Sekisui Specialty Chemicals (SSC) recently participated in the 9th Annual Applied Polymer Technology Extension Consortium (APTEC) Symposium hosted by Southeastern Louisiana University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. SSC has been a long-term supporter of APTEC, with Brad Wurm, head of SSC R&D, serving as a long standing board member of the organization.

Two of the Sekisui team participated in the career panel, giving undergraduate and graduate students the opportunity to ask questions of a diverse group of professionals. Dr. Drew Poche, Analytical Chemist, and Uzma Shah, Technical Service Specialist, joined a patent lawyer, graduate student and startup founder, and chemist to answer a variety of questions from attendees.

Most of the questions concerned employment after education and what made each person decide on their professional path, with some students questioning whether they should pursue graduate degrees or doctorates. ‘I have always felt that I belonged in my positions across my career and I have always felt respected by my peers, PhD holding or not,’ said Uzma Shah.  ‘The beauty of being an organization is diversity in all aspects of the word, including education level.’

APTEC’s annual consortium symposium provides students, faculty, and companies a setting to network and share ideas. Students have the opportunity to display research posters and mingle with professionals working in industry.  Sekisui has found several bright interns and employees through the APTEC program and aims to continue the relationship for 2023.