President’s column

Ngā mihi o te tau hou: Happy New Year!

Ngā mihi o te tau hou: Happy New Year!

The beginning of a new year creates a time to reflect on priorities and plans. So, here are a few NZIC items to note for the coming year. 

This year’s NZIC conference will be held in Dunedin during 24–28 November 2024. Being able to join our fellow New Zealand chemistry colleagues and support our student members and other early career chemists is a huge privilege and provides a local flavour and relevance that distinguishes this conference from overseas meetings. We look forward to seeing you there! Our education members will also be gathering in Wellington from 12–15 November for the ChemEd conference. 

I’m hoping to have visited all the Branches within the next couple of months. Thanks to Canterbury and Wellington for hosting my visits at their AGMs last year. I’m so sorry for not managing to arrange visits to the other Branches last year as I had originally planned and indicated – 2023 had unexpected challenges that derailed plans.

We will be holding an Extraordinary General Meeting in February, which we are hoping to tie in with Branch activities linked to the IUPAC Global Women’s Breakfast on 27 February. The EGM is needed to ratify decisions from the AGM in November, at which we did not meet a quorum.

Growing and retaining NZIC membership is a priority for the Institute. The Branches are where most NZIC activity happens. I challenge Branches to think about how you can encourage chemists in your region to get involved and join NZIC. We don’t want to turn non-members away from joining in our activities (making chemistry accessible to all is one of our goals), but consider whether there are ways you can add value for members throughout the year. What activities could you initiate that will excite folk to get involved? 

NZIC prizes and student travel grants are also benefits of membership. Branches are encouraged to hold membership drives early in the year so members can gain maximum benefits throughout the year. This is particularly the case for student membership, since eligibility for student travel funding requires being a member for 6 months prior to the application. 

So, let’s keep building on the growing momentum with Branch activities that we’ve seen in the past year to enhance the visibility of chemistry and NZIC in our communities! I send you my very best wishes for 2024.

Ka kiteahau i a koutou,

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Joanne Harvey

NZIC President 2023–2024

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