Joan Guillem Mayans, PhD student under the supervision of Prof. Antonio Echavarren (ICIQ), has defended his PhD thesis entitled “From Gold-Catalyzed Asymmetric or Photoredox-Assisted Cyclizations to Rhodium-Catalyzed C-H alkynylations” (assigned to the Analytical and Organic Chemistry Department of the Universitat Rovira i Virgili) publicly on January 21st.
The members of the evaluation committee were Prof. Diego J. Cárdenas Morales (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid), Prof. Marcos García Suero (ICIQ) and Dr. Fedor Miloserdov (Wageninge University).
Dr. Mayans is from Valencia (Spain). He studied Chemistry at the Universitat de València and after two years he moved to Université of Strasbourg where he finished his degree and did his master’s degree in Molecular and Supramolecular chemistry. He then joined the Echavarren group to pursue his PhD. He likes sharing his knowledge and he is passionate about climbing.
Why did you become a scientist?
I studied science because when I was young it caught my attention; I was good at it and, above all, it seemed like a very rigorous and tangible way of finding answers. Also, I saw that science would allow me to explore and learn things that would astonish me.
From the lessons learnt at ICIQ, which one do you value the most?
There are hundreds of lessons that I have learnt from these years. But one of the most important is having a good team to support you, with a good working atmosphere. In this way, any unforeseen events can be solved with teamwork.
What ICIQ moment you´ll never forget? What will you miss the most from ICIQ?
Without a doubt, the team performance of the song “Sofía” at the 2016 Christmas karaoke (epic win for the team).
What I will miss the most from ICIQ is the people who have accompanied me and with whom I have shared so much, my comrades-in-lab-coats.
What advice do you have for someone who’s starting their PhD now?
The PhD is a long-distance race, things take time and there are lessons behind every detail. Do not be in a hurry, maintain the energy and motivation that have brought you to this point and lean on the exceptional people around you, do not close yourself off.
Where are you going next?
I am motivated to jump into the outreach field, but at the moment nothing is clear. Time will tell.
If you were a piece of lab equipment, what would you be?
A safety shower: always there and rarely used, but when functioning it adds a very epic touch to the lab.