The CEPA Committee consists of 13 postgraduate students from a range of research groups. CEPA meets once a month to discuss potential ideas for the CEPA calendar, and to allocate roles and tasks to ensure upcoming events run smoothly.
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Gabriel is a third year PhD student, working in the field developing biosensors for in situmonitoring within in vitro3D cell culture systems. Starting as a social officer within the CEPA committee in 2017, he has been doing various roles throughout the years. Outside of his research, Gabriel has a passion for helping those in need and giving back to the community, by contributing to various student societies throughout the years. Other hobbies that Gabriel enjoys are catching up with friends, playing video games, and baking. Previous volunteering and student organisations that Gabriel has been a part of include committee member (Treasurer) of WIRED Monash in 2016, Finance Lead of UNIHACK in 2016, Social Officer in CEPA in 2017, and President of CEPA Cake Club in 2019
Academic Vice President
Isaac is a second-year PhD student originally from Brisbane, working on computer simulations of polymers under Ravi Jagadeeshan. He was a general representative for the CEPA committee last year, and this year is taking a central role in organizing academic events and the annual CEPA conference. Outside of research and study, he enjoys reading, hiking, video games, windsurfing and playing guitar.
Social Vice President
Laila is currently a second year PhD student, having completed her Bachelors at Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET). She is currently working on a Graduate Research Industry Partnerships (GRIP) PhD project in the Department of Chemical Engineering, in partnership with Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA). Her research interest are absorption phenomenon, rheology, food and environment engineering, and product development. After completing her PhD, she hopes to carry on her passion for research by joining a university or working in an industrial R&D position.
Social Vice President
Shamseldin is currently in his second year of PhD, working on heterogeneous catalysis for sustainable processes and carbon dioxide conversion under Energy, Fuels and Reaction Engineering Research Group. His involvement with CEPA started during his first year of PhD as a member of the academic committee, but his volunteering work started earlier as he held different committee positions during his undergraduate and master level studies. Outside work and studies, he enjoys playing sport, traveling, perfumery and video games.
Mitra is in her 2nd year of PhD in the area of food chemistry. She is working on edible oils and encapsulation strategy under supervision of Cordelia Selomulya. Mitra’s work with food chemistry stems from her enjoyment of food. She enjoys eating different cuisine, which has allowed her to develop her cooking skills. If Mitra finds spare time, she enjoys sightseeing untamed nature through
mountain climbing. Also, she enjoys playing tennis, solving puzzles and reading novels.
Ankita is in her first year of Ph.D. program under the supervision of Associate Professor Victoria Haritos. She is currently working on the development of a secretory pathway in yeast for the extracellular secretion of recombinant proteins. Ankita has actively been part of different organisations such as: Microcosmos - Microbiology Society (Delhi, India) as a committee member from 2014-2015, and as a volunteer with the Swabalmban NGO in 2015. In her spare time, Ankita enjoys cooking and trying new cuisines. She also enjoys travelling. She has ticked a number of countries but hopes to explore more and is always on the lookout for a new adventure. Ankita also likes to be active and enjoys dancing, Zumba and body combat.
In 2017 Mr Maciej Adam Surmiak joined Udo Bach’s Research Group (www.udobach.com) to continue his scientific career working in Advanced Photovoltaics Laboratory at Monash University in Melbourne. His PhD research topic focuses on high-throughput perovskite solar cell materials discovery. Adam finished his Bachelors and master studies at Wroclaw University of Technology and Science. He is interested in chemical engineering, electronics, measurements/metrology, CAD and large scale high-throughput solar cell materials discovery. His hobbies are dogs (German shepherds in particular), riding motorcycle and part-time car/motorcycle mechanic-hobbyist.
Brian is a first year PhD student, at the beginning of his journey to a doctorate. He is pursuing research in bioelectrosynthesis; a technology that involves combining microbes (biocatalysts) with traditional electrochemical systems, to allow for the production of multi-carbon compounds. Brian is interested in the development of renewable energy technologies, with a particular interest in the advancement of bioenergy. Outside of research, Brian is interested in eating; enjoying the vibrant and diverse food culture that Melbourne has to offer.
Ed is a current PhD student under the supervision of Dr. Simon Corrie at Monash University, working to develop magnetic nanomaterials in biosensor applications. He enjoys playing an active role on in the community, having previously served as the president of CEPA in 2018, president of the Materials Engineering undergraduate society in 2017, as well as participating in numerous outreach opportunities to showcase research and chemical engineering to school communities and the general public. He enjoys a wide range of things, including sports, social activities, video and board games and live music.
Lavaraj is a third year PhD student in the Chemical Engineering department at Monash University and works in areas of novel food processing and by-product utilisation. He has continuously help and support CEPA throughout the years since starting in 2017. Lavaraj likes playing soccer and badminton, while in his spare time enjoys watching fishing videos on YouTube. He embraces diversity with heart and believes in the statement, “None of us is better than all of us”, and applies it everyday by doing various volunteering roles - helping those who are in need.
Maisha completed her Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering at Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology (BUET) in Dhaka, Bangladesh. She is currently a PhD candidate at Monash University, working on a project to incorporate bismuth based antibacterial agent into nanocellulose for the development of antimicrobial materials for various applications. Maisha is also currently a committee member of the APPITA Young Profesisonal Network. Outside of research, Maisha loves cooking and spending time with family and friends.
Rabi is a PhD student working in the field of sustainability, focusing on recycling of lithium-ion batteries for high-value products. Besides her research, she is interested in volunteering to gain and develop new skills and experiences. Her hobbies include listening to music, painting, doing exercises, nature and traveling. Some of her volunteering experience includes Committee member (Secretary) of CEPA in 2018, Executive committee member at the International Biennial Conference on UFGNSM 2015, and a Member of Materials Science and Engineering Association in 2010
Ruth Barajas Ledesma
Ruth completed her Bachelor’s degree in 2012 in Chemical Engineering at the Western Institute of Technology and Higher Education in Mexico. In 2018, she received her Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Melbourne as a first-class student. Currently, Ruth carries her PhD under the supervision of Prof. Gil Garnier, Prof. Antonio Patti and Prof. Vanessa Wong. Her research on novel applications of cellulose derivatives is part of the ARC research hub for Processing Lignocellulosics into High Value products (PALS). Outside of research, Ruth enjoys running and nature activities such as hiking and camping.