June 2021’s Newsletter

Hello Orlando Section!

Hope that you are having a great start to the summer. In this short Newsletter, beside other information, we want to bring your attention to upcoming the Florida Annual Meeting and Exposition (FAME) and the 72nd southeastern regional meeting of the American Chemical Society (SERMACS 2021).

  • As you may have seen in our facebook page, preliminary information about the Florida Annual Meeting and Exposition (FAME) is available. The meeting will be held on Saturday August 28, 2021, at the University of Florida (Gainesville). Abstract submission deadline is expected to be July 30th. This year’s emphasis is to provide an opportunity for students/post-docs to present their work. We will provide further details on registration and where to submits abstracts once this information becomes available.
  • The 72nd southeastern regional meeting of the American Chemical Society (SERMACS 2021) will be in Birmingham, Alabama on November 10-13, 2021. Abstract submission will open on June 27 and close of August 8, 2021. See conference website for more information.
  • Our local section does offer limited travel support to selected students who attend FAME and SERMACS. Please look out for solicitations in July 2021.
  • SERMACS2025 Planning Committee meeting will be held on Saturday, June 12th at 10AM. All members who are interested are welcome to join. More information can be found at our website.
  • Monthly Executive Meeting is open to members. The next meeting occurs at 10AM on Saturday 06/19/2021 via Zoom. If you are interested in joining, please do not hesitate to contact us for meeting link.
  • Some recent news on our website: Orlando Section at Central Florida Earthday, Local Participants in the 2021 U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad, Avogadro award winner at the State Science & Engineering Fair of Florida 2021.

Subscribe to our community page, follow our facebook page, and check out our website for updated news, activities of our local section.

CCEW 2021: Orlando Section at Central Florida Earthday

The Orlando Local Section took part in the Central Florida Earthday on April 25th, 2021 at Lake Eola (Downtown Orlando) to celebrate the Earth Week. This effort was led by Dr. Titel Jucar (UCF) and volunteers. Unlike previous years which had hands on activities for children, this was limited due to CDC guidance for physical distancing. The overall theme for our display was about plastics and the environment. We devised a survey to engage the public by asking them what % of plastics they believe to be recycled.

The event began at 10 AM and ended at 4PM. We were hit with a major thunderstorm at 10:30 which lasted for nearly 40 minutes. The rain damaged our displays and bent our tent. The group of ACS student volunteers pulled through, salvaged as much as we could and we went on with the day. The combination of the storm, and the added strains of the ongoing pandemic likely limited our level of interaction with the public. Nonetheless, the overall event was successful and we were able to engage with the Orlando community.

Local Participants in the 2021 U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad

The Orlando Section sponsored the participants of local student in the 2021 U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad (USNCO).  Exams were taken in an online format, starting with the Local Exam, on March 27 and 28, 2021.  37 high school students  from seven high schools in the Orlando Section 7 county area.  Ten students were nominated from this group to go on to take the National Exam Part 1 online on April 7 and 8, 2021. 

These are the ten students who took the National Exam Part 1 (in no particular order):  

Jaehyun AhnHomeschool
Aidan MeyersWest Shore High School
Vishanth MurugesonOrange County High School
Truly ThomasHoly Trinity Episcopal Academy
Parker TysonHomeschool
Alexander BudkoWest Shore High School
Andy SharVanguard High School
Lyle AlvarezTrinity Prep High School
Krithik SeelaLake Highland Prep
Aiden LiuTrinity Prep High School

One student, Andy Shar, Vanguard High School was selected to take Part 2 the following weekend, April 15, 2021.  He did not advance to the National Team.  All students received certificates.

If you have any comments or questions regarding USNCO, please contact your Chemistry Olympiad Coordinator, Mary C. Roslonowski.

The State Science & Engineering Fair of Florida 2021: Avogadro award winner

Vedant Karalkar, the 2021 Avogadro award winner.

