Lynsie Almeida graduated from Rhode Island College with a bachelor's degree in chemistry with a biology minor and started her career in pharmaceuticals.
She worked at AstraZeneca as a medicinal/organic chemist in oncology drug design for eight years, spent three years on the instrumentation side working as an LC/MS global service and support engineer, then was a lab manager and senior chemist in a medical marijuana testing lab. She joined Teknor Apex Co. and worked for three years as a senior analytical chemist deformulating plastics in the lab before becoming a senior global quality engineer two years ago.
Under her current title at the materials firm, Almeida is responsible for quality systems, such as monitoring product quality performance; quality policies, including implementation of ISO and other recognized standards; auditing, such as conducting internal audit investigations; and training employees on quality and statistical concepts.
"My interest in plastics was actually sparked by an episode of How It's Made, which detailed the process for turning plastic pellets into finished goods. I found the manufacturing process rather mesmerizing and fascinating in all of its intricacies," she said. "While I enjoyed the episode, it had me wondering, 'Well, where did the pellets come from and what's in them?'"
Prior to her career in chemistry, Almeida was a singer and was accepted to study at the Berklee College of Music.
"Chemistry isn't about just working in a lab," she said. "There are so many applications and parallel fields where chemistry can be applied. I have demonstrated this by having had five different careers all with the same degree."
Q: What is your current challenge at work?
Almeida: Resources, resources, resources. There are so many projects and initiatives that we would like to push forward that would pave the way for big change in the company. However, we lack the personnel and what personnel we do have is spread so thin there is no bandwidth for anything outside of day to day operations.
Q: If you were CEO of a company, what would you do first?
Almeida: I would consider my workforce and take a real, true heartbeat of the workplace. Learn what motivates people in the current environment and use that knowledge to drive progress, performance and efficiency in new and creative ways.
Q: What is the best advice you have ever received?
Almeida: Don't rely on others to steer your career development and advancement. Instead, forge your own career path and take charge of your future.