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Community Forum in Chemistry, Spring 2012


Header for Community Forum in Chemistry
Windward Community College
45-720 Kea'ahala Road
Kane'ohe, Hawai‘i 96744

This project is coordinated by Leticia U. Colmenares Ph.D. Associate Professor in Chemistry - 236-9120. The forum is co-sponsored by Windward Community College and the American Chemical Society-Hawaii Section.

picture of Frederick Perlak“Sustainable Agriculture Locally and Globally”

Dr. Cindy Goldstein

1:00-2:00 pm, Wednesday, April 24th, 2012
Hale ‘Imiloa 111 (view map of campus)

If you ask a group of WCC students and faculty what sustainable living and agriculture mean, it is likely that a wide range of concepts will be shared. Come hear more about sustainable agriculture practices that contribute to reducing the environmental footprint of agriculture here in Hawaii. Information will be presented about crops that are being developed through plant breeding for different environments and regions of the world that allow farmers to be more sustainable and productive on the land they farm.

Dr. Cindy Goldstein is the Community Education and Outreach Manager of Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc. Cindy Goldstein holds a Ph.D. in plant physiology and molecular biology from the University of Illinois, Masters in Science in plant breeding and genetics from Oregon State University, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Horticulture from Oregon State. She joined Pioneer Hi-Bred in 2003 to increase community understanding of our plant breeding and seed production operations on Oahu and Kauai.  In her role Dr. Goldstein is engaged with many science and agriculture education programs in our local schools and with organizations in our communities.

picture of Frederick Perlak“Hawaii Laboratory Response Network In Action:
What we do to Protect You and the Environment”

Rebecca Sciulli

1:00-2:00 pm, Thursday, April 19th, 2012
Hale ‘Imiloa 111 (view map of campus)

IAs an essential component of the state’s public health system, the State Laboratory Division (SLD) plays a significant role in the assessment of health-related issues by providing specialized diagnostic and reference services in support of the health department’s mission to detect, prevent and control infectious diseases.  The role of SLD has expanded dramatically in recent years with the emergence of new pathogens such as SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) in 2003, West Nile Virus in 1999, and the resurgence of drug resistant strains of microorganisms and multi-drug resistant strains of M. tuberculosis.  SLD have a long history of participation in emergency response during natural disasters and in monitoring air and water quality. However, as the growing threat of terrorism has shifted the nation’s focus to homeland security, SLD have become an important and indispensable part of the emergency preparedness and response equation.

Rebecca Sciulli has been the Program Manager for the Laboratory Emergency Response program, (LERP) of the HI State Laboratories Division since 1999.  Prior to her current position, Rebecca worked as an Environmental Health Specialist for the Department of Health’s Solid and Hazardous Waste Program from 1993 to 1995, and then joined the Mycobacteriology Section of the State Lab as a Microbiologist in 1995. She received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Medical Technology from the Far Eastern University, Philippines and her Masters Degree in Microbiology from the University of Hawaii-Manoa.

picture of Frederick Perlak“What’s Really in Your Food?”

Dr. Frank Williams

1:00-2:00 pm, Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Hale ‘Imiloa 111 (view map of campus)

This presentation provides an introduction to an ongoing informational program that will educate individuals to the health problems and risks that accompany food selection in our modern society--Nutrient Toxicology.  Food additives and adulterants along with some of the adverse effects caused by these substances will be explored.

As a child, Dr. Frank Williams dreamed of one day winning a Nobel Prize.  His passion for learning and love of science eventually led him to Howard University where he entered their medical school at age 21.  After receiving his M.D. degree, he completed his Internship and Residency in Internal Medicine at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center. He was later certified as a Diplomate of the National Board of Medical Examiners and American Board of Internal Medicine.  He has served as an Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine with the John A. Burns School of Medicine at University of Hawaii and was later elected to the American College of Physicians.  Dr. Williams was a Certified Instructor in Advanced Cardiac Life Support with The American Heart Association for over 20 years. 

Dr. Williams educational focus is on the field of molecular medicine and its related disciplines.  He has a particular interest and has received special training in Mass Spectrometry and High Performance Liquid Chromatography.  Dr. Williams is a member of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, American Chemical Society, and CASSS an international separation science society. Dr. Williams is the Executive Editor, Writer, Producer, and Director of The Hawaii Institute of Molecular Education Symposiums.

picture of Frederick PerlakAntibiotic Resistance and Wastewater Engineering

by Timothy Lum Yee

1:00-2:00 pm, Thursday, February 9, 2012
Hale ‘Imiloa 111 (view map of campus)

Since the 1940s, large amounts of antibiotics have been produced and eventually disseminated into the environment. Within the last half century, it is estimated that millions of metric tons have been released into the biosphere. With the increased use and sometimes misuse of antibiotics in clinical and agricultural settings, the prevalence of resistant genes is gaining, requiring the scientific community to have a better understanding of the origins and pathways of antibiotic resistance. While there has been a wealth of research conducted on the evolution of antibiotic resistance, recent advances have been made in attempts to better understand the mechanisms that drive this emerging concern. Some of these efforts include the role wastewater engineering has in the control or development of resistance genes.

This presentation will introduce the general use of antibiotics, give an overview of the typical mechanisms involved, discuss recent efforts made within the scientific community, share relevant pathways related to wastewater engineering, and finally call for further discussion, investigation and awareness.

Timothy Lum Yee, PE is a project engineer with HDR, a civil and environmental engineering consulting firm. He received his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and is currently working on his Master of Science in Environmental Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology.



What is the Community Forum in Chemistry?  

• Its goal is to increase learning in chemistry for all students (and community members).

• A practicing professional discusses a chemistry related topic that is relevant to everyday lives.

• During the forum audience participate by asking questions, sharing views and comments.

• Serves as a bridge between classroom and real-world applications.

Picture of people doing chemistry

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Co-sponsored by the American Chemical Society
- Hawaii Section