Unique Scientist: Anna Ampaw

Happy Mole Day! Let’s celebrate by highlighting a chemist! Time to meet Anna Ampaw (She/her)! Anna is a synthetic organic chemist and science communicator at the University of Ottawa in Ontario, Canada!

What kind of scientist are you?
I am a synthetic organic chemist but I am also slowly diving into the biological world. Although by day I work in a lab making molecules that can be used for biological purposes, I also love communicating science to the general public. I’ve started to research into everyday products that we use and communicating to the public the chemicals in them, what they do and how they can affect us. My goal is to make chemistry sound fun and interesting and for people to know that chemistry is all around us.

What made you want to become a scientist?
I wanted to become a scientist because I have a very curious mind and I love to learn about science. It’s a subject that I alway found super interesting. It also didn’t hurt that I was really good in organic chemistry. 🙂

“My goal is to make chemistry sound fun and interesting and for people to know that chemistry is all around us.”

Anna Ampaw

What makes you a #UniqueScientist?
I would say that the fact that I am a woman and specifically an African-Canadian women is what makes me a #UniqueScientist. It is a group that is very under-represented in science and specifically chemistry and I would love for that to change.

What’s something cool you do outside of work?
Outside of work, I love to be adventurous. I’m always down for an adventure, whether it be travelling, hiking, exploring, or trying a new food spot, I’m always ready to do something new.

If you had one wish and could change anything in science, what would it be?
If I could change anything in science I would probably change the way it is taught. A lot of people shy away from science because it’s “hard,” but even though it may be challenging like everything else in life it is something that is all around us. I think that showing how science is all around us and how it applies to everything in our life would make people much more interested in the subject.

“[The African-Canadian] group is very under-represented in science and specifically chemistry and I would love for that to change.”

Anna Ampaw

Who has inspired you the most in your journey to where you are now?
Many people have inspired me throughout my journey. People such as my PhD supervisor and the various women in STEM that I follow on social media.

Let’s end on a high note! What’s something you’ve done this week that you’re proud of?
I’m just happy that I made it through this week and was super productive! It was such a busy week because I had a grad course I am taking, I taught two MCAT prep classes, plus I had my own research to complete.


#WomenInSTEM, #BlackInSTEM

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