Faces of the IRCM – Christine Matte

Faces of the IRCM – Christine Matte

Christine Matte, Faculty and Scientific Affairs Coordinator
A passion for science  


NB: This series of encounters highlights the diversity of the members of the IRCM community, the variety of their expertise and the depth of their commitment to their respective roles

A warm and dynamic figure in Academic Affairs, Christine Matte carries out her role as coordinator with affability and competence. Anyone who comes into contact with her knows that her door is always open, whether in person or virtually. Christine understands the needs, concerns and questions of early-career scientists. She's been there, done that, having devoted 17 years of her life to academic research.

She has always had a passion for science. Fascinated by the world of microbes, the young woman realized after starting her career in the field that, although she loved the scientific environment, she didn’t feel cut out to remain in research herself. Nonetheless, everything that surrounds, nurtures and supports science is at the heart of her DNA.

In parallel with her time in the lab, she had many opportunities to sit on committees, participate in scientific events, evaluate scholarship applications and so on.

‘’I also helped revise the first-ever edition of a journal created at McGill so that summer interns could publish their work. I pursued every opportunity to get involved.’’

So when she came across the job posting for her current position with us, she knew she was in the right place.

‘’When I read the job description, it felt like it was ‘me’, laid out on paper.’’

Arriving at IRCM in June 2021, Christine immediately fell in love with the nimble, caring team that surrounds her and allows her to flourish.

‘’It's such a lively, stimulating environment, and I have the latitude to carry out my projects according to my vision.’’

From the coordination of multiple activities and projects to the organization of the annual Scientific Forum and the ambitious Science POP she developed at the heart of the pandemic, inspired by the creativity of the Scientific Life Committee, Christine's work is multi-faceted.

‘’It's a role that calls to me, and it's never the same. And with both the students and the administration, I feel well supported, there's always someone with a smile and a friendly pat on the shoulder. You don't feel the weight of hierarchy.’’

She has one piece of advice for scientists who are still finding their way in their careers:

‘’Science can also be a gateway to find out what you love, who you are... Graduate training is a long and often demanding road. But even if you then branch off and choose a career outside research, it will never be time wasted. You'll have acquired invaluable skills that will undoubtedly stand you in good stead for the rest of your career. Don't be afraid to do things on the side, to ask to take part in all kinds of initiatives. It's hyper-dynamic, nourishing and formative.’’

Thank you, Christine, for your flame!

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