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Volume 91 Issue 10 | p. 33 | ACS Comments
Issue Date: March 11, 2013

Partners For Progress & Prosperity

By Marinda Li Wu, ACS President
Department: ACS News
Keywords: ACS Comment, jobs, employment, entrepreneurs, globalization
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Marinda Li Wu, ACS President
Credit: Peter Cutts Photography
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Marinda Li Wu, ACS President
Credit: Peter Cutts Photography

Mattie J. T. Stepanek once said, “When there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.” Although this young prodigy passed away before turning 14, he made a difference in this world as a poet, peacemaker, and philosopher, leaving a legacy of a wonderful series of books called “Heartsongs” and a passion for his work. His story is especially touching to me because I share his passion for doing what we believe in.

I am excited by this year’s opportunities to explore how we can all become better Partners for Progress & Prosperity (C&EN, Jan. 7, page 2). My presidential initiatives support the need to explore global opportunities, strengthen partnerships to encourage innovation, promote advanced manufacturing, and create more jobs in science and technology to improve the general economy.

I look forward to seeing you at the spring ACS national meeting in New Orleans. It is wonderful that the meeting will take place in a city that so much reflects the theme of my presidential year: Partners for Progress & Prosperity. As a bustling port strategically located near the mouth of the Mississippi River, New Orleans is where global partnerships can be initiated and where prosperity and progress should converge.

The Big Easy—as some call the city—is famous for being a unique melting pot of diverse cultures, for being the birthplace of jazz, and for its Cajun food. It is one of those cities that come to mind when we think of people who have weathered difficulties and learned to turn challenges into opportunities—something I promote wherever I go. ACS members have long enjoyed visiting New Orleans for the society’s meetings. In fact, the spring 2013 meeting marks the 10th time ACS will hold a national meeting in the city.

With a theme of “Chemistry of Energy & Food,” the meeting will feature more than 12,000 papers, as well as a number of special events. As part of my effort to explore global opportunities, these events will include a presidential symposium, “Vision 2025: How To Succeed in the Global Chemistry Enterprise,” on April 8–9. The ACS Board of Directors and I will welcome 18 visiting international dignitaries from 13 countries or organizations at this meeting. They include 11 presidents of chemical societies from around the world who will join distinguished thought leaders from industry, academia, government, and small business, to speak at the symposium.

During the symposium we will discuss common challenges we face and how we can partner to better advance chemistry and serve chemistry professionals worldwide. Our goal is to develop solutions based on a diverse set of perspectives from around the globe. Our intent is to share the proceedings with scientific communities everywhere through an ACS Symposium Series book.

As part of my initiative to promote jobs, ACS will launch a program in New Orleans that is intended to expand job opportunities for ACS members. The International Employment Initiative (IEI) will bring international recruiters to meet job seekers at Sci-Mix on April 8 and the ACS Virtual Career Fair on April 8–9. Connecting job seekers with global opportunities increases potential options for members looking for new prospects.

The launch of IEI at Sci-Mix will coincide with introduction of the new ACS International Center. The center will serve as a comprehensive source of information about work, education, and travel around the globe. It can offer guidance for members wishing to explore jobs or exchange programs.

In the increasingly global chemistry enterprise, job opportunities—whether in teaching, research, manufacturing, marketing, sales, or beyond—can be found anywhere in the world. Because today’s job opportunities are global, empowering our members to participate in this global enterprise can be transforming. I have met many individuals who have reinvented themselves with second careers overseas, where their skills and knowledge have found new homes.

To remain competitive in this global chemistry enterprise, we must encourage members to view globalization more as an opportunity than a threat. Like it or not, globalization is here to stay and indeed is accelerating. My first priority remains serving our domestic members, and I am strongly advocating to bring both advanced manufacturing and research jobs home through regulatory and tax reform incentives.

During the council meeting in New Orleans, I will lead a special discussion on the topic “What else should ACS do to help members to thrive in the global chemistry enterprise?” Some of the more recently established ACS member benefits include ACS Webinars; ACS Member Universal Access, featuring 25 free downloads of ACS Publications articles; 25 free SciFinder research activities; new Career Pathways Workshops; the ACS Entrepreneurial Initiative; Sci-Mind online learning program; global ACS on Campus programs; and the new ACS International Center. The council discussion is intended to brainstorm creative ideas and possible innovations that the society could consider to build on what ACS currently offers members to thrive in the global chemistry enterprise.

My presidential Vision 2025 Task Force members will also be leading discussions with various stakeholder national ACS committees, divisions, and ACS Board and Council members in New Orleans to gather input and further refine recommendations and actions for 2013 and beyond.

We must partner to take action, so please join me in exploring new opportunities to build a better Vision 2025 for all of us! As always, I welcome your suggestions and ideas at m.wu@acs.org on how we can all become better Partners for Progress & Prosperity.

 

Views expressed on this page are those of the author and not necessarily those of ACS.

 
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