Upcoming Lecture: Dr. Stephanie MacQuarrie

WICTO is proud to host another speaker this month, Dr. Stephanie MacQuarrie. Below, you will find information of the date and time as well as her abstract for the talk. Later on in the day, we will also be hosting a round-table discussion with Dr. MacQuarrie on the challenges of being a women in the field and how to overcome them. If you are interested in attending the discussion, please email us at womeninchemto@gmail.com. Please RSVP by January 15, 2016 as space is limited for the round-table discussion and on a first-come-first-serve basis.

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Speaker: Dr. Stephanie MacQuarrie

Date: Tuesday, Jan. 19th, 2016

Location: Lash Miller Rm 158 (University of Toronto, St. George Campus)

Time: 10 a.m.

“How Homogeneous Are These Heterogeneous Organic Catalysts?”

Abstract: The development of an efficient, convenient and recyclable catalytic system based on a supported organocatalyst is still a major challenge. The search for a green catalyst, and our interest in the synthesis of porous silica based materials prompted us to explore an alternative immobilization method, in which a chiral imidazolium salt derived from trans-L-hydroxyproline, is immobilized on the surface of mesoporous silica so that the imidazolium cation is covalently linked to the silica, but the proline anion is bound via electrostatic interactions. We suspect this allows the proline more freedom to react in the solution state, making it more available to participate in catalysis resulting in higher activity then past heterogeneous proline catalysts have shown.  We report excellent isolated yields in the aldol condensation reaction (up to 99%), as well as modest selectivities (ee up to 85%).  The stability and sustained activity of the catalyst were investigated and the results show that no loss of catalyst activity was found, even after five recoveries (washing & drying) and recycles. The NHC-based material demonstrated intriguing carbon dioxide capture ability.


Round-Table Discussion: “When Your Best is Their Worst”

Date: Tuesday, Jan, 19th, 2016

Time: 1:30 p.m.

Location: Lash Miller, Rm 128

Overview: In conversations with young women, a subject that comes up over and over is the question of whether a career in science is compatible with having a family. I was in my mid-20’s, married a few years, on a path to a great career as a Chemistry Professor – seemed like a great time to start a family, right? My Ph.D. supervisor did not agree. Over the next nine months I received plenty of (unsolicited) advice like “you should consider a different career – you’ll need to publish so much and with kids that will be impossible!” and “how do you expect to be a chemist and raise kids”. This was only 10 years ago. Significant advancements have been made in the last 10 years, more programs are being developed, and more information is available to help women early in their careers balance work and life and more research is being done to figure out why we are still seeing such low numbers in many areas of STEM. I don’t have all the answers, but I am excited to share my story about becoming a happy Chemistry Professor and Mom to three kids under 10 that can name more elements on the periodic table than many first years Chemistry Students can.

More Information on Stephanie MacQuarrie (Click here)


About womeninchemto

Women in Chemistry, Toronto Chapter (WICTO) is student-run initiative started in 2014 to promote gender diversity within the chemistry community through awareness, engagement and advocacy.