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Top doctoral students awarded 12 Vanier Scholarships

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Published: 30 Apr 2009

Top doctoral students awarded 11 Vanier Scholarships Up-and-coming scholars receive $50,000 a year for three years in support of their world-class research.

Top doctoral students awarded 12 Vanier Scholarships Up-and-coming scholars receive $50,000 a year for three years in support of their world-class research.

McGill University is proud to announce that 12 of its top scholars have won prestigious Vanier Scholarships to pursue their studies at the doctoral level in a wide variety of disciplines that span health sciences, the arts, education and the physical sciences.

These stellar researchers, working on projects involving nanotechnology, health, neuroscience and robotics, will receive $50,000 a year for three years to support their leading research. They will join others across the country who are part of a growing group of top-tier doctoral students who contribute to Canada's economic, social and research-based growth.

The McGill recipients are:

Christopher Ames - Faculty of Arts, Dept. of Anthropology Christopher Ames's work unearths the origins of human behaviour by looking at paleoenvironmental change and hominid/human occupation in the Azraq Basin in Jordan.

Dana Bailey - Faculty of Medicine, Dept. of Biochemistry Dana Bailey's research focuses on the application of the molecular understanding of high-density lipoprotein biogenesis to provide surrogate endpoints for use in an atherosclerosis therapy study.

Lisa Buchy - Faculty of Medicine, Dept. of Neuroscience Studies Working in the mental health and neurosciences field, Lisa Buchy's research focuses on the functional neuro-imaging of cognitive insight in first-episode psychosis.

Sylvanne Daniels - Faculty of Medicine, Dept. of Microbiology and Immunology Focusing on the broad themes of infection and Immunity, Sylvanne Daniels researches the regulation of HIV-1 replication by RNA interference and proteins of the RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC).

Glen Deleavey - Faculty of Science, Dept. of Chemistry Glen Deleavey works on the development of chemically modified oligonuleotides to regulate gene expression.

Jennifer Gordon - Faculty of Science, Dept. of Psychology. Jennifer studies the circulatory system and respiration and the links between depression and cardiovascular problems.

Noor Johnson - Faculty of Arts, Dept. of Anthropology. Noor Johnson, a cultural anthropologist, studies Inuit participation in climate change activism and policy.

Serene Joseph - Faculty of Medicine, Dept. of Epidemiology, Biostatistics & Occupational Health Serene Joseph's doctoral work looks at the burden of disease in pregnant women with malaria and parasite co-infection and health inequalities contributing to poor maternal and child health outcomes.

Therese Lennert - Faculty of Medicine, Dept. of Physiology Therese Lennert studies the mechanisms of target selection and attentional control in the frontal lobes of primates.

William Paul - Faculty of Science, Dept. of Physics William Paul's research focuses on nanoelectronics with atomically defined contacts.

Anna Polotskaia - Faculty of Education, School/Applied Child Psychology Anna Polostkaia looks at the short- and long-term effects of psychostimulants on academic and cognitive outcomes in children diagnosed with and treated for Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

Anqi Xu - Faculty of Science, School of Computer Science Anqi Xu's research aims to improve human-robot interaction through the development of a gesture-based communication system for marine robotics.

"I am so proud of these exceptional young people," said Heather Munroe-Blum, McGill's Principal and Vice-Chancellor. "This is a very important program, not only for McGill, but for all Canadian universities, and we congratulate the federal government for playing an active part in encouraging research and scientific inquiry. We need to continue to retain and attract the best and the brightest from across the country and around the world and the Vanier scholarships are a very vital - and very generous - program in support of that goal. We need to do all we can in Canada to build on our world-class research and development capacity and programs like the Vanier scholarships help enormously.

"Congratulations to all our recipients. They have worked hard and they have earned this high honour."

The Vanier program was designed to support Canada's science and technology policy direction, which capitalizes on people, strengthens knowