Annual Election: Meet the Candidates for 2023 Executive Committee

We are excited to announce the candidates for 2023 Executive Committee of the Orlando Section. Voting is expected to open on October 24th, 2022, when you will receive a separate email with the instructions on how to cast your votes electronically and will close on November 8th, 2022.

Dr. Nicole Lapeyrouse
Candidate for Chair

Dr. Nicole Lapeyrouse is a lecturer at the University of Central Florida (UCF). She performed her undergraduate studies at Florida International University and graduate work at UCF. At UCF, her research focused on the remediation of chlorinated compounds in aqueous environments and chemistry education. Dr. Lapeyrouse’s current research includes investigating student perception of teaching practices and their experience with unique multimedia, diversity, equity, and inclusion in STEM instructional materials, and STEM retention.

Dr. Stephen Smith
Candidate for Chair-Elect

Dr. Stephen Smith is a native of Central Florida and currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical and Chemical Engineering and Sciences at the Florida Institute of Technology. He completed his PhD in chemistry at the University of Central Florida in 2021. His research interests include synthesis of nanomaterials via industrially viable processes for applications as bactericides.

Dr. Pavithra Pathirathna
Candidate for Secretary

Pavithra Pathirathna is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical and Chemical Engineering and Sciences at the Florida Institute of Technology. She performed her undergraduate studies at the University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka, and her Ph.D. with Parastoo Hashemi in the Department of Chemistry at Wayne State University, MI, USA. Her postdoctoral work was at the University of Pittsburgh with Shigeru Amemiya. Pavithra’s interdisciplinary and translational research program centers on developing and optimizing electrochemical sensors for analyzing biologically and environmentally impactful metals and neurotransmitters with applications in point of care diagnostics. Some of her prestigious distinctions include Honor Citation for Teaching Service and Esther and Stanley Kirschner General Chemistry Teaching Award. Besides her scholarly and teaching activities, Pavithra has been serving as the secretary of the ACS Orlando section since 2021 and a reviewer and a co-editor of several journals.

Dr. Van Quach
Candidate for Treasurer

Dr. Van Quach has been the treasurer of the Orlando Section since 2019.  In addition, he is a professor of chemistry at Seminole State College.  He has been teaching there since Aug 2010.  He received his Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from the University of Florida in 1999.  After taking some time off for travel, he made his way up to Tallahassee, FL to start graduate school.  At Florida State University, his research focused on better understanding of the theoretical and fundamental processes that occur during chemical separation.  Specifically, he investigated the temperature dependence of the phase ration in liquid chromatography systems.  He received his Ph.D. in 2009 and taught for two years at FSU before returning to the central Florida area to teach at Seminole State College.  In his spare time, he enjoys cooking, reading, and drinking good wines.

Dr. Darlene Slattery
Candidate for Councilor

Dr. Slattery has been an active member of the Orlando Section since its inception in 1991, serving as Chair in 1992, 2002 and 2008, treasurer in 1996 and has served as Councilor since 2011.  She has also served on a number of local section committees, including the Awards Committee, which she has chaired for the majority of her time in the Section.  

As Councilor, Dr. Slattery has served on two National Committees, first on the Committee on Chemical Safety and since 2018, she has served on the Membership Affairs Committee (MAC), where she was actively involved in the development of the new membership model that resulted in new categories of membership and more pricing options.  As a member of MAC, she is also the lead for the Liaison and Caucus Working Group.  

Dr. Slattery is happily retired and looks forward to the opportunity to continue her support of the Orlando Section.

