I am Shivali Banerjee, currently a final year student pursuing MSc. Chemistry at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi, since 2014.
My journey with chemistry started from simple high school experiments which were limited to Bunsen burners, pH stripes or a few test tubes. Now that I am about to finish my masters with much more knowledge about the world of chemistry, I still feel the same excitement that I felt back then. The subject has never failed to amaze me, right from my days of high school to even today.
In 2011, I passed class 12th with 94.33 marks and was among the top 1% students of ISC (Indian School Certificate) Board. I received the prestigious INSPIRE (Innovation in Science Pursuit for Inspired Research) Scholarship. To pursue a career in basic sciences, I joined three year BSc. (Hons.) Chemistry programme at Miranda House College of University of Delhi, one of the most prestigious institutions in India for undergraduate studies and research in pure sciences.
In 2012, during my second year in BSc. Hons Chemistry course, I joined my first one year long research project "Computational Modelling of Phytoregulatory Profile of some Nanoparticles (May,2012 to May,2013) under Dr. Sushma Moitra (Principal Investigator). The project was sponsored by the University of Delhi under the Innovation Project Scheme.
I joined Prof. T Pradeep as a summer research fellow (May-July 2013) at DST Unit of Nanoscience, IIT Madras. This summer fellowship was sponsored by the Indian Academy of Sciences. During the internship I worked on synthesis and characterizing of thiol protected palladium nano-clusters. The project gave me more insight into various characterization techniques like Electrospray Ionisation Mass Spectrometry (ESI MS) , Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionisation (MALDI), Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FESEM), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) and High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC).
I also earned a gold medal at the end of BSc. (Hons.) Chemistry course for securing highest marks in the three years of this course. I am an awardee of the URH (University Rank Holder) Fellowship sponsored by University Grants Commision. I qualified the Joint Admission test for MSc (JAM) and joined Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi for masters in 2014. I have been among the top three students in the MSc Chemistry course at IIT Delhi.
I completed my master's thesis project under the supervision of Prof. Ashok K Ganguli, Solid State and Nanomaterial Research Lab, IIT Delhi. My research project involves synthesizing a series of nanocatalysts for hydrogen-evolution by water splitting. While working on this project, I learnt to operate powder X-Ray Diffractometer, Thermogravimetric instrument, Infrared Spectrophotometer, Electrochemical set-up of a three-electrode system, etc. I also learnt the analysis of the electrochemical data, such as LSV Curves, Cyclic Voltammograms, Tafel plots, Nyquist plots etc.
I presented a poster on my work at MNIT Jaipur(2015), Rajasthan and another at the Australia-India Strategic Research Fund Meeting(2015) held at IISER Mohali, Chandigarh, India.