of chemistry.  I've found that reading or watching super cool articles or videos about what researchers are working on in the fields that I'm interested in really helps to motivated me when I'm stuck in a slump.

Georgia Dittemore '22Georgia Dittermore

Major: Biochemistry

About me: I am a sophomore from Massachusetts and for as long as I can remember have wanted to study and do research in biochemistry. I love animals, reading, and spending time with my friends and family.

Why PAC: I want to share my passion and help others recognize how much fun chemistry can be if you put in the work.

Favorite class and why: I am currently taking Medicinal Chemistry, which not only analyzes drugs from the perspective of organic synthesis, but also explores the biochemical, historical, and economic aspects of pharmaceuticals.

Academic advice: I always try to finish any assignments early so that I have time if I encounter any issues and am not stressed at the last minute. Also, if you stick with material that you find difficult but are passionate about, it will eventually click, so always stay determined!


Isabella Ferraro '24

Major: Chemistry   Isabella

About me: I am from Staten Island, New York.  Some of my favorite things to do are travel, read, and spend time with friends.

Why PAC?: I want other students to feel the lightbulb go off, and for them to feel accomplished after being intimidated by a topic or problem like I did when I went to PAC. Interactive learning and discussions sometimes foster the best understanding.

Favorite class and why? My favorite class at Skidmore is Organic Chemistry which I'm taking with Professor Brezny.  "ORGO" is all about the molecules that make up the world we live in!

Academic advice: Don't be afraid to ask for help!  Also, bouncing ideas off of each other in order to come up with a collective understanding of something is often a great way to succeed in any class.

Matthew Krystyniak '22Matthew

About me: I am a local kid from Clifton Park, NY. In my spare time I enjoy listening to music and spending time with friends and family. 

Why PAC: I previously had found PAC to be very helpful in my studies, particularly in chemistry. For me, working with other students in a class is sometimes more useful than any lecture. 

Favorite class and why: My favorite class at Skidmore has been Introduction to Psychological Science because Professor Solomon taught it.

Academic advice: While doing well academically is important, make sure to keep up your mental and physical health. You can't function academically if those aren't in check.

Nicole McElhoe '22

Major: Biochemistry       Nicole M

About me:  I am from Massachusetts and some of my favorite things to do are row, hike, and do puzzles. I also love spending time with my housemates and watching Love Island while we all cook dinner!

Why PAC?: PAC was a huge help to me at the start of my Skidmore career and I want to do my part to help other students experience the joys of chemistry! 

Favorite class and why: I am currently taking Human Osteology where we will learn skeletal anatomy and analysis. I love bones and can’t wait to learn more!!

Academic advice: Physical and mental health are essential. You can’t succeed as a student if you aren’t taking care of your mind and body. There has to be a nice balance of working hard and relaxing and doing something that brings you joy.

Rat Phalkun '23

Majors: Biochemistry and Mathematics  rat

About Me: I am from Cambodia and I am also a UWC RBC aluma. I love exploring new domains and lately, I have been into cooking different types of food.

Why PAC: PAC allows me to help others learn while keeping myself connected with different areas of the subject. It is less tutoring but more of a place where we can discuss and figure out the solution together !

Favorite Class and Why: My favorite class so far is Principle of Chemistry. As an introductory course, CH 125 gave me the solid foundation in Chemistry. As a result, I now have the freedom to branch out to many higher level concentrations.

Academic Advice: It is good to thrive perfection but also remember that it doesn’t exist.

Heather Ricker '22

Heather Chemistry 

Minor: Environmental Studies and Sciences 

About Me: I'm from southern New Hampshire, and love spending time outside hiking, biking, canoeing, or just lounging in a hammock. I also love listening to music, and am often found jamming out in my green punch buggy. In the future I hope to use chemistry to try to tackle environmental issues, either with the ocean or atmosphere. 

Why PAC: I have had only wonderful experiences getting help at PAC, and I wanted to pay it forward and help others achieve the satisfaction of understanding a topic better and building study habits. Plus, I want to share my love of chemistry! 

Favorite class and why: My favorite class was Hindu Mythology, because I got to broaden my world views and indulge my childhood interests by learning all about different Hindu deities and cultures. 

Academic advice: You've made it through 100% of your hardest days, so don't give up! Enjoy the ride, and know that if you follow your passion, you can't go wrong. 

Bill Wu '23

Major: Neuroscience Bill Wu

About me: This semester, I’m a TA for BI107 and CH115, an EMT for SCEMS, and work IT in the library (where you’ll most likely find me!) I’m also the treasurer for Skidmore’s Asian Cultural Association. I love snowboarding, skateboarding, and my favorite place on campus is the green near Haupt Pond!

Why PAC: SAS helped me tremendously in my adjustment to college, specifically PAC – peer learning is one of my favorite study methods. Teaching also challenges me to think critically at a deeper level to explain different concepts in a variety of ways – a welcome challenge!

Favorite class and why: My favorite class I’ve taken so far has to be Intro to Neuroscience with Hassan Lopez. Even though it was a hybrid class during COVID, it ignited my passion of learning how we work on a neurological and physiological level. It was challenging, yet time flew by as I was studying because I was so fascinated by what I was reading. Highly recommend!

Academic advice: I’m a huge fan of active recall! Changing my study habits from re-reading notes and highlighting to using flashcards has improved not only my grades, but has drastically freed up my time as well. Talk to your professors – they’re genuinely here to help you learn, and use office hours and PAC! Everyone wants to see you succeed :)