|October 29, 2016
CSM President Letter - October 2016
Dear CSM Members,
It is my great pleasure to serve as your President this year. My term began following the traditional passing of the hat ceremony from Chris Yost at the CSM Annual Conference that was held June 12-15, 2016 at the University of Toronto. Congratulations to Alex Ensminger and Trevor Moraes for organizing such an incredibly successful conference. Currently, Josh Neufeld and Laura Hug are planning an equally exciting and scientifically stimulating CSM Annual Conference at the University of Waterloo, June 20-23, 2017. Please mark your calendars and follow this link to learn more about the conference and to avoid missing any important deadlines.
As your CSM executive, we strive to engage our membership and continue to improve our Society. Our secretariat, Wafaa Antonious, will be contacting you with two voting opportunities.
At the Annual General Meeting in Toronto, the membership voted to amend the CSM/SCM by-laws to add a Post-doctoral Representative to the Executive Committee and to add a Committee on Microbiology Undergraduate Education. You will all have the opportunity to vote on these two amendments so that we can make the suggested changes to the current by-laws.
We also have two highly suitable candidates that have been nominated for the position of Vice-Chair in the Applied & Environmental Microbiology Section. These candidates are: Subba Rao Chaganti, University of Windsor and Steven Short, University of Toronto Mississauga. We encourage everyone to vote for one of the Vice-Chair candidates for the AEM Section.
The CSM has also made efforts to involve Microbiologists from every corner in Canada through the Student and Faculty Representative Program. These representatives are involved in the dissemination of CSM information and notifying members of opportunities for funding and influencing our decision makers. We request that all members examine the CSM Representatives list and contact our secretariat if you have nominations for vacant representative positions at universities, colleges, government organizations and other institutions involved in microbiology research and education that are not currently listed on the site. Please refer to the CSM website for more information about the role of the CSM Representatives and help us spread the word about CSM and joining the society that is working for them.
You will also be receiving a short membership survey that our Executive have prepared in order to receive more feedback from you on how we can continue to improve our Society of Microbiologists and the Annual Conference. The survey will be short and easy to respond to with 5 questions related to the CSM Annual Conference and another 4 on CSM membership and activities. Please take a few minutes out of your busy schedule to respond to the survey when you receive it.
As of October, the CSM member numbers are already at the highest that our Society has ever seen (641 total members: 294 Principal Investigators, 254 Students, 77 Postdoctoral Fellows, 13 Emeriti and 3 Honorary members). We are really pleased to see that our regular members remain loyal to the Society and renew their membership regardless of the conference location. And what is equally impressive is that the CSM has more than doubled its student membership (both at the Graduate and Postdoctoral levels) resulting in the large increase in numbers that we have observed this year. We hope to continue working with our youth to create a vibrant Society with a long future for succession - and relying on the wisdom and creative ideas of all our members to continuously improve the CSM. We also encourage you to take advantage of all the member benefits including highlighting your research on the Meet the Microbiologist page and listing free Job postings on our website in addition to reduced registration fees at our CSM Annual Conference, discounts in publishing articles in our society journal (Canadian Journal of Microbiology), and access to our member-only awards and student funding opportunities.
I look forward to an exciting year together!
Christine Szymanski, Ph.D.