Mr. Lakdas N. Fernando (MS, Food science and Human Nutrition) Research Analyst (retired) Department of Food Science University of Missouri-Columbia USA

Institute of Chemistry > Alumni Spotlight > Mr. Lakdas N. Fernando (MS, Food science and Human Nutrition) Research Analyst (retired) Department of Food Science University of Missouri-Columbia USA

It is with such honor that I am writing about a program that changed the direction of my life. Just like many young adults who couldn’t enter the university system in Sri Lanka, I spent several years wondering what I wanted to do next in my life. Mathematics was my favorite subject and Chemistry was the weakest. I was very surprised when Dr. R.O.B Wijesekera, my mentor, picked me to work in his laboratory as a technical assistant. I started my career in 1971 working as a technical assistant at the natural products division of Ceylon Institute of Scientific and Industrial Research (present ITI). I was in the first batch of Laboratory Technicians Training Course (LTTC) conducted by the Institute of Chemistry, Sri Lanka in 1973. This Training Course was my first exposure to analytical chemistry. We had fantastic teachers like Dr. Janzs, Dr. J.N.O. Fernando and Dr. Ratnesiri. With the guidance of my mentor Dr. Wijesekera and the knowledge acquired through LTTC, I was able to function at a higher level. I discovered my passion in analytical chemistry after taking LTTC.  I am not sure how much the curriculum has changed from the program’s inception to now but I am sure the program has evolved. LTTC was a significant factor in changing my carrier from engineering to chemistry. 

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