Call for Annual Awards

Since 1991, the Orlando Section of the American Chemical Society has recognized individuals who live, work, or study in the seven-county region of the Orlando Section and excel in chemistry. Continuing this tradition, this year, the Orlando Section will give the following awards:

  • Eileen Tulley Award for Outstanding High School Student
  • Outstanding High School Teacher
  • Outstanding Undergraduate at a Primarily Teaching Institution
  • Outstanding Undergraduate at a Primarily Research Institution
  • Outstanding Graduate at a Primarily Research Institution
  • Outstanding Educator at a Primarily Teaching Institution
  • Outstanding Educator at a Primarily Research Institution
  • Outstanding Chemist
  • Outstanding Chemistry Professional
  • Outstanding Entrepreneur/Employer Award
  • Outstanding Volunteer

Descriptions and criteria for each award can be found in our website at https://orlandoacs.org/annual-awards

If you know someone or companies who should be recognized publicly, please nominate them for an ACS Orlando Section award. Each Award consists of a plaque and a monetary award. Awardees will be honored at the local Section’s annual banquet held on December 3rd, 2022.  Student nominees need not be currently enrolled in chemistry but can be nominated for achievements for the spring 2022 term.

Nomination package includes:
(1) A letter of nomination stating why this person/company* deserves the award.
(2) A letter of support from someone else who knows the nominee.

Each letter should include the name of the award, and the writer’s email address and daytime phone number. Electronic submissions are required. Email PDF letters to Dr. Darlene Slattery, Chair of the Orlando Section Awards Committee at dslattery1@cfl.rr.com. To be considered, nominations must be received by Friday November 4th, 2022 November 9th, 2022.

Nominators of awardees are expected to participate in the local Section’s annual banquet to introduce the awardees.

* Point of contact for nominated company must be included in the letter.

2022 NCW Illustrated Poem Contest: Fabulous Fibers: The Chemistry of Fabrics

The Orlando Section of the American Chemical Society (ACS) is hosting an illustrated poem contest for students in Kindergarten through 12th grade. Entries must be sponsored by a local school or community group for verification purposes.

Contest_Deadline:Wednesday, October 26, 2022 at 11:59 PM Eastern
Local Prizes: One winner will be awarded ($50) for each of the flowing categories:
Grades K-2     Grades 3-5     Grades 6-8     Grades 9-12
The teacher who guided the winner will receive ($100) funding for classroom supplies.
Local Contact:Duy Le (submission@orlandoacs.org)
Submission:Illustrated poem and submission form must be submitted to https://forms.gle/WXhnVY9WPPZTzVWN7 or email to submission@orlandoacs.org

Winners of the Orlando Section’s Illustrated Poem Contest will advance to the National Illustrated Poem Contest for a chance to be featured on the ACS website and to win prizes!

How to participate:

Write and illustrate a poem using the CCEW theme, “Fabulous Fibers: The Chemistry of Fabrics.” Your poem must be no more than 40 words and in the following styles to be considered:

HAIKU  –  LIMERICK  –  ODE  –  ABC POEM  –  FREE VERSE  –  END RHYME  –  BLANK VERSE

Possible topics related to the CCEW 2021 theme include:

  • Natural fiber
  • Synthetic fiber
  • Chemical synthesis
  • Polymers
  • Dyeing fabrics
  • Hydrophilic
  • Hydrophobic
  • Properties of fabrics

Entries will be judged based upon:

  • Artistic Merit – use of color, quality of drawing, design & layout
  • Poem Message – fun, motivational, inspiring about yearly theme
  • Originality Creativity – unique, clever and/or creative design
  • Neatness – free of spelling and grammatical errors

Contest rules:

·   All poems must be no more than 40 words, and in one of the following styles to be considered: Haiku, Limerick, Ode, ABC poem, Free verse, End rhyme, and Blank verse.
·   Entries are judged based upon relevance to and incorporation of the NCW theme, word choice and imagery, colorful artwork, adherence to poem style, originality and creativity, and overall presentation.
·   All entries must be original works without aid from others. Poems may be submitted by hand on an unlined sheet of paper not larger than 11” by 14” or scanned and sent via email. Illustrations may be created using crayons, watercolors, other types of paint, colored pencils, or markers. The illustration may also be electronically created by using a digital painting and drawing app on a computer, tablet, or mobile device.
·   The text of the poem should be easy to read and may be typed before the hand-drawn or digital illustration is added, or the poem may be written on lined paper, which is cut out and pasted onto the unlined paper with the illustration.
·   No clipart or unoriginal images can be used.
·   Only one entry per student will be accepted; all entries must include an entry form. If the illustration is created using a digital painting or drawing app, the name of the program must be included on the entry form.
·   Acceptance of prizes constitutes consent to use winners’ first name, and entry for editorial, advertising, and publicity purposes.

