Katherine Villa, ICIQ Group Leader, was appointed as one of the ten distinguished new members of the Young Academy of Spain. This prestigious recognition was a testament to her remarkable contributions to the field of chemical research and the solid research conducted at ICIQ.
The official ceremony for the new members took place at the Paraninfo Rector Ernesto Martínez Ataz of the Rectorate of the University of Castilla La Mancha in Ciudad Real. With an open keynote speech by Javier García Martínez, President of Spain’s Young Academy, Gonzalo Arévalo, General Director of Research from Ministry of Science and Innovation, and Pedro Duque Former Minister of Science and Innovation, Villa was recognized alongside other researchers.
The Young Academy of Spain is a prestigious institution founded in 2019 by seven eminent Spanish researchers, all members of the Global Young Academy. This Academy served as a platform to champion scientific excellence, foster collaboration among young researchers, and inspire the youth to pursue scientific careers.
The selection process for Academy membership was rigorous, with a panel of international experts meticulously reviewing over 100 applications. Their evaluation extended beyond mere academic merits, encompassing factors such as multidisciplinary work, excellence in patent and software development, and grants secured, including the highly competitive ERC grants.
Katherine Villa’s appointment not only reflected her individual accomplishments but also highlighted the exceptional research being conducted at ICIQ, where she focused on advanced photocatalytic materials for energy and environmental applications. Over the past two years, Katherine capably led a research group at ICIQ and secured several competitive grants, including the prestigious ERC Starting Grant for her PhotoSwim project, BBVA Leonardo, la Caixa Junior Leader, among others. Her scientific journey had taken her to eight different research centers across Colombia, Spain, the Czech Republic, and Belgium, showcasing her international reach and influence.
“I am deeply honored to be a part of the Young Academy of Spain and to contribute to the advancement of science in our country. This recognition is not just a personal achievement but a testament to the dedication and commitment of the entire team at ICIQ”, Villa remarked.
Katherine Villa’s membership in the Young Academy of Spain underscores her dedication to scientific excellence. Her achievements serve as an inspiration for aspiring young researchers and reflect ICIQ’s ongoing commitment to pioneering research in the field of chemistry.