Luca Buzzetti, PhD student under the supervision of Prof. Paolo Melchiorre (ICIQ), has defended his PhD Thesis entitled “Photochemical Strategies for Carbon-Carbon Bond Forming Processes” (assigned to the department of Analytical & Organic Chemistry of the Universitat Rovira i Virgili) publicly on October 29th at the ICIQ Auditorium.
The members of the evaluation committee were: Prof. Mariola Tortosa (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid), Dr. Marcos G. Suero (ICIQ) and Dr. Daniele Leonori (University of Manchester)
Dr. Buzzetti was born in the small town of Morbegno, in the Italian Alps and did his bachelor and master studies in chemistry in the University of Pavia. In 2014 he joined Prof. Melchiorre’s group at ICIQ for his doctoral studies, during which he spent four months at the Scripps Research Institute in California under Prof. Phil Baran’s supervision. He enjoys running, skiing and brewing his own beer.
Why did you become a scientist? What would you want to achieve as a scientist?
I don’t know! I think everything started before I actually knew what a scientist is because I have always been fascinated by nature. Living in the middle of the Alps you just step outside your house and there’s a lot of stuff happening and you don’t know what is going on but somehow everything works. I think I already had the scientific curiosity and a scientific method for answering questions before going to school. In my head, I tried to make observations and give explanations to stuff, and by the time I got to school, science was already my favourite subject.
I think my generation (scientists included) will have to face global problems such as climate change and feeding and giving access to clean water to everyone. We are the first generation of scientists focused on this topic since the beginning of our education. As a scientist, I’d like to contribute to solving some of these issues, I believe chemistry is one of the sciences that can contribute the most to solve them.
From the lessons learnt at ICIQ, which one do you value the most?
This was my first experience of working in a big, international and multidisciplinary group. What I have learnt is that the key to success is to not expect the same from all the people working with you. Ask people to help you with the stuff they are best at, that’s an important lesson. I’ve had the chance to work with people from different backgrounds and they were all amazing at what they did, so I’d try to learn from the people around me because each of them taught me something different but still valuable.
What ICIQ moment you´ll never forget?
My second year we had a Christmas group lunch on a Thursday. On Friday we all showed up at some point during the day but we looked like zombies. At some point, we all met in the canteen and looked at each other and without a word we all decided group lunches would be on Fridays. But every day there’s something funny happening, I will really miss sharing everyday experiences with my lab mates.
Where are you going next? What will you do there?
First of all, I’m taking two months of holidays to rest, not think about chemistry for at least a week and, since winter is coming, go skiing and hiking. After my vacation, I will start a postdoc in organic chemistry, but I can’t give details yet!