International Olympiad Team Brings it Home
The Canadian national team brought home some serious bling from the 44th International Chemistry Olympiad held in Maryland this July. The Olympiad is an annual competition for the world's most talented secondary school chemistry students. Countries sent delegations of four students who were individually tested on their scientific knowledge and skills during both a five-hour laboratory practical and five-hour written examination. The Canadian team consisted of four students chosen at the national finals run in early June by Andy Dicks at the University of Toronto. All four students came from different high schools in the Toronto area and participated in the international competition for the first time. They were offered a two-week laboratory training program in Toronto before departure for the IChO which was held at the University of Maryland in College Park Maryland.
This year the Canadian students competed with 280 of the best and brightest chemistry students from 72 countries ranging from Argentina to Vietnam. Their chemical knowledge was tested through inorganic, physical, organic and biological problems at the level of second-year university studies. They earned the following medals: Run Ze Cao: silver medal (placed 60th in the world); Leslie Ying: bronze medal (95th in the world); Isabelle Yang: bronze medal (124 in the world) and David Pechersky: bronze medal (177th in the world). Medals are awarded to the top 60 per cent of participants.
The four team members were accompanied to Washington by Patrick Kim (head mentor, University of Toronto); Stanislaw Skonieczny (mentor, University of Toronto); Tihana Mirkovic (scientific observer, University of Toronto); and Russell Boyd (scientific observer, Dalhousie University and CSC President).
The Canadian Chemistry Olympiad team poses with their medals. From left to right, Stanislaw Skonieczny (mentor), David Pechersky (bronze), Patrick Kim (head mentor), Isabelle Yang (bronze), Leslie Ying (bronze), Run Ze Cao (silver), Tihana Mirkovic (scientific observer).
Over the course of four sunny days in Calgary this May, some 2,280 delegates gathered at the 95th Canadian Chemistry Conference and Exhibition. Above, panelists provide their insights on careers in industry for chemistry graduates at the CIC Chair’s Event (top). Simon Fraser University graduate student, Danielle Wilson, presents her poster at the evening reception. She won 1st place in the Materials Chemistry Division poster competition. The conference featured 582 posters and just over 1400 talks.
André Bandrauk, chemistry professor at Université de Sherbrooke was named Officer of the Order of Canada on May 25, 2012. The honour was awarded for his groundbreaking work in computational chemistry and molecular photonics. He is a pioneer of attosecond science—the time scale of electron movement—and is currently researching laser control of electrons for future applications in chemistry, biology and even quantum informatics.
Terry McMahon was reappointed the University of Waterloo’s dean of science. Previously, McMahon had been a professor of chemistry at the University of New Brunswick and the University of Waterloo, the director of the Guelph-Waterloo Centre for Graduate Work in Chemistry and Biochemistry and the chair of Waterloo’s department of chemistry. He was first appointed Waterloo’s dean of science in 2007.
Sudhir Abhyankar assumed the role of president of College Chemistry Canada (C3) in May. C3 is a non-profit organization dedicated to excellence in chemistry education. Abhyankar is associate professor of chemistry and environmental science at Memorial University’s Grenfell campus.
Phil Wood has had his term extended until June 30, 2013 in the role of McMaster University’s associate vice-president, student affairs, and dean of students. Wood has been part of McMaster’s faculty of engineering since 1983 and served as chair of the chemical engineering department and associate dean of engineering before being appointed to his current position in 2002.
Marie D’Iorio was named the new Executive Director the National Institute for Nanotechnology (NINT) on May 31, 2012. D’Iorio is a physicist and expert in nano-electronics. NINT, founded in 2001, is a national research and technology development organization based in Alberta. Cameron MacGillivray is the new President and Chief Executive Officer of Enform as of June 1, 2012. Enform is the safety association for Canada’s upstream oil and gas industry.
Patrice Allibert is the new Chief Executive Officer of GenePOC Inc. as of June 1, 2012. GenePOC is a Canadian company which develops DNA-based microfluidic devices.
Anthony Marino is the new Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer of Vermilion Energy Inc., a Canadian-based international energy producer with operations in Canada, Europe and Australia. Robert J. Routs was appointed to ATCO Ltd.’s board of directors on May 9, 2012. Routs is a chemical engineering graduate of the Technical University of Eindhoven in The Netherlands. ATCO Ltd. is an Alberta-based company with business in structures and logistics, utilities, energy and technology.
Doug Hayhurst and Carol Stephenson were appointed to Ballard Power Systems’ board of directors on June 5, 2012. Ballard Power Systems produces clean energy fuel cell products for optimizing power systems for a range of applications.
Ian Bruce was appointed to Cameco’s board of directors. Cameco is one of the world’s largest uranium producers and has its head office in Saskatoon, Sask.
Réjean Goulet was named Executive Vice-President and General Counsel, and a member of the Office of the President of SNC-Lavalin on May 3, 2012. The appointment is a result of the recommendations emanating from the company’s recent Internal Investigation and is meant to strengthen operations and reinforce best practices in corporate governance. SNC-Lavalin is one of the leading engineering and construction groups in the world with offices across Canada and in over 40 other countries around the world.
