The History of Chem Gems
Chem Gems was created as a way to engage AP (Advanced Placement) Chemistry students with chemistry concepts. Jeff Bracken, the AP Chemistry teacher, wanted students to see how chemistry affects the real world. He decided to show students how making soap is actually a lesson in chemistry.
The first batch of soap was created in 2015. There were 3 or 4 loaves which didn’t turn out the greatest! The first batch of bath bombs were made by hand in 2015, a grant was used to purchase the first bath bomb press. A year later, a second grant allowed for the purchase of a second one. Now bath bombs can be produced with better quality and speed.
The first name for this company was “Heavenly Scents”. It was a play on the letters HS for High School. Soaps and bath bombs were sold exclusively to Westerville North students during lunches.
In September of 2017, Chem Gems was officially born. Students in the local BPA (Business Professional of America run by business teacher Amanda Mosely) came up with the name. They felt it payed tribute to the chemistry students that made the products as well as had a fun name that would be recognizable to all consumers.
A student who took Digital Arts (with teacher Melanie Celello) was able to create a logo of an Erlenmeyer flask to represent the company. Another student made a display item (with principal Scott Gaddis) in “The Shop” (which is a fab lab that is located within Westerville North). This display item is in the shape of an Erlenmeyer flask as well.
In November of 2017, Chem Gems made its first public debut at the “Mark Twain Craft Bazaar”. Sales were good and patrons gave wonderful reviews. December of 2017 Chem Gems participated in another craft fair. After these two showings, Chem Gems is here to stay and ready to continue to grow.