What do you do at the CIC?
I am the office’s Community Development Coordinator, which means I wear many different hats. Sometimes you will find me working with our members in student chapters, local sections, and subject divisions, where I am always trying to foster a strong sense of community. When our national conferences get up and running, you will see me busy organizing the professional track in the program. I also help to ensure our regional chemistry conferences are organized. And if you come into our Ottawa office most days, I’ll likely be at my desk writing something, whether it’s the script for a video, a formal report, or some other piece of content that will be used in a wide variety of outreach activities, on our Web site or through social media.
How has your background led up to this work?
I’ve spent a lot of my life in university, getting a degree in biology at Queen’s University, another degree in neuroscience at Carleton University, and just this spring I graduated from Laurentian University with a Master’s degree in science communication. I’ve also spent a lot of time in various science-related jobs and extra-curricular activities, such as collecting biological samples in the Arctic, grinding up fruit flies for research, and working on my interpersonal skills as a mental health mentor. Although I enjoyed the sciences as a way to sharpen my eye for details and develop problem-solving skills, I really enjoyed the communication program at Laurentian as a way of bringing those skills to the rest of society. This is what brought me to CIC, where I’m excited to be applying my passion for connecting people through science.
What else should people know about CIC?
It’s easy to think of CIC as an organization that puts on big, interesting conferences and other high-profile activities for everyone with an interest in chemistry. But there is a lot more going on here. We have a place for anyone with an interest in the chemical sciences, from high school teachers to retired professionals and academics. CIC sets up a wide range of scholarships, awards, and dedicated outreach events like the National Crystal Growing Competition and Canadian participation in the International Chemistry Olympiad. This is also the primary source of news and other information about Canada’s place in the wide world of chemistry, which you can find all around our news site. In fact, there is so much going on here that it is worth reminding our members that the National Office in Ottawa is a small, tightly knit team that punches well above its weight. And it’s an honour to be part of that group!