|Posted by Lee, Young-Jin on May 10, 2016 at 11:55 AM|
Newly elected, three-year councilor Javier Vela from ISU, and alternate councilor Maria Bohorquez from Drake, will regularly attend ACS national meetings to represent the Ames Local section. As per national ACS policies, the local section co-sponsors the councilor's travel to national meetings. Because many of the members do not attend the national meeting, the councilor will share the national ACS news with the local members.
Javier Vela's report from Spring ACS Meeting 2016 in San Diego:
I recently came back from ACS, where I had the chance to attend the At Large Councilor and District meetings. I also participated as an associate (observer) in the International Activities Committee (IAC) meeting. While several items were presented and discussed, there are no major news or changes to report. As part of the Councilor responsibilities, I will seek to enter a new national committee, since my IAC term is up. The call opens up in a few weeks from now, and specific openings will only become known at that time.
Some things that caught my attention:
- The at large meeting had about 500 PhD Chemists in a single room, and it lasted for over 4 h! Members of the audience could approach microphones and ask questions and offer suggestions. Among points that repeated often, people seem genuinely and understandably concerned about the anti-immigrant/anti-visa tone of some recent ACS initiatives and Committee reports, perhaps as an indirect consequence of the sad affairs of national politics. There were also repeated concerns about perceived discrepancies in the yearly jobs report; it appears that the statistics reported count only active ACS members who respond to the surveys, and people feel this greatly skews the jobs data.
- ACS appears to be primarily run by a group of very capable staff who, in many instances, are non-chemistry professionals. They do a fine job, in my view, managing such a large and successful scientific organization. However, actual career chemists, including elected ACS Presidents, have a more limited and primarily ceremonial role in running the society. Just an observation!
- From the International Activities Committee (IAC)3: There will be a new international meeting similar to PacifiChem, oriented toward the nations of the Atlantic. It's unclear if the conference will be called AtlantiChem, but it will be similar to PacifiChem, and occur every five years. The first edition is scheduled for Cancun in January 2017 or 2018.
I saw several of our students and colleagues at the meeting - including Kingston, who had a cold and had lost his voice! (hope you are feeling better)
Maria will be attending the Fall ACS in Philadelphia to represent the local section, and is serving in the national ACS Project SEED committee.