Charles Fischer, Bill Lambert and Mark MacDonald were appointed to Vive Crop Protection’s board of directors in June. Fischer is former CEO of Dow AgroSciences, Lambert is a former partner at Birch Hill Equity Partners (TD Capital) and MacDonald was a vice president in the private equity arm of Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board. Toronto-based Vive Crop Protection researches and commercializes formulations of active ingredients for crop protection and other applications.
U.T. Sundararaj, head of the department of chemical and petroleum engineering at the University of Calgary, has been awarded one of five of the institution’s Killam Professorships. The awards recognize faculty members who demonstrate excellence in research, student mentoring and teaching and who have also made a significant contribution to their academic discipline and to the community beyond the campus.
Save the Date
August 28-30, 2012
Oilsands 2012 Conference
September 17-18, 2012
Process Safety Course
September 17-18, 2012
Lab Safety Course
September 19-20, 2012
Risk Assessment Course
October 10-12, 2012
Pacific Rim Summit on Industrial Biotechnology & Bioenergy
October 14-17, 2012
62nd Canadian Chemical Engineering Conference (CSChE 2012)
October 26, 2012
24e Colloque Annuel de Chimie
May 27-29, 2013
3rd Climate Change Technology Conference
June 15-19, 2013
World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology & Bioprocessing
July 14-17, 2013
12th International Conference on Calixarenes
St. John’s, Nfld.
August 18-23, 2013
9th World Congress of Chemical Engineering (WCCE9)
Coex, Seoul, Korea
Things to Know
The CIC will now be providing video recordings of key presentations from our annual chemistry and chemical engineering conferences. Recordings from this year’s Canadian Chemistry Conference and Exhibition in Calgary, Alta., can be viewed at http://cic.sclivelearningcenter.com
The CIC launched a new monthly electronic newsletter in June that includes news about our societies’ activities, career resources, updates from industry, trends in technology and international news. If you didn’t receive the newsletter and would like to be on the mailing list, send your email address to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “send me the newsletter.”
The program for the 62nd Canadian Chemical Engineering Conference in Vancouver, October 14-17, 2012, will be available on August 1 at www.csche2012.ca.
Members the CIC are invited to participate in a survey being conducted by the Canadian National Institute for the Blind that seeks to better understand the incidence and nature of laboratory eye injuries in Canada. It is hoped that the information gained will help inform an awareness campaign and advocacy in order to minimize vision loss from chemical accidents in the laboratory. The survey can be accessed at www.surveymonkey.com/s/chemicaleyeinjury
The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) is seeking Canadians involved in the chemical sciences to serve as officers and committee members. These positions would encompass a two- to four- year term beginning in 2014. Interested and qualified individuals are asked to submit their curriculum vitae to the Canadian National Committee (CNC) for IUPAC no later than July 17, 2012. More information and a list of open positions can be found at www.iupac.org.
The deadline for applications for the 2013 CNC/IUPAC Travel Awards is October 15, 2012. These awards are to help young Canadian scientists and engineers, who should be within 10 years of having earned their PhD, to present a paper at an IUPAC-sponsored conference outside Canada and the U.S.A. Find out more at www.cnc-iupac.ca/awards_e.html.
Engineering Journal Jumps Up
The Canadian Journal of Chemical Engineering is growing; Beginning January 2013, it will be published 12 times yearly instead of its current six, with 2,000 pages annually up from 1,200.
A hike in the number of papers being submitted — the editors now get over 500 papers every year — and a desire to reduce publication time for the printed version are what sparked the change. “Online publication times are quite good now,” says editor-in-chief Joao Soares, “But it is taking too long to get in print.” There is also a backlog of articles accepted for publication but delayed for printing because of the current space limitation. A faster publishing time will mean the editors can invite more authors to submit papers and still efficiently handle the extra volume. “This will attract better papers and increase the impact factor of the journal,” says Soares. “This is a major, positive milestone.”
Uptake on Eye-Injury Survey Just Short of Enough
Earlier this month, members of the CIC were invited to participate in a survey being conducted by CNIB (formerly the Canadian National Institute for the Blind) that seeks to better understand the incidence and nature of laboratory eye injuries in Canada. The response was remarkable, with 333 responses within the first two weeks. The information gained is expected to help inform an awareness campaign and advocacy in order to minimize vision loss from chemical accidents in the laboratory. As of July 16, the CNIB was just 21 respondents short of achieving statistical significance. If you haven’t already completed the survey, you can do so at www.surveymonkey.com/s/chemicaleyeinjury.
International Olympiad Team Announced
The team of students representing Canada at the International Chemistry Olympiad held in Washington, D.C. in July, 2012 and their mentors, from left to right: Patrick Kim (head mentor), Isabelle Yang, Run Ze Cao, Leslie Ying, Stanislaw Skonieczny (mentor), Tihana Mirkovich (scientific observer) and David Pechersky.
