Minda Suchan is a 1995 St. Catherine University alumna and a member of the University’s Board of Trustees. She is at the top of her professional field, serving as the executive officer and vice president of geointelligence for MDA, Canada’s largest space technology developer and manufacturer.
Suchan double-majored in chemistry and mathematics at St. Kate’s, then earned a doctoral degree in chemistry at the University of Southern California. “But it was my liberal arts background that best prepared me for the leadership challenges I face today,” she said, citing her Katie LEAD-team experience, her collaborative Honors course, and campus conversations about women in leadership as valuable foundational elements for her career.
“These unique St. Kate’s experiences positioned me for success, beyond just the need for academic knowledge, which is why I continue to support St. Catherine University today.”
A strong supporter of the Katie Fund priority of LEAD & INFLUENCE: The Campaign for the Next Level of Excellence, Suchan appreciates “the direct impact my campaign contributions can make on both students and the campus.” The wide range of support that the Katie Fund provides is important to her:
“I have been a recipient of St. Catherine alumnae scholarships, and I recognize how important this was to my ability to access higher education, as well as gain a global perspective. The faculty were very impactful on how I thought about leadership and my place in the world, and I will always remember St. Catherine’s beautiful campus being the true deciding factor in choosing which university to attend — the scent of lilacs still brings me back to campus. I still remember fondly Mendel Hall and the many science courses I took there, as well every Sunday playing flute in Our Lady of Victory Chapel. I am truly grateful for my experience at St. Catherine, which has brought me far in my career, and I find it very satisfying to be able to give back today.”
Her prominent role in business and science makes Suchan’s opinion of a St. Kate’s education important to both prospective students and prospective donors.
“As a woman in the STEM field, I ... find the most impactful problem-solving occurs with bringing in different perspectives, enabling true collaboration and encouraging outside-the-box thinking, which is encouraged at St. Catherine University. For example, at other universities, scientific laboratory experiments are completed on an individual basis, but at St. Catherine, lab experiments are done in teams or at minimum with another partner. This trained us to be more collaborative about problem-solving in science, which is a major part of how science evolves today, and ultimately develops better solutions for today's most challenging issues."
The St. Catherine community is grateful for Minda Suchan and her open-hearted service to the University. Generations of Katies will benefit from her generosity.