Meet the NSW Group Chairs
Chair of Early Career Chemists
Erin is a researcher working to better understand the role of proteins in different types of cancers. She studied a BSc (Hons) at The University of Sydney majoring in chemistry. In between her studies, Erin took a year off to work in drug testing at The National Measurement Institute of Australia. She returned to the National Measurement Institute to complete her honours project on detecting performance-enhancing drugs in human hair.
After completing her degree, Erin joined the Australian Cancer Research Foundation International Centre for the Proteome of Human Cancer (ProCan) team at The Children’s Medical Research Institute as a Research Assistant. She later decided to go part-time and study a Masters-by-Research with ProCan and The University of Sydney.
Erin has been a member of the RACI since 2018 and joined the Analytical and Environmental Chemistry Group Committee in 2019. Erin also joined the Early Career Chemists Group (ECCG, previously called the Young Chemists Group) as a member in 2020 and as Chair in 2021. The ECCG is run by students and graduates of chemistry and chemistry-related degrees, who are passionate about promoting chemistry and networking with the industry. The ECCG organises chemistry webinars, industry site visits, social activities, and career events. The Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/NSWECCG) also advertises research opportunities, job openings and scholarships. The ECCG is always looking for new members so if you’d like to join, please reach out to us.
Outside of work, Erin enjoys socialising with friends, playing tennis and hiking. She is thankful that the Inner West is a large local government area but is really looking forward to walking in some quiet greenery.
Chair of NSW Women in Chemistry Group
Amandeep (@Amandeepk28) grew up in India and completed her MSc. Chemistry (University Medal) from VIT University, India and a research internship at SIGMA Clermont, France, before moving to the University of Sydney in 2013 with a USyd World Scholar’s PhD Scholarship. In 2016, she completed her PhD at the University of Sydney, with Prof. Elizabeth New, during which she worked on the design and synthesis of reversible fluorescent redox sensors for understanding the role of oxidative stress in physiology and pathology. She then moved to the Single Molecule Science Node at the University of New South Wales as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow. During her postdoctoral research, she developed a strong expertise in imaging biological phenomena with high spatio-temporal resolution utilising cutting-edge imaging technologies. She then returned to the University of Sydney, being awarded the prestigious University of Sydney Fellowship. She currently is an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Research Award Fellow at the School of Medical Sciences at the University of Sydney, leading an interdisciplinary research group that focusses on development of chemical sensors for super-resolution imaging applications.
Amandeep has been a member of the RACI since 2013, when she was a PhD student. She has recently been elected as the Chair of the NSW Women in Chemistry Group (@wic_nsw), following her service as the treasurer for the group. She is committed to supporting early-career researchers and female researchers through the organisation of networking and career-progression opportunities. Amandeep is also the 2021/2022 RACI NSW Nyholm Youth Lecturer and passionately contributes to dissemination of science through lectures to high school students in NSW and conducting workshop for The Science Teachers Association, which demonstrates her commitment towards community development and dissemination of science.
In the NSW Women in Chemistry Group (@wic_nsw), we are passionate about cultivating networking and mentorship opportunities for women in chemistry and related areas of science. We are currently looking to elect for the treasurer’s role and if you are keen, please get in touch. In addition to other events, we organise the IUPAC Global Women’s Breakfast in February every year. We are always keen to connect with new members who are passionate about supporting women in all stages and types of chemistry careers.
Chair of Riverina-Murray Group
Dr Lachlan Schwarz is lecturer in Chemistry at Charles Sturt University (CSU) and divides his time between his teaching and research activities. Lachlan studied Science at the University of Newcastle, NSW Australia, majoring in Chemistry. He graduated with a BSc(Hons) and after post graduate studies in analytical chemistry, he was awarded a PhD for his work on the design and synthesis of molecularly imprinted polymers for the selective recognition of compounds associated with off-flavours in wine.
Following his PhD studies, he moved into industry and was employed as Chief Chemist for Bluetongue Brewery, where he managed the analytical and quality control laboratory. Later, he took up a team leader position at Amdel Environmental Laboratories before returning to academia at Monash University to undertake a Post-Doctoral position with the Centre for Green Chemistry researching the separation of bioactive compounds in food waste.
Lachlan came to CSU in 2014 to conduct research at the National Wine and Grape Research Institute before taking up a lecturing position in the School of Agriculture and Wine Science. Lachlan’s research interests continue to lie within the application of analytical separations and molecular imprinting technology to indigenous foods, functional foods and wine and grape research.
Lachlan is the current Chair of the NSW Riverina-Murray Section, which aims to connect those within industry and academia, particularly those based in the Riverina and Murray regions, through networking events. We are also passionate about fostering a love for science in the younger generations through engagement of the Section with the local and regional secondary education institutions.