Congratulations to Vedant Karalkar from the Alachua County’s Eastside High School junior for winning the 2021 Avogadro award! Also, the student is the Grand Award Winner at the state science fair, which was held virtually from March 28 through April 1, won special awards from the Yale Science and Engineering Association, the United States Office of Naval Research, and will represent Florida at the prestigious Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair.

Karalkar’s project is called ‘Fabrication of Napthalimide Chemosensor Using InkJet Printing on Cellulose Paper for Determination of Uric Acid and Metal in Solution.’ The young scientist developed a low-cost sensor that could be used to test for a variety of diseases in areas with little or no access to current diagnostic tests that often require more expensive instruments, sophisticated techniques and/or highly-skilled medical personnel. The Avogadro Award that is given each year at the State Science and Engineering Fair with the support of the ACS local sections in the state of Florida.

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SERMACS 2025: Call to action

Hello Orlando Section!

As many of you already know, we recently announced that the Orlando Section will be hosting the 2025 Southeastern Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society (SERMACS) in Orlando, FL on October 19-22, 2025. Although the meeting is over four years out, we have already begun the planning process and have lots to do! We are sending out this email to encourage our members to get involved in one of the following ways:

  1. Meeting Theme and Logo Contest – Calling on our creative folks! We would like to finalize a meeting theme/logo within the next few months. We want this meeting to represent the diverse science and culture of central Florida, and what better way to do that than to encourage our members to propose ideas for the theme and logo. We will also throw in free registration to the conference for the winner(s). Send your theme/logo ideas to Chris Chouinard (cchouinard@fit.edu) by Monday, May 31.
  2. Volunteer Opportunities – We are currently seeking enthusiastic volunteers to join the Planning Committee and help with to-do’s such as fundraising, meeting hotel/venue planning, and scientific symposia organization. We encourage volunteers from all scientific backgrounds to get involved!
  3. Attend a Planning Committee Meeting – We are currently meeting quarterly in 2021, with our next meeting tentatively scheduled for June. These meetings are open to anyone interested! Be on the lookout for the Zoom meeting info via email.

Please feel free to reach out to any of the Planning Committee members with questions, comments, or suggestions. We are looking forward to making this the best SERMACS meeting yet!

Christopher D. Chouinard, Ph.D.
SERMACS2025 General Chair

Councilor’s Report: 261st National Meeting, Spring 2021

The Spring Council meeting was again held virtually due to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic.  The meeting was held on March 24, in advance of the National Meeting.

Actions of the Council

Election Results

Candidates for President-Elect, 2022

The Committee on Nominations and Elections presented to the Council the following nominees for selection as candidates for President-Elect, 2022: Gerard Baillely, Anne M. Gaffney, Judith C. Giordan, and John C. Warner. By electronic ballot, the Council selected Judith C. Giordan and John C. Warner as candidates for 2022 President-Elect. These two candidates, along with any candidates selected via petitions, will stand for election in the Fall National Election.

Other Council Actions

Committee on Committees Petition

The Council approved the Petition to Harmonize Committee Structures, Processes, and Terms, as amended.

  • This petition places all committees in one category called “Society Committees” – eliminating the several different types of committees.
  • The years of service and the number of committee members on each Society Committee would now be consistent and would match the present terms of the Elected Committees: three-year terms with a two-term maximum for committee members.
  • Certain (6) Society Committees will no longer have the “Councilor only” designation, allowing an individual to join and continue service on a committee regardless of their status as a Councilor.
  • The Committee on Committees amended the petition prior to bringing it to Council, in response to several committees’ concerns, to include the bolded phrase:

The terms for a member of a Society Committee shall be three calendar years. A member of a Society Committee shall be eligible to serve two successive three-year terms on the same committee, however, that service could be extended if the appointing officer(s) determines that there is a compelling need for ongoing expertise on the committee.

  • The Petition will become effective immediately upon approval by the Board of Directors, however, existing committee assignments will be start a transition to the term limits on January 1, 2022.

