Current Members

Group members, Fall 2019


JoAnn Chen, Chair

Hello! I am a fourth year PhD student studying the physical properties of DNA in the gas phase. Outside of lab, I enjoy biking around the city, cooking, and grocery shopping. I hope that this year’s lectureship series highlights underrepresented groups, is educational, and offers opportunities for us to expand our networks.

Mireille Ghoussoub, Member-at-Large

Mireille is a 4th year PhD student studying Materials Chemistry at the University of Toronto. She received her BASc in Engineering Physics from the University of British Columbia and her MASc in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Toronto. Her research interest lies in the application of computational modelling and spectroscopic techniques for understanding CO2 hydrogenation mechanisms. Mireille enjoys being wherever is warmest (indoors or outdoors). She likes to go climbing and might have a twitter addiction.

Monika Satkauskas, Member-at-large

Monika is a 3rd year PhD student in the Wheeler group. She is involved in bettering life in the department by being an executive on the chemistry graduate student union (ChemClub), a member-at-large in Women in Chemistry Toronto (WICTO), and an active member of the UofT Faculty of Arts and Science Mental Health Initiative (Minds Redefined). Monika makes time for her passion of music by playing violin in the Etobicoke Philharmonic Orchestra each week. 


Ekaterina Slavko, Member-at-large

I’m a fifth year PhD student studying polymer chemistry at the University of Toronto. In my spare time, I enjoy reading and biking along the lake. I’m originally from Ottawa, ON.

Laura Stirchak, Secretary

I am currently a 5th year PhD student in environmental chemistry. My research involves looking at differences in the photochemistry of natural organic matter in freshwater versus sea water. Outside of the lab, I volunteer with the Friends of Allan Gardens and enjoy reading, photography, exploring Toronto and hiking.

Cynthia Suarez, Seminar Series Coordinator

I am a third year PhD student in the Jockusch group. The main focus of my research is to study RNA-drug interactions in the gas phase using mass spectrometry. In my spare time, I enjoy fitness classes, dancing and a good thriller.

Celia Ferrag, UTSC Representative

Hello, I am a 1st year PhD student studying in Analytical Chemistry at the University of Toronto. My research involves the synthesis of hydrogel polymers and their applications in the analytical field. One of my biggest passions is travelling because I love meeting new people as well as learning new languages and new cultures. On my free time, I like eating lots of good food and hanging out with my family and friends. I also enjoy dancing and doing exciting activities around Toronto.

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Racquel Edjoc, Mentorship and Outreach Coordinator

Racquel is  2nd year PhD student studying Organic Chemistry at the University of Toronto. Her research involves nickel catalysis to make pharmaceutically relevant motifs. She completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of Ottawa in Biopharmaceutical Science.  Outside of the lab she likes to enjoy nature, watch new tv shows, and play soccer.

Hava Friedman, Treasurer

Hava is a fifth year PhD candidate in Theoretical Chemistry at the University of Toronto. She spends most of her time developing the theory of open quantum systems; how a quantum particle interacts with a macroscopic environment. Originally from Montreal, she enjoys a good bagel. She joined WICTO because she is interested in promoting equity, diversity and inclusion in the physical sciences. In her spare time, she likes to spend time with her pup Babka, listen to audiobooks, and eat at different restaurants with her buds. She is really happy to be a part of the wonderful WICTO team! LinkedIn: Twitter handle: @haveenka

Mark Panas, Social Media and Website

Mark is a third year PhD student studying Environmental Chemistry at U of T. His research involves spectroscopic measurements of greenhouse gases on mobile platforms, mainly high-altitude balloons. He grew up in Pennsylvania and received a BS in Chemistry from Muhlenberg College. Mark has been a WICTO member for three years and has enjoyed the community and discussions the group has created. Mark enjoys spending his time painting, drawing, playing video games, drinking tea, and listening to podcasts.

Members At Large

Penny Le

Nimrat Obhi

Tanja Sack

Anika Tarasewicz

If you would like to become a member or an executive-at-large, feel free to email us at!

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