Ten high school students from Ontario and B.C. met at the University of Toronto this May 31–June 7 for the 2012 Canadian Chemistry Olympiad National Camp. The Canadian Chemistry Olympiad aims to identify high school and cégep students who have a talent for chemistry, and then to prepare the best of them to participate in the International Chemistry Olympiad.
The national event is aimed at students who are in the top one per cent of high school chemists in Canada. Students are chosen to attend the camp based on the results of a national exam that takes place in April each year. The exam consists of questions at the second- and third-year undergraduate level. This year, after a week of laboratory tasks and problem solving, several mentors assessed how well the students handled the practical work and assignments. Four of the ten students were then chosen to represent Canada at the 44th International Olympiad in Washington, DC to be held July 21–30.
The students at this year’s camp, which was organized by Andrew Dicks, from the University of Toronto, were Deborah Baremberg of Colonel By Secondary School, Ottawa; Run Ze Cao, Martingrove Collegiate Institute, Toronto; Tony Han, Semiahmoo Secondary School, Surrey, B.C.; Ji Sup Kim and Scott Yargeau, Yale Secondary School, Abbotsford, B.C.; Justin Lim, Leslie Ying and Sydney MacDonald, University of Toronto Schools, Toronto, David Pechersky, Vaughan Secondary School, Thornhill, Ont.; Isabelle Yang, Don Mills Collegiate Institute, North York, Ont.
Ze Cao, Pechersky, Yang and Ying were the four chosen to move on. They will be mentored by Patrick Kim and Stanislaw Skonieczny from the University of Toronto.
Alberta Student Wins 2012 Canadian Chemistry Contest
Howie Wu of Sir Winston Churchill High School in Calgary, Alta. was chosen as the National Winner of the 2012 Canadian Chemistry Contest, organized by the CIC’s Chemical Education Division in April. Wu won out over 633 other students from more than 200 Canadian high schools.
Regional winners were: Atlantic region: Amanda Stanton (Halifax Grammar School, Halifax, 1st place) Yuandi Zhang (Fredericton High School, Fredericton, 2nd place), Luke MacLean (Cobequid Educational Centre, Truro, N.S., 3rd place); Québec region: Rodrigue Beaini (Collège de Bois-de-Boulogne, Montréal, 1st place), Maxime Leclerc (Cégep de Victoriaville, Victoriaville, 2nd place), Alexandre Saulnier-Marceau (Collège François-Xavier-Garneau, Québec City, 3rd place); Ontario region: Melody (Yun Jia) Guan, University of Toronto Schools, Toronto, 1st place), George Liu (A.Y. Jackson Secondary School, North York, 2nd place), Daniella Pallisco (Assumption College School, Windsor, 3rd place); Manitoba/Saskatchewan/Nunavut region: Wendy Ywhi Wong (Kelvin High School, Winnipeg, 1st place), Kyle Froese (Tommy Douglas Collegiate, Saskatoon, 2nd place), Anne Waugh (Kelvin High School, Winnipeg, 3rd place); Alberta/Northwest Territories: Jeffery Wang (Sir Winston Churchill High School, Calgary, 2nd place), William Clark (Westwood Community High School, Fort McMurray, Alta., 3rd place); British Columbia/Yukon: Christina Chou (Yale Secondary School, Abbotsford, B.C., 1st place), Ji Sup Kim (Yale Secondary School, Abbotsford, B.C., 2nd place), Tristan Downing (Semiahmoo Secondary School, Surrey, B.C., 3rd place). These students all receive cash prizes and certificates for their work. For more details on the Canadian Chemistry Contest visit www.chemistry.ca/ccc.
West Coast Inorganic Chemists Meet in Squamish
Chemists from the University of Victoria (UVic), the University of British Columbia (UBC-Vancouver and Okanagan), Simon Fraser University (SFU), and the University of Washington (UW) met at Quest University in Squamish, B.C., on May 11-13 for the 2012 B.C. Inorganic Chemistry Discussion Weekend. Plenary talks on small-molecule metalloenzyme models (Julie Kovacs, UW), new mesoporous materials and shape-persistent metallomacrocycles (Mark MacLachlan, UBC), and metal-organic frameworks with controllable functionality (Steve Loeb, Windsor), were very well received by the 100-plus attendees. Emphasis was placed on the active participation of the students. A series of breakout sessions ensured that each student presented a short chalk-talk on his or her current research activities. In addition, over 25 posters were presented, which promoted further research discussion. Prizes for the best posters were awarded. The CIC Vancouver Local Section and the CSC Division of Inorganic Chemistry each sponsored poster prizes, as did the journals Heteroatom Chemistry (published by Wiley) and Dalton Transactions (published by the Royal Society of Chemistry). Cash prizes were won by Samantha Connelly (UW), Michael Jones (SFU), Krista Morrow (UVic), Caterina Ramogida (UBC), and John Thompson (SFU). Further general sponsorship from the UBC, UVic, and SFU Departments of Chemistry was greatly appreciated and ensured a fun time for all in a beautiful setting!
The CIC wishes to extend its condolences to the family of T.L. Stubbs, MCIC.
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