Wellington

The Wellington Branch covers the part of the Wellington District not included in the Manawatu Branch together with the Marlborough and Nelson Land Districts.

Wellington Branch Committee

ChairNate Davis
SecretarySteph Lockwood
TreasurerRalf Schwörer
Council DelegateRobin Fulton
Chem. Ed. Group RepresentativeSuzanne Boniface
Branch EditorRobin Fulton
Committee Member(s)Joanne Harvey
Luke Liu
Patricia Hunt
Emma Wrigglesworth
Joanna Dowle
Student Representative(s)Rose Hogg
Finlay Burke
Damon de Clercq
Matthew Brett
Fraser Hughson

NZIC WELLINGTON BRANCH CHAIRPERSON’S REPORT 2020

It has been my great pleasure to chair the Wellington Branch committee this year. It has been a busy and challenging year. The Covid-19 pandemic brought changes to every aspects of our lives and I’m grateful to the very talented and enthusiastic committee for their hard work and perseverance during this year.

The year started off well. We have continued with our weekly study incubator for undergraduate students, with food and drink sponsored by NZIC and in February we hosted the IUPAC women’s breakfast.

After this our activities where drastically reduced due to lockdown and the increased workload required to enable undergraduate chemistry students to learn from home. Our regular student run BBQ and chemistry quiz for high school students had to be cancelled. However, after lockdown we were quickly back to holding events and in July we organised a chemistry quiz night at hunter lounge. This event had a great turn out of academics and both postgraduate and undergraduate students. The rest of the year we were lucky enough to be able to host three different invited talks.

  • In August Dr Robert Keyzers, who was just recently made a fellow of the New Zealand institute of chemistry, gave a talk on Chemistry-led discovery of new natural products
  • In October Associate Professor James Crowley joined us for the Halton Lecture and talked about Palladium(II) metallosupramolecular cages: Self-assembly and molecular recognition
  • In November Associate Professor Sarah Masters came and gave her Presidential Address on Resilience and opportunity in career pathways.

All these talks were well attended and received. Notably the presence of some South Island researchers was a welcome change during the pandemic.

I would also like to again congratulate Professor Justin Hodgkiss and Dr Kai Chen for winning the NZIC Prize for Industrial and Applied Chemistry, which is a great testament to their work and the work being carried out at Victoria University of Wellington.

I close with a huge thank you to the 2020 Wellington Branch committee for their excellent work this year. Particular thanks go to Emma Wrigglesworth (Secretary), whose excellent organizational skills has kept this branch going, and to Ralf Schwörer (Treasurer), who has carefully managed the Branch accounts. I thank Robin Fulton (Branch Editor) and Joanne Harvey who both stepped in to fill the hole on council left by Suzanne Boniface’s retirement, in addition to their continued hard work. I thank and welcome new committee members Patricia Hunt and Luke Liu. To our student representatives Matthew Brett, Fraser Hughson, Steph Lockwood and Damon de Clercq, you have made a wonderful enthusiastic team and put a lot of time and effort into organising the many student events this year, thankyou.

We wish our members a healthy and invigorating summer and a rewarding 2020.

Dr Nathaniel Davis

NZIC WELLINGTON BRANCH CHAIRPERSON’S REPORT 2019

It has been my great pleasure to chair the Wellington Branch committee this year. It’s been a busy year and I’m grateful to the very talented and enthusiastic committee for their hard work.

This year, we have continued with our weekly study incubator for undergraduate students, with food and drink sponsored by NZIC. Due to the popularity of these, we had to run two weekly session.

March was a busy month with two social events. 1) A welcome BBQ for undergraduate chemists, which boasted a large turnout. And 2) a social function held at the Black Dog Brewery, where the head brewer talked to us about the different stages and chemistry of making beer.

In May we hosted the Mellor Lecture, which was given by Prof. Jim Johnston on the use of gold nanoparticles in textiles. For more details check out “Aulana®: The “Midas Rug” That Does Not Glitter”.

We continued our outreach events within the community, with the annual Secondary Schools’ Quiz night in June. It was really great to see our student members get involved in these outreach events, from showing kids how to make worms, to inspiring secondary school kids in chemistry. I would especially like to acknowledge our student representatives for organizing a great Quiz Night.

In July we celebrated the Year of the Periodic Table with a talk by Dr Stephen Ashworth titled “Elementary! A celebration of 150 years of Mendeleev’s periodic table”

In collaboration with the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) we hosted the RSC Australasian Lecture given by Prof. Keith C. Gordon from Otago University on “From ultrafast processes in solar cells to prediction of meat quality: using spectroscopy and computational methods to understand complex systems”.

The Wellington Branch has been active in funding and rewarding the successes of young people in our community. Student travel grants were provided to five postgraduate students, to attend the NZIC conference in Christchurch in November.

I close with a huge thank you to the 2019 Wellington Branch committee for their excellent work this year. Particular thanks go to Emma Wrigglesworth (Secretary), whose excellent organizational skills has kept this branch going, and to Ralf Schwörer (Treasurer), who has carefully managed the Branch accounts, Suzanne Boniface (Council Delegate and Chem. Ed. Group Representative) and Robin Fulton (Branch Editor) for all their work. Our student representatives Fraser Hudson, Matt Brett and Maggie Gao have made a wonderful enthusiastic team and a lot of time and effort into organising the many student events this year. Thank you to our Branch committee member Christoph Hasenöhrl, your ideas and help have been very much appreciated throughout the year!

As I am a new Chair this year, please let me know if you have any suggestions for activities for our members.
We wish our members a healthy and invigorating summer and a rewarding 2019.

Dr Nathaniel Davis