About the Head of Chemistry Department
Dawn I. Fox, Ph.D., born in Bartica, Guyana is a Lecturer in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Guyana. Her overarching research interest is in converting local materials, especially waste materials, into value-added materials to solve environmental problems. Dr. Fox earned her Bachelor of Science in Chemistry at the University of Guyana in 1997 where she graduated as the salutatorian. She was the recipient of a Commonwealth Scholarship and went on to study for a Master of Chemical & Materials Engineering at the University of Auckland in Auckland, New Zealand. She returned to her home university and taught for five years and completed a post-graduate Diploma in Education, before starting her doctoral studies. In 2011, she graduated with a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of South Florida (USF), in Tampa, Florida, USA. This was largely made possible by a highly competitive and prestigious Faculty for the Future grant from the Schlumberger Foundation. Dr. Fox has since returned to teaching and research at her first alma mater. She uses locally available and natural materials to make filters and sorbents for improving water quality. She has extensive experience in characterising sorbents with microscopy and spectroscopy, water and wastewater treatment, and water quality analysis. She and her undergraduate students made aqueous phase sorbents using a variety of materials local to Guyana, including waste sawdust, coconut shell, and rice husk. She also worked on composite building materials, substituting chipped waste plastic for sand in concrete mixtures. She is currently working on a household water treatment filter made entirely from recycled and locally available materials which can be deployed in vulnerable communities and emergency situations. This work was funded by successfully competing for a University of Guyana Science & Technology Support Programme grant in the sum of USD21817. Dr. Fox teaches Chemical Thermodynamics, Inorganic Chemistry and Analytical Chemistry in her department’s undergraduate programme. She also supervises final year (capstone) research students in her department as well as in other departments and faculties. She is the current faculty advisor for the department’s student group UG ChemClub, formed to enrich the student experience through co-curricular and professional development activities. In 2016, she co-founded a group called Women in Science & Engineering (WiSE), to support, empower and advocate for girls and women to pursue and flourish in STEM careers. Dr. Fox has several peer-reviewed journal and conference proceedings publications, one book chapter, holds two patents and has given numerous oral presentations at national and international conferences. In 2018 she became the first Guyanese to be awarded the Organisation for Women in Science for the Developing World – Elsevier Foundation Early Career Award for scholarship and research in the Physical Sciences. On a personal note, Dr. Fox lives in Diamond with her husband Terrence and her step-son Kwame.
Faculty of Natural Sciences
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