Download this Flyer and submission form

Examples (2021 National winners)

National Chemistry Week’s event: The Chemistry of Fabrics

Join the ACS Orlando Section of the American Chemical Society and Orlando Science Center for a community event for National Chemistry Week and celebrate the importance of chemistry in everyday life! Learn about this year’s theme, The Chemistry of Fabrics, from UCF, FIT, Valencia College faculty and students with 10 exciting activities.

When: Saturday, October 22nd, 2022 (10:00 AM – 4:00 PM)
Where: Orlando Science Center

Annual Election: Call for 2023 Executive Board Candidates & Voting

We are seeking interested individuals to join the Orlando Section Executive Committee in 2023! We have four positions up for election: Chair, Chair Elect, Secretary, Treasurer, and Councilor. A description of each position is included below. Please contact Dr. Laura Sessions (lsessions@valenciacollege.edu), Nominating Committee Chair, with any additional questions.

All nominations (including name of nominee, contact information, and nominated position) must be notified to Dr. Laura Sessions (via email at lsessions@valenciacollege.edu) by October 14th, 2022. Voting is expected to open on October 24th, when you will receive a separate email with the instructions on how to cast your votes electronically and will close on November 8th . Please let us know (via email at contact@orlandoacs.org) before October 14th 2022 if you would like to be mailed a paper copy ballot.

ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

Chair (one-year term).  The main responsibilities are:

  • Two year commitment (one year as chair, one year as immediate Past-Chair)
  • Serve as Chair of the Executive Committee
  • Appoint members and/or affiliates to all committees
  • Oversee the activity of the section
  • To vote/participate in exec decisions

Chair Elect (one year term). The main responsibilities are:

  • Three year commitment (one year as chair-elect, one year as chair, one year as immediate Past-Chair)
  • To vote/participate in exec decisions
  • Succeed to office of Chair for the next year
  • Serve as chair for meetings which the Chair cannot attend

Treasurer (one-year term).  The main responsibilities are:

  • Prepare the annual budget/expenditures report for Nationals
  • Maintain the Section bank account
  • Maintain a budget, disbursements, expenditures, and accounting for the Section activities
  • To vote/participate in exec decisions

Secretary (one-year term).  The main responsibilities are:

  • To take notes at exec meetings
  • To set-up and distribute ballots for elections (mostly electronic now)
  • Oversee website and social media communications
  • To vote/participate in exec decisions

Councilor (three-year term).  The main responsibilities are:

  • To attend national meeting annually, represent the Section, and report back activities
  • Assist in preparing and submitting the annual report to the national office
  • To vote/participate in exec decisions

