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Organizer Information

The COMP Programming Board is always looking for individuals or groups that want to organize symposia and provides the framework and tools necessary to organize a great symposium. If you are interested in organizing a symposium at a future ACS meeting please contact Emilio Xavier Esposito ( emilio.esposito AT ) or Scott Wildman ( wildman AT ). We are CURRENTLY accepting organized symposia for the San Diego (spring 2016), Philadelphia (fall 2016), and San Francisco (spring 2017) ACS National Meetings. This is an excellent opportunity for COMP’s members to organize symposia that are of interest to the scientific community. We are excited to receive your ideas for symposia.

The information contained on this page is for those interested in organizing or already organizing a symposium within the COMP technical program for a national ACS meeting. The information has been gathered over the past several years and is updated regularly. 

Organized Symposia Guidelines

To reduce symposia and topic overlap within the COMP technical program at national ACS meetings, organized symposia (symposia organized outside of the member-contributed symposia) will be accepted with the expectation that no overlap occur between any two organized symposia. This will apply to the broadly defined topics with no more than five (5) organized symposia:
  • Computational Study of Water 
  • Drug Discovery 
  • Materials Science 
  • Membranes 
  • Molecular Mechanics 
  • Quantum Chemistry
  • Scripting & Programming
  • ACS Award for Computers in Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research (spring ACS meetings)
Organized symposia topics are accepted on a first-come-first-serve basis. Those wishing to organize a symposium that is similar to one that is already accepted can either: (i) wait until a future meeting or (ii) ask the organizers of the accepted symposium if they are accepting co-organizers.

There must be at least one (1) meeting hiatus between organized symposia that cover/discuss a similar topic. For example, a symposium that focuses on structure-based drug discovery cannot be organized for back-to-back meetings. To allow for the presentation of research that is at the forefront of the computational chemistry field, extenuating circumstances will be considered for those requesting symposium topics that have been presented at the previous meeting.

Organized symposium can have a maximum of 6 sessions that are arranged sequentially (non-concurrently). The organized and member-contributed symposia will be arranged by the COMP Programming Board to insure minimal topic overlap within COMP’s technical program.

Organized symposia are accepted once the title and brief description – at least four clearly written sentences – have been sent to and accepted by the COMP Programming Chairs. Accepted symposia are listed on each National Meeting’s respective page found here.

Symposium that are in Honor of a specific scientist or group of scientists are typically scheduled for the fall National ACS meeting to reduce conflicts with the ACS Award for Computers in Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research that is held in at the spring National ACS meetings. 

The COMP Programming Board encourages all organizers to include a round table discussion at the conclusion of their symposium to provide an overview and open discussion of the current state of the research.


The specific day/time for speakers or even the entire symposium cannot be guaranteed at the outset. It may become necessary to move a session due to conflicts with sessions within COMP, other division's programming, or room availability to name a few. Every effort will be made to satisfy the requests of symposium organizers.

Papers should be scheduled for 30 minute slots. Morning sessions should start no later than 8:30am and end no later than 12:30pm. Within a morning session it is advisable to have six 30 minute talks and one 15 minute break. Afternoon sessions should start no later than 1:30pm and end no later than 5:30pm. Within an afternoon session it is advisable to have seven 30 minute talks and one 15 minute break. Panel or group discussion time can also be scheduled after a set of papers where this seems appropriate. All breaks, intermissions, must be 15 minutes in length.

NOTE: ACS programming policy states that if a session has less than 3 hours of programming, no new session should be scheduled until additional papers are slotted in the first session.

What is the ACS ID?

The ACS ID is the username you use to log in to the ACS website and NOT your ACS membership number. Your ACS ID is used to assign you as an organizer to your symposium and lists you as an organizer in all materials related to the symposium (C&ENews, the on-site program, the online program, etc).

