Non-covalent interactions are an important class of intermolecular forces that effect chemical reactions. In this presentation, a new approach is proposed for quantifying non-covalent forces throughout a chemical reaction using symmetry-adapted perturbation theory (SAPT). This method is applied to elucidate the contributions of these interactions to the activation energy barrier, providing new insight into chemical reactions. Additionally, this presentation will share some practical career/guidance for those students interested in pursuing a career in scientific research. Specifically focusing on what you can do right now, and in the near future to position yourself as a top-tier candidate for the job you desire.