12 Feb 2020
Melissa Larocque is a 2019 Canada Student Merit Award winner. She achieved this award for obtaining the highest standing of her class in the fourth and final year of her degree. Here is a brief biography of the winner.
Melissa Larocque is a recent graduate from the Chemical Engineering & Biosciences Bachelor’s programme at McMaster University. She is continuing her education at McMaster University in the Master of Applied Science program, supervised by Dr. David Latulippe and Dr. Charles de Lannoy.
Throughout her undergraduate career, Melissa excelled academically, consistently earning a place on the Dean’s Honour List. She spent two summer terms as a research assistant for Dr. Latulippe on two separate projects: evaluating a photoelectrochemical method for measuring organic contaminants in industrial wastewater; and developing high-throughput bio-separation techniques. These projects were an excellent introduction into the field of academic research and spurred Melissa’s interest in wastewater treatment.
She was awarded a scholarship from the Water Environment Association of Ontario for her contribution to water quality research. Melissa then spent 12 months working as a Co-op student with CH2M HILL, now Jacobs Engineering. She held process engineering and project management support roles for various municipal water and wastewater treatment projects and was recognised internally for her efforts. This was an invaluable experience for Melissa and gave her new perspective on applying chemical engineering principles in industry.
For her final summer term, Melissa returned to the lab working on developing novel conductive membrane separation technologies for industrial wastewater treatment. She has continued her work on this project as a MASc student and has presented her findings at the Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering (2018) and North American Membrane Society (2019) conferences.
In her spare time, Melissa enjoys volunteering for outreach events with the university, walking her dog and playing recreational piano. Melissa aspires to make a positive contribution on the environment and to society as a process design engineer.