Nanotech guru Paula Hammond's advice for early-career chemists.
As a reporter for C&EN, I've been contributing to the magazine's Talented 12 program since it began in 2015. So, too, has Paula Hammond.
The very first call I made to start reporting on my inaugural Talented 12 profile was to Hammond, head of the Department of Chemical Engineering at MIT. You won't see her name in the bylines or other credits for our annual profiles of a dozen dazzling early-career chemists. But Hammond has been donating her time to C&EN behind the scenes, nominating scientists and making sure we understand the full extent of their contributions to chemistry as researchers, leaders, and mentors.
So it was fitting that on Monday morning, she kicked off this year's Talented 12 symposium at the ACS national meeting in San Diego. Hammond shared her journey as an independent researcher, designing polymers and particles at the nanoscale to help humanity. She's made materials to help wounded soldiers, as well as patients in their fights against cancer. Along with her scientific journey, Hammond also reflected on the people, opportunities, and mind-set that have enabled her success.
If you weren't among the attendees in the packed conference hall listening to Hammond, I'm excited to say: we've got you covered. C&EN broadcast the address on Facebook Live, and you can head to our Facebook page right now (or whenever is most convenient for you) to watch Hammond's presentation on demand.
I won't give too much away. No one shares Paula Hammond's wisdom better than Paula Hammond. But I did want to emphasize how she began her talk, reflecting on "the kinds of people you want to keep in your life or add to your life as you move forward." Hammond is that kind of person for countless chemists and many of us here at C&EN. I think it will be clear why once you watch the video.—Matt Davenport
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