Skills Learned at OSSM Prove Effective in Career
Finding a healthy alternative to sugary drinks is everyone’s hope, but for one OSSM alumni, it’s a career. As a manager for DuPont, Collin Martin, Class of 2001, is working hard to achieve that goal and is utilizing the life skills learned during his time at OSSM to do so.
Collin is the research and development (R&D) manager of DuPont’s Water Solutions business, a position he has held for more than two years. Headquartered in Wilmington, Del., DuPont is a $100 million annual revenue company that specializes in nutrition, food, dairy and fermentation business. Collin runs a global team that makes products to improve the taste and lower the costs of food and beverages. He began at DuPont in 2018 as a senior research scientist and R&D manager, and was promoted to his current position in 2020.
An avid mathematician, Collin came to OSSM from Metro Christian Academy in Tulsa. His math teacher encouraged him to apply because of the more advanced coursework. Collin credits the state’s leading public and STEM high school with giving him a head start in getting his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering at the University of Oklahoma and for providing him with the freedom to pursue extensive undergraduate research.
“When I left OSSM and went to the University of Oklahoma, I had almost 80 credit hours. This gave me a huge head start, helping me graduate in three years.”
Since he went on to get his Ph.D. in chemical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the shorter tenure proved helpful.
He also credits the school’s academic rigor as exemplified by the many contests and competitions in which students engage. “Through OSSM I participated in the 2001 International Chemistry Olympiad. The incredible rigor of this experience gave me the confidence to face any academic challenge. That confidence is what I rely on extensively today in my role as a manager and a scientific leader at DuPont.”
OSSM gives students the freedom to challenge their abilities and go as far as they can in a supportive and immersive environment.
“Sure, there are some hard exams and lots of work, and sometimes you don’t do as well as you’d like. But facing these trials, testing your abilities, and conquering the challenges before you give you a confidence in yourself that lasts a lifetime.”