The Hewlett Packard Company donated the UV-Visible Spectrophotometer to Washington and Lee University. This instrument measures the wavelength and intensity of near UV and visible light absorbed by a sample. Housed in a room connected to the General Laboratory, the UV-Vis gives freshmen, as well as upper-class students, hands-on access to this powerful analytical tool. General chemistry students are instructed in colorimetric analysis and apply the Beer-Lambert Law to determine the amount of copper in an unknown sample. The LaRiviere group uses the instrument to determine amounts and types of ribosomal ribonucleic acid (rRNA) in samples.