If you do not have an ACS ID, they are free and available to everyone; including those that are not ACS members. To get an ACS ID, please do the following:
  • Go to and click the link for '250th ACS National Meeting in Denver, Colorado'
  • Click the link in the blue 'Registering is easy' button; lower-left of the screen

Abstract Submission

All abstracts must be submitted by the presenting author. Speaker conflicts (day, time and room assignment) are performed based on the ACS ID used to submit the abstract. If different people submit abstracts for the same speaker there is no way to determine a speaker conflict until it is too late. NO late or partial abstracts will be accepted. Ask your speakers if they need to have their institution approve their abstract and request that they the approval process before abstract submission opens.

COMP-Sponsored Registrations

The COMP-sponsored registrations can be used for anyone that is an ACS member and the COMP Programming Board encourages organizers to provide the COMP-sponsored registrations to undergraduate and graduate students along with post doctoral associates. The COMP Division provides registrations for two organizers (can be transferred to junior symposium participants such as graduate students, post docs and related positions, and non-tenured faculty that are in tenure track positions) plus one additional registration for each full-day of organized sessions (e.g., if 2 full-days, 4 sessions total, are organized, then 2 registrations at the ACS member rate are provided by the COMP Division). 

Those receiving the COMP-sponsored registrations must be ACS members. Speakers and organizers from companies that participate in the ACS Expo are strongly encouraged to request a meeting registration through their employer/institution.


The COMP division supports the organizer's fund raising to cover costs of their symposium. Thus, it is primarily the responsible of the organizer(s) to solicit funding from outside sources to permit supporting additional expenses such as refreshments, speaker support (travel, lodging, meals, and meeting registration) and other costs. All such efforts must be coordinated through the COMP Program Chairs and the Treasurers.

Upon obtaining funding, the donor should be directed to make a check payable to the Computers in Chemistry Division and forward it to the division Treasurer, and the Program Chair should be informed of the specifics of funds obtained.

When the program is complete, submit a request for expenses (with receipts) to the Treasurer and the Program Chair. The Program Chair will instruct the Treasurer to release the funds upon approval of the expense request.

It is intended that funds raised by the organizers be available for unrestricted use to support their session, however final approval of the Program Chair is required.

Typical Refreshments at COMP sessions

The typical refreshment orders for COMP sessions at ACS national meetings are provided below. Please understand that the COMP Programming Board does NOT require organizers to provide refreshments at their sessions. Organizers are typically not charged for unused individually wrapped items (e.g. sodas or granola bars). 

Morning sessions
4 gallons of Starbucks fresh brewed regular coffee ($72/gallon)
1 gallon of Starbucks fresh brewed decaf coffee ($72/gallon)
2 gallons of Tea Forte brewed tea ($72/gallon)
2 dozen assorted Granola bars ($3.50 each)
1 dozen assorted Signature breakfast breads and coffee cakes ($52/dozen)
2 dozen assorted Whole fruits ($3.00 each)

Afternoon sessions
3 gallons of Starbucks fresh brewed regular coffee ($72/gallon)
1 gallon of Starbucks fresh brewed decaf coffee ($72/gallon)
2 gallons of Tea Forte brewed tea ($72/gallon)
24 soda ($4 each)
2 dozen (24) assorted fresh baked cookies ($48/dozen)
2 dozen (24) assorted brownies, blondies or chocolate mint squares ($52/dozen)

Note: The cost per item(s) are for the Omni Hotels & Resorts, Dallas, Texas and are valid for the 247th National ACS meeting.


It is frequently desirable to cosponsor your symposium with another ACS division. Co-sponsoring is the act of listing the title of your symposium within another division's technical program for each half-day your symposium is scheduled. With the increased use of the individual ACS meeting app, available for smartphones and tablets, the need to co-sponsor your symposium is debatable. The ability to search for keywords will lead meeting attendees to talks and thus sessions and symposia that are of interest.

Audio-Visual Requests

Last minute requests for A/V equipment must be directed to the COMP Program Chair for approval. This is required by the ACS before they provide any additional A/V equipment.


It is possible to publish your symposium as a section in the Annual Reports in Computation Chemistry, an ACS volume, or as a special issue of an appropriate journal such as the Journal of Molecular Graphics and Modelling. Contact the COMP Program Chair for details and suggested venues. In order to ensure timely publication, arrangements can be made in advance, and speakers can have completed their written contributions before the meeting.