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Comment: Participate, get involved, and join in the fun of chemistry and ACS!

by Judith C. Giordan, ACS president
March 4, 2023 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 101, Issue 8


A photo of Judith C. Giordan.
Credit: Linda Wang
Judith C. Giordan

par·tic·i·pate /pär'tisə,pāt/ to take part in an action or endeavor; to be involved in or to share in.


No matter who we are or what stage of our career, we all want connections with others to learn, grow, gain broader perspectives, minimize biases, and just have FUN!

But making meaningful connections and finding time to do it can be challenging. For all of us, there are so many things we need to do each day—for family, work, school—or just trying to keep our head above water. Yet for many of us, some of our best connections and friendships have come through a favorite professional society, one that resonates the most with who we are and what we do.

Please join in any way you can because we can accomplish more if we’re all in this together.

For those of us who are trained in and who have dedicated our lives to the chemistry enterprise—in whatever way—there are so many reasons to be involved with and participate in the American Chemical Society—ACS. Maybe you are a member of ACS for the connections, friendships, professional growth, or science. Or maybe you participate in person or virtually, internationally, locally, or regionally. Perhaps you’re a member of a division, committee, international chapter, or local section or navigating ACS on your own. Now that COVID-19 restrictions are relaxing, we are coming back together as a chemistry community stronger than ever with more ways to connect, share, and be involved. So please JOIN IN! Here are just some of the upcoming options.

JOIN IN ACS Spring, virtually or in person

Thanks to the work of the organizing team, there is quite a list of presidential events. Here are some examples. From the Kids Zone to fun events such as the front-porch street fair to great science talks, including the “Chemistry at the Crossroads” plenary talk and the “Fred Kavli Innovations in Chemistry Keynote Lecture” featuring Paula T. Hammond of MIT, there is something for everyone. Each day has options, including sessions and posters showcasing research at HBCUs, women in science, and chemists with disabilities. Other highlights to check out: a day-long session “Biorefineries at the Crossroads,” the Local Section Row debuting at Sci-Mix, and a session showcasing ACS divisions and all they do. There will be several Proud to Be a Chemist events taking place throughout the meeting. Be sure to write your name on the big whiteboard, visit the member lounge to hear about the ACS Strategic Plan, and sign up to make a video on why you are a proud chemist and ACS member.

Knowing that as science evolves and we learn more, we as scientists need to work to ensure all people trust the science and trust us, the scientists, who are doing the work. Join in the “Trust in Science” program, sponsored by me and ACS Communications. In this session, you’ll build a tool kit of communication strategies and take part in an experiential session. This session kicks off the first of many—stay tuned, this experience and others on trust in science and scientists will be scheduled for regional meetings and the fall meeting in 2023, as well as online.

For more details on all programming for presidential and presidential-recommended events, check out Also see the ad on the inside back cover of the print issue for an overview.

JOIN IN the ACS Speaker Directory

Are you an ACS member looking for opportunities to share your expertise and build your speaking engagement résumé? If so, the ACS Speaker Directory was built for you! Gain visibility, share your experience, or grow your professional network by giving a talk virtually, in a hybrid format, or in person. Check out the directory at, or complete your speaker profile by scanning the QR code. It’s been an honor to work with the ACS Committee on Local Section Activities on this important career builder for members!

Thank you!

Whether you’re already involved in ACS or you’re just starting out, thank you. Please stay involved and find ways to help others to participate. For those wondering how to get involved, consider becoming a division member or becoming more active with your local section. Or to really dive in, apply for a role in governance. Complete and submit the committee preference form when it opens next month for committee assignments in 2024. You can also join (virtually or in person) the technical meetings in spring or fall, as well as regional and local section meetings and events. The options for participation, networking, and making connections within ACS are endless.

And truly, at ACS, our umbrella is large! All who care about the chemistry enterprise are welcome and needed. A strength of ACS as an organization and community is being open and inclusive, and we will remain strong when we all participate. So please join in any way you can because we can accomplish more if we’re all in this together. Because together we not only are able to envision the world we want, together we can build that world.

Views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of C&EN or ACS.


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