The 40th Annual Science Atlantic/CIC Chemistry Conference (ChemCon) was held this past May at the University of New Brunswick (UNB) in Fredericton. More than 100 undergraduate and graduate chemistry students from the Atlantic provinces came together to learn about student research and to share their work. Engaging keynote presentations by Tom Baker of the University of Ottawa and Bruce Sanford and Blaine Sherwood of Irving Blending & Packaging in Saint John, and special presentations by BioVectra as well as the Chemical Institute of Canada (CIC) were rounded out by fun evenings of karaoke and trivia.
Andrew Cameron of the University of Prince Edward Island took home the Science Atlantic Undergraduate Research Award for his presentation on “Applications of Machine Learning on Quantum Chemical Databases: High Accuracy for Low Cost.” UNB Fredericton researcher Ricarda Konder’s talk on “High-Resolution Laser Spectroscopy of Ruthenium Monophosphide” landed her the prestigious Murray Brooker Award for the Best Undergraduate Oral Presentation in Chemical Education. For graduates, the Best Graduate Oral and Poster Presentation Awards went to Jennifer Murphy of Memorial University and Graeme Soper of Saint Mary’s University, respectively, for their work on “Green Processing Technologies for the Valorization of Waste Mussel Shells and Mono- and Bis-phenylpropargyl Imidazolidinium Cations: Structure and Reduction Behaviour.” The closing banquet set the stage for an intense bidding war that resulted in Mount Saint Vincent University and Memorial University being named as the 2016 and 2017 conference hosts. ChemCon 2016 will be held in Halifax from June 2-4, directly preceding the 99th Canadian Chemistry Conference June 5-9. A full list of CIC and Science Atlantic award winners can be found at www.scienceatlantic.ca.