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Very Employable Person (VEP) – Erin Ussery


Name: Erin Ussery Contact email: Erin.Ussery@uoit.ca Degree: Ph.D. Applied Bioscience Program Title of Thesis: The ecotoxicological effects of metformin and its metabolite, guanylurea, on Japanese medaka (Oryzias latipes) Institution and Advisor: University of Ontario Institute of Technology Advisor: Douglas Holdway, PhD Graduation Date: Summer 2018 Career Goals: My first love is research, with teaching very close behind. A career that incorporates both would be an absolute dream. I would also love opportunities to be involved in science outreach/education in some capacity. Connection with Laurentian SETAC: I joined SETAC NA during my M.Sc., and while attending the 2016 SETAC NA conference in Orlando, I met Rick Frank who introduced me to the Laurentian SETAC Chapter through a very early morning (and delicious) breakfast. After attending the breakfast, I joined the Laurentian Chapter and have been a member ever since. I joined the AGM committee last summer to help plan the conference at UOIT, and I've continued on the AGM committee for this year's at Queen's University. I was also member of the South-Central Chapter of SETAC during my M.Sc. at the University of North Texas. Accomplishment I am most proud of: Moving from Texas to Canada has been an amazing experience. I am really proud of myself for taking such a big risk. It has helped me learn that I'm pretty adaptable. Big cheese I would most like to have a drink with: Carolyn Miles. She is the president and CEO of the Save the Children Foundation. I’m sure she has wonderful stories, tons of life advice, and no doubt a heart of gold. Most people won’t guess that I: I love all things haunted and ghost. I love being scared. I've looked up things to do in Kingston during the AGM and I’m excited about that haunted tours through Kingston and the prisons! Best laugh I had during my degree: During my MSc, we were doing trout injections and a lab-mate of mine was retrieving the fish from the tanks. One fish in particular was hard to get a hold on and kept slipping through his hand which resulted in him getting repeatedly hit in the face by the tail of a trout. A big one too. I can brag that I have rubbed shoulders with: Danica Patrick, part of the GoDaddy IndyCar Race Team. Girl is FAST. Best weird science moment: One of our apparently VERY hungry American Flagfish decided that the Teflon tape scrap hanging from a standpipe looked appealing and started to eat it as a snack. Unfortunate for the fish, as the tape could be seen entering its mouth and coming out of the other end, essentially turning himself into an underwater kite. Most memorable conference I have been to during my degree was: My first CEW was this year and I was amazed at how inclusive it was. Everyone from ‘big cheeses’ to new students interact so well. I was also pleasantly shocked at how much fun at the post banquet dance party with live music by the Test Icicles. My graduate experience was more than just a degree because: I realized that I can overcome imperfections and failing. Graduate school has allowed me to realize the importance of perseverance. I have also made wonderful friends through all of my graduate school experiences. Other affiliations: International Water Association Young Water Professionals

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