Guyanese-born Dr. Suresh Narine is the latest luminary to be released in Trent University’s advertising campaign.
Launched two months ago, the campaign features alumni and notable professors. As the director of the university’s Centre for Biomaterials Research, Narine’s work involves the research and commercialization of green chemistry and engineering while building networks with other researchers and research bodies in Canada and around the world.
He also contributes to public understanding and policy development in toxics reduction, trains highly qualified personnel and teaches undergraduate and graduate students.
Named one of Canada’s Top 40 leaders under the age of 40 in 2011, Narine is delighted to be engaged in the campaign to enhance the university’s profile.
“Trent students have the opportunity at an early stage in their academic careers to be involved in projects of potentially significant impact on their environment and on commercialization of new business ideas which could additionally lead to authorship, patents and other career opportunities,” he said.
Narine migrated to Canada in 1991 to pursue higher education at Trent where he earned both his first degree and his Master’s.
He said Trent’s approach to learning taught him much more than textbook facts.
“I learned to think for myself, to challenge the status quo and I learned that solutions often reside in unconventional partnerships,” said Narine, who secured his PhD from the University of Guelph and was appointed Professor and Alberta Value Added Corporation (AVAC) research chair at the University of Alberta at age 27. “Without this approach, many of the successes I have counted in my life would not have been possible.”
Narine, who was the founding director of the Alberta Lipid Utilization Research Program, returned to Trent four years ago as Professor of Physics, Astronomy and Chemistry and in 14 months built the university’s state-of-the-art 7,000 square foot biomaterials research centre that focuses on the creation of petro-chemical replacements and biomaterials from lipids.
He was instrumental in the university signing a letter of intent with Guyana’s Institute of Applied Sciences & Technology (IAST) to promote technology development, the utilization of natural resources and graduate training in the only English-speaking country in South America.
With the blessings of the University of Alberta – where he was one of four AVAC chairs at the time – and Trent University, Narine accepted a Guyana presidential appointment eight years ago to become the IAST director. In that role in which he spends a few days in Guyana monthly, he introduced biodiesel technology and set up a commercial-viable biodiesel production facility in Guyana’s hinterland.
BY RON FANFAIR