2022 CCEW Illustrated Poem Contest: Results

Winner of K-2 Category
Winner of Grade K-2 category (Local Contest):
Ranvitha Vivek, 1st grader from Heathrow Elementary School (Lake Mary)
Winner of K-2 Category
Winner of grade 3-5 Category
Winner of Grade 3-5 category (Local Contest):
Lakshitha Bhandari, a 4th grader, from Goldsboro Elementary Magnet School (Sanford)
Winner of grade 3-5 Category
Runner-up of grade 3-5 Category
Runner-up of Grade 3-5 category (Local Contest):
Aadhav Kumar, a 3rd grader, from Wilson Elementary School (Sanford)
Runner-up of grade 3-5 Category
Runner-up of grade 3-5 Category
Runner-up of Grade 3-5 category (Local Contest):
Mackenzie Gordon, a 4th grader, from English Estates Elementary (Fern Park)
Runner-up of grade 3-5 Category
Winner of grade 9-12 Category
Winner of Grade 9-12 category (Local Contest):
Eric Segrest, a 10th grader, from Lake Highland Prep School (Orlando)
Winner of grade 9-12 Category
1st Place of grade K-2 Category
1st Place of Grade K-2 category (National Contest):
Second Grader, Stonemill Elementary School, Chemical Society of Washington
1st Place of grade K-2 Category
2nd Place of grade K-2 Category
Second Place of Grade K-2 category (National Contest):
Second Grader, Capital Montessori School, Puget Sound Local Section
2nd Place of grade K-2 Category
1st Place of grade 3-5 Category
1st Place of Grade 3-5 category (National Contest):
Fifth Grader, Jumoke Academy at the Hartford Conservatory, Connecticut Valley Local Section
1st Place of grade 3-5 Category
2nd Place of grade 3-5 Category
2nd Place of Grade 3-5 category (National Contest):
Fifth Grader, Howard Drive Elementary, South Florida Local Section
2nd Place of grade 3-5 Category
1st Place of grade 6-8 Category
1st Place of Grade 6-8 category (National Contest):
Sixth Grader, Jefferson Middle School, Midland Local Section
1st Place of grade 6-8 Category
2nd Place of grade 6-8 Category
2nd Place of Grade 6-8 category (National Contest):
Seventh Grader, The Harker School, Silicon Valley Local Section
2nd Place of grade 6-8 Category
1st Place of grade 9-12 Category
1st Place of Grade 9-12 category (National Contest):
Eleventh Grader, Calloway County High School, Kentucky Lake Local Section
1st Place of grade 9-12 Category
2nd Place of grade 9-12 Category
2nd Place of Grade 9-12 category (National Contest):
Eleventh Grader, PA Leadership Charter School, Pittsburgh Local Section
2nd Place of grade 9-12 Category
previous arrow
next arrow

To promote the positive role that chemistry plays in the world, the American Chemical Society (ACS) established the Chemists Celebrate Earth Week (CCEW) public awareness campaign. Among many other activities, the Orlando Section of the ACS hosted 2022 CCEW Illustrated Poem Contest for K-12 students in Central Florida. The theme of the contest is “The Buzz About Bugs: Insect Chemistry.”

The contest received many entries from multiple schools. Thanks to the teachers who brought the contest to students’ attention.

Results of local contest:

Grade K-2 Category
Winner: Ranvitha Vivek from Heathrow Elementary School, guided by Amber Mash

Grade 3-5 Category*
Winner: Lakshitha Bhandari from Goldsboro Elementary Magnet School, guided by Mary Lynn Hess
Runner-up: Aadhav  Kumar from Wilson Elementary School, guided by Nicole Chavez
Runner-up: Mackenzie Gordon from English Estates Elementary, guided by Kelly Atterbury

Grade 6-8 Category
No winner

Grade 9-12 Category
Winner: Eric Segrest from Lake Highland Preparatory School, guided by Steve Math

The winner of each category will receive a certificate and a monetary award of $50. The runners-up of Grade 3-5 category will receive a certificate and a monetary award of $25. The teacher who guided the winner of each category and the runners-up of Grade 3-5 category will receive a school supply funding of $100 and $50, respectively.

The winner of each category also advances to the national 2022 CCEW Illustrated Poem Contest. The full results of national contest can be found at ACS Website.

If you have any comments or questions regarding the local contest, please contact the local section’s CCEW coordinator (Dr. Duy Le, duy.le@ucf.edu).

* Because Grade 3-5 category received a large number of high-quality entries, the executive committee of the local section voted to give two tied runner-up awards for this category.

