ChemE welcomes new faculty member Daniela Galatro

""Professor Daniela Galatro (MIE PhD candidate) has joined U of T’s Department of Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry as an Assistant Professor, Teaching Stream. Beginning in 2021, Professor Galatro will be teaching courses on heat and mass transfer and data-based modelling for prediction and control.

Galatro joins the Department from U of T’s Department of Mechanical & Industrial Engineering (MIE) where she is completing the final year of her PhD. Galatro’s PhD research investigates lithium-ion battery aging in electric vehicles and second-life stationary applications under the supervision of Dean Emerita Cristina Amon.

Writer Amanda Hacio sat down with Professor Galatro to learn more about what she’s most looking forward to, how global experiences have shaped her career and how she will be approaching online learning.

Why did you choose U of T?

U of T is a world-class university that excels in quality education and research. It pioneers as an equitable and inclusive community that encourages both students and professors to reach their full potential.

As a professor, what advice do you have for new students?

Identify new challenges as opportunities, be creative, work hard, work smart, never stop learning, there is not just one path to reach your goals, and finally, be true to yourself.

What are you most looking forward to in your new position?

I’m looking forward to interacting with students, professors and staff from diverse backgrounds.

What do you hope to accomplish during your time at U of T Engineering?

Create innovative learning spaces and maximizing every student’s potential.

How have your global experiences shaped you as a teacher? What has been most rewarding about having these global experiences, personally and professionally?

My experience studying and working worldwide made me a global citizen and helped me find my place in the world. I studied and worked in Venezuela, I also worked in Germany and Canada. While working in Germany, I had assignments and business trips to several countries, such as the United States, Russia, China, UAE, Malaysia, Greece, Spain, and Turkey. I’m also a native speaker of Spanish and Italian, I’m fluent in English and I have professional working proficiency in German, limited working proficiency in French, and elementary proficiency in Portuguese.

Whenever I was learning or teaching about a chemical process, operation or engineering standard, it was not only about presenting, reading, and processing information or solving engineering problems. I looked at the world’s context around it — I analyzed the impact of my work on communities and the environment.

By learning languages and knowing about different cultures, I also embraced respect, tolerance, broke down barriers, overcame stereotypes, which ultimately shaped me as a person.

COVID-19 is changing the way students learn. How will you be approaching online learning next semester? What are you most looking forward to?

I will approach online learning by engaging with my students online, being both visible and available, as well as making the content of the course more interesting. I’m looking forward to creating a supportive, collaborative and exciting learning environment.

What is something most people might not know about you?

I play piano, I compose and sing my own songs for which I have won several contests. I love astronomy. From childhood to now I’m still fascinated by LEGO, from Star Wars to Architecture. I love all sports: I play soccer, ping-pong and bowling; and of course, I’m a Blue Jays and Toronto FC fan.