Organic Chemistry Laboratory Team, Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences Provides Socialization on the Isolation Methods of Local Plant Secondary Metabolites with Medicinal Potential

A team of lecturers and students from the Organic Chemistry Laboratory of the Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences (MIPA), Universitas Brawijaya (UB) Malang, Saturday (28/07/2023) provided training regarding the method of isolating secondary metabolites in local plants to students and teacher of High School (SMA). Specifically, this training is aimed at chemistry students and teachers. This activity successfully took place at SMA Negeri 1 Pesanggaran, Banyuwangi Regency, which is a collaborative partner for the Chemistry Community Service activities of FMIPA UB.

The team of lecturers and PLP from the organic laboratory consists of Dr. Elvina Dhiaul Iftitah, S.Si., M.Si, Prof. Dr. Warsito, MS, Drs. Suratmo, M.Sc and Widji Sulistijo. Meanwhile, the undergraduate student team is Jonathan Linggadiputra, Adi Kurnia Soesantyo, Mochamad Hendy Fathur Rahman. In its implementation, students and lecturers were divided into 3 teams. The first team provided training on the separation of secondary metabolites using the Soxhletation method, the second team on the topic of multilevel distillation and the third team on the topic of thin layer chromatography.

According to Dr. Elvina Dhiaul Iftitah, S.Si., M.Si. This program is part of a community service program funded by Brawijaya University in 2023. “Learning science or chemistry in high school usually has a paradigm that studying chemistry is abstract and only contains calculations and theoretical concepts that must be memorized. As a result, the motivation of students and even chemistry teachers in developing chemistry is still quite low. Therefore, it is necessary to increase learning motivation and better understanding of chemistry. For example, by bringing chemistry closer to its applications and uses in improving the quality of human life,” she added. This training activity was attended by around 15 teachers and 8 students from several high schools in Banyuwangi. This training began with the delivery of two material topics by the lecturer team, which was then followed by a practicum and discussion session in the laboratory of SMA Negeri 1 Pesanggaran. During the practicum, participants can observe the isolation process using several laboratory equipment.

SMA Negeri 1 Pesanggaran, as the host, welcomed this activity, and the teachers participating in the training also responded positively. The discussions that emerged after the delivery of material in class and during practical sessions in the laboratory illustrated the enthusiasm of the participants. The results of pretests, posttests and questionnaires for participants also showed an increase in participants’ knowledge and interest in the topics taught.

Even though the enthusiasm of the participants is high and new knowledge also arises from the implementation of this program, it is certainly not free from several shortcomings and obstacles that accompany it. One of the obstacles that is most felt is that the methods that are socialized will be difficult to implement in the relevant schools due to limited existing tools and facilities. For this obstacle, the team of lecturers and students provided solutions with tools and materials, as well as cutting out several steps as an alternative form.

The success of this community service shows Brawijaya University’s commitment to continue to play a role and contribute to society. (Elvina/UB PR/ Trans. Iir)