Summer Social Event

We hope you have had a healthy and productive year so far and are ready for the official start of summer. In this bulletin we would like to bring to your attention an exciting summer social events that our section is organizing. To honor our 50th, 60th and 70th year ACS members and celebrate the 95th anniversary of The ACS Women Chemists Committee, the ACS Orlando Local Section is organizing a Summer Social Event

on Saturday, June 25th, 2022 
(stating at 11:30 AM)
at the Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant
529 N Alafaya Trail, Orlando, FL 32828

Apart from socializing, the award ceremony to recognize our senior members, we are very pleased to announce that Dr. Christina Drake of Kismet Technologies will give a short talk about the bacterial and viral transmissions in hospitals, a topic that is so important in the current COVID era.  

Also, this time the ACS Orlando section will subsidize part of the meal cost, so our members will have to pay only $25 out-of-pocket for a three-course meal. The location can accommodate only 42 people, so early registration is highly encouraged. Please follow the link below to register for the event. The registration deadline is June 15th.

Registration link: https://forms.gle/MJ2Z5ysTydFhwWqr8

Please don’t forget to subscribe to our community page, follow our facebook pageand check out our website for updated news, and activities of our local section.

We look forward to seeing you all there!

Best wishes,|
Dr. Denisia Popolan-Vaida
Chair of ACS Orlando Section
On behalf of the ACS Orlando Local Section executive committee

Younger Chemist Committee (YCC): Let’s ignite the hunger while we are younger!

The Younger Chemist Committee (YCC) of the Orlando Section of the American Chemical Society is established with a mission to advocate for, develop, and support rising chemists to positively impact their careers, the ACS, and the future of chemistry. We aim to build a community that will welcome budding chemists to seek guidance, voice concerns, and hone various technical and social skills. We hold with high regard the idea of networking and job-seeking and will organize events to reach those goals. The local section YCC works close-knit with the local section ACS making them unique from other clubs with similar goals. 

Starting in 2022, the Committee is led by Mohammed Muzammil Nishar Ahmed (Mill), a graduate student from Florida Institute of Technology. The committee is currently looking for interested individuals to help structure the board so that the club can get the ball rolling for its endeavors. The board positions include a chair, secretary, treasurer, engagement team, interface team, and communications team. If you or someone you know would like to contribute to the activities of the YCC, please connect with us via facebook or email us at ycc@orlandoacs.org.

CCEW 2022: Orlando Section at Central Florida Earthday

The Orlando Local Section took part in the Central Florida Earthday on April 23th, 2022 at Lake Eola (Downtown Orlando) to celebrate the Earth Week. This effort was led by Dr. Titel Jurca (Assistant Professor at UCF) and volunteers. The overall theme for our display was about “The Buzz About Bugs: Insect Chemistry”. Three posters were designed and used to support our outreach activity. The posters were used to facilitate discussion largely with teenage to adult age range visitors. The topics ranged from general facts/curiosities, specific applications to forensics, and a cross-over with materials chemistry and nanoscience and physics with regards to butterfly wings.

To engage younger children, we curated two activities. One was an arts and crafts station to create “chromatography” butterflies using coffee filters, water, and markers. This activity was very engaging with active participation throughout the day. Our second activity was a microscope set-up, as pictured below, and a collection of pinned insects donated from the University of Central Florida. This activity was perhaps our most popular with children of all ages and even adults often spending 10+ minutes looking at all of the structural features of the insects, learning about chitin, discussing color effects in butterfly wings, etc… Overall, the chromatography butterfly craft and the microscopy portion directly engaged and held a captive audience of over 150+ people throughout the day. Remaining passing engagement, discussion of posters/topics, presence of ACS in the community, and dissemination of pamphlets reached an estimated additional 400+ participants throughout the day.

The event began at 10 AM and ended at 4PM.

EarthDay2022_1
EarthDay2022_5
EarthDay2022_6
EarthDay2022_7
EarthDay2022_2
EarthDay2022_3
EarthDay2022_4
EarthDay2022_8
previous arrow
next arrow
EarthDay2022_1
EarthDay2022_5
EarthDay2022_6
EarthDay2022_7
EarthDay2022_2
EarthDay2022_3
EarthDay2022_4
EarthDay2022_8
previous arrow
next arrow