To members of the North Jersey Section:

Miriam Gulotta

Becoming the 2018 Chair of the North Jersey Section of the American Chemical Society (NJACS) is an immense honor as well as a daunting responsibility. First, I want to thank all the people who participate in NJACS topical groups, symposia, SEED mentors/mentees, College Chapters, the Chemistry Olympiad, the Chemistry Olympics, ChemExpo and all the other NJACS involved events. It’s you who are both the face and the strength of our section.

As a teacher, I view the world as a field of educational opportunities and being the chair of the NJ-ACS gives me the opportunity to encourage our over 4000 members to take full advantage of their NJ-ACS membership. I encourage you to

  • Increase and update your knowledge by participating in technical topical groups including chromatography, mass spectroscopy, drug metabolism and organic chemistry and by attending scientific symposia like the upcoming Baekeland Symposium on December 8.
  • Learn new ideas and discuss implementing the new standards by Interacting with other high school teachers by joining the teacher affiliates group, the American Association of Chemistry Teachers (AACT) and attending ChemTag meetings.
  • Join a College level student chapter or high school club or agree to speak at one of their events or become a chemistry coach with a teacher.
  • Bring your kids or someone else’s to ChemExpo to celebrate National Chemistry Week (October).
  • Mentor an economically disadvantaged high school student in your lab through project SEED or introduce younger kids from economically disadvantaged school districts to science through Community Nights at the Liberty Science Center.
  • Become a judge and advise some great high school students at the NJIT Chemistry Olympics or become involved with the International Chemistry Olympiad.

My background with the ACS and my goals have always been and continue to be for greater outreach. I have two goals for my time as your chair:

  1. Outreach from within. There were 4317 eligible voters in this year’s NJACS election but only 11.7% or 507 people took the time to vote. Only a fraction of that group are members of topical groups and/or are participants in other 2017 events. If every active member could bring one nonactive member to an event we could vastly increase our ability to fulfill our mission: to advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of our communities. In 2018 I want to see increases in both active members and voters.
  2. Outreach to economically disadvantaged communities: My involvement in education and outreach indicates that these kids lack opportunities and mentors but not enthusiasm or aptitude for science. In 2018, I want to initiate a relationship between NJACS and a Boys and Girls Club in one of these areas and to hold at least 1 lesson there.

Thanks to everyone in NJACS for giving me this amazing opportunity to serve. If you are interested in the NJACS and want direction on how to proceed or if you have any ideas or suggestions for us please contact me at mgulotta@www.njacs.org.

Dr. Miriam Gulotta
2018 Chair, North Jersey Section ACS

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