AETC ENGAGES ASPIRING CHEMISTS VIA THE AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY
In October 2020, AETC had the opportunity to engage with up-and-coming scientists by delivering a presentation to members of the University of Illinois American Chemical Society (ACS) student chapter. AETC employees Michelle Barsukov and Andrew Hartmann gave an overview of the company’s operations, described the responsibilities of an industrial chemist or chemical engineer, and described the types of technologies used for commercial material characterization. They also highlighted the differences between academic and industrial research projects and offered advice on applying to chemical research companies.
ACS’ University of Illinois student chapter hosts a variety of events, from hosting a series of lectures featuring chemistry and chemical engineering professors to running chemistry demonstrations for elementary, middle, and high school students in the Urbana-Champaign community. Briana Sobecks, ACS student chapter vice president and AETC intern, arranged the event with Barsukov and Hartmann as part of the club’s efforts to include more industrial chemistry-focused events. “When our club board decided to host more industry-focused events, AETC was the first company I thought of. I knew AETC would deliver a great presentation, and that they could give plenty of helpful information and advice for our members.”
The ACS members engaged well with the presentation. ACS student chapter president Ben Chiavini said, “I thought it was a great event, and it was nice to give students information about hands-on jobs in chemistry during a time where hands-on jobs seem in short supply. It helps keep students, especially underclassmen, positive about their college experience and future career goals.” Many other students found the presentation beneficial as well and connected with Barsukov and Hartmann for further information on AETC and industrial chemistry.
The AETC representatives found the experience worthwhile as well. Since a number of University of Illinois alumni end up working for AETC, including Hartmann himself, forging a strong connection with the students is a great way to support both their education and the company’s future. Barsukov is a strong believer in fostering this connection, “AETC is proud to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers,” she said. “Participating in outreach like this makes that possible.”
For more information on the University of Illinois ACS student chapter, please visit this link: https://acs.chemistry.illinois.edu/#what-we-do.