Committee on Local Section Activities Petition

The Council approved the Petition to Amend the Duties of the Committee on Local Section Activities.
• This petition provides the Committee on Local Section Activities with the authority to support Local Sections by taking action on their behalf, including appointing an interim executive committee and/or facilitating a Local Section’s election when there is a lapse in the local section’s leadership.

2022 Schedule of Membership

The Council approved the 2022 Schedule of Membership, upon recommendation of the Committee on Membership Affairs:

• The Schedule reduces the base dues rate to $160 per year
• It establishes various dues categories and benefits packages based upon career stages, role in the chemical enterprise, and desired level of interaction by the Member with the Society.

Updates to the ACS Strategic Plan

The ACS Board of Directors approved extensive changes to the ACS Strategic Plan last December.

  • Equity was added to our Core Values, which now include on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Respect.
  • Our Vision and Mission statements were modified to make clear that these statements include all people.
  • A fifth Strategic Goal: ‘To Embrace and to Advance Inclusion in Chemistry’, was added to make clear that Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Respect was our commitment at the same level as our long-standing four strategic goals.

If you have any comments or questions regarding membership or benefits, please contact your Councilor, Darlene Slattery at dslattery1@cfl.rr.com or call her at 321-632-2535.

Outstanding Entrepreneur/Employer Award

The Outstanding Entrepreneur/Employer Award recognizes chemists, chemical engineers, consultants, or businesspeople aiming to expand the Private Sector’s chemical enterprise* and to those private sector employers enabling chemists and chemical engineers to earn their livelihood in Central Florida.

The Orlando Local Section of the American Chemical Society established the Outstanding Entrepreneur/Employer Award in support of its goal to promote diversity and to foster a sense of belonging among its members.  These goals apply to the ethnicity, cultural and gender identity of the membership as well as to their educational and career backgrounds.  The Outstanding Entrepreneur/Employer Award expands the scope of the recognitions offered by the local section by focusing on those chemists and chemical engineers or businessperson working on expanding the chemical enterprise beyond the realm of academia.

  • This award is offered to an entrepreneur or employer from businesses, incubator companies, or private contractors supporting the public sector. 
  • Members and non-members of the American Chemical Society are eligible.
  • The selection committee will evaluate how the candidates are advancing, or expects to advance, the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of society.
    • The application should contain a general description on how chemistry is key to the success of the enterprise without disclosing proprietary information.
  • There will only be one award offered annually.
  • The Orlando Local Section may retain nomination packages not selected on a given year for consideration in a subsequent year.
  • Consideration will be given to the challenges associated with the maturity and size of each nominated enterprise.
  • Candidates offering mentorship or training to aspiring chemists or engineers will be favorably viewed.

Call for nominations will be solicited in August of each year.

* The chemical enterprise is the broad and encompassing industry that is focused on the understanding of the physical world at the molecular level and its subsequent development for the betterment of society. This covers academic, industrial, governmental, and non-traditional organizations related to the field of chemistry.  For this award, the private sector chemical enterprise refers to consultants, providers of goods and services, manufacturing companies to include those that provide chemical and chemical engineering services to the public sector.

Download this Flyer

April 2021’s Newsletter

Hello Orlando Section!

In this Newsletter, we want to communicate upcoming activities of the Orlando section to all members.

  • Wednesday, April 21st at 6PM, Dr. P. Buhlmann, University of Minnesota, will give a seminar entitled “Electrochemical Ionophore-based Sensors: From Fluorous Polymers to Nanoporous Carbon and Lipophilic Redox Buffer Polymers“ as part of student-organized UCF-FIT Joint-Chapter Speaker Series. More information about the event and how to attend can be found at our website.
  • Sunday, April 25th from 10AM to 4PM at Lake Eola (Orlando), the Orlando Local Section will participate in the Central Florida Earthday. Please come and join us.
  • We are looking for news stories on what is happening in our local chemical enterprise: we shared announcements on job openings and on achievements at some of our local entrepreneurs but we need greater reach to reflect all employers. Send your tips, articles or let us know your interest in becoming a reported to our communication team at michel.orlandosectionacs@gmail.com.
  • We officially launch the campaign for the Outstanding Entrepreneur/Employer Award. This award recognizes chemists, chemical engineers, consultants, or businesspeople aiming to expand the Private Sector’s chemical enterprise and to those private sector employers enabling chemists and chemical engineers to earn their livelihood in Central Florida. More information can be found at our website.
  • Monthly Executive Meeting is open to members. The next meeting occurs at 10AM on Saturday 05/15/2021 via Zoom. If you are interested in joining, please do not hesitate to contact us for meeting link.

Subscribe to our community page, follow our facebook page, and check out our website for updated news, activities of our local section.

Programs Supporting High School Chemistry Educators

ACS-Hach Programs provide financial support for future and current high school chemistry teachers. Through these grants and scholarships, ACS carries on the work of the Hach Scientific Foundation Endowment, encouraging the development of high school chemistry teachers and improving the teaching and learning of chemistry in their classrooms.

ACS-Hach Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Scholarship – provides financial support (up to $6,000 for full-time study, up to $3,000 for part-time study) for chemistry graduates with limited work experience to obtain a master’s degree in education or teacher certification in chemistry. Apply by April 1.

ACS-Hach Second Career Teacher Scholarship – provides financial support (up to $6,000 for full-time study, up to $3,000 for part-time study) for chemistry professionals to obtain a master’s degree in education or teacher certification in chemistry. Apply by April 1.

ACS-Hach High School Chemistry Classroom Grant – grants of up to $1,500 for high school chemistry teachers to use to cover basic classroom or laboratory needs, fund professional development experiences, or support innovative ideas in chemistry education. Apply by April 14.

Are you late for the above opportunities or do you want to find many other programs that support chemistry research and education at all levels, visit the ACS Funding Opportunities page.

Note: This post was reproduced from the ACS Newsletter about Grants & Scholarships for Educators on March 23rd 2021

March 2021’s Newsletter

Hello Orlando Section!

In this communication, we want to bring some news about upcoming activities of the Orlando section to all members.

  • Chemists Celebrate Earth Week (CCEW): To promote the positive role that chemistry plays in the world, ACS established the Chemists Celebrate Earth Week public awareness campaign. This year, CCEW occurs on April 18–24 with the theme “Reducing Our Footprint with Chemistry”. The Orlando Section participates in the following activities:
    • Distributing CCEW 2021 Celebrating Chemistry:  Celebrating Chemistry is designed to engage and educate children ages 9–12 (Grades 4–6) in the basic principles of chemistry. The publication is available in English and Spanish and can be found on our website. We encourage you to share the publication to anyone who may be interested.
    • 2021 CCEW Illustrated Poem Contest: The Orlando Local Section is hosting an illustrated poem contest for students in Kindergarten through 12th grade. Winners of local contest will advance to the National Illustrated Poem Contest for a chance to be featured on the ACS website and to win prizes. More details and the Flyer of this contest can be found in our website. We encourage you to share the Flyer with K12’s students and teachers that you may know and to spread the message via social media.
    • Participating in Central Florida Earthday: We have secured our presence in Central Florida Earthday at Lake Eola (on April 25th, 10AM-4PM). In this event, we will distribute merchandises, materials about the Earthday and perform chemistry demonstrations. Dr. Titel Jurca (UCF, titel.jurca[at]ucf.edu) will lead this event. Please contact him if you could offer a helping hand.
  • We are seeking volunteers: We are actively seeking volunteers to participate/lead our local section’s activities and be appointed to several committees. This month, we focus on the two committees: Senior Chemists, Younger Chemists. Contact us if you are interested.
  • Monthly Executive Meeting is open to members. The next meeting occurs at 10AM on Saturday 03/20/2021 via Zoom. If you are interested in joining, please do not hesitate to contact us for meeting link.
  • Subscribe to our community page, follow our facebook page, and check out our website for updated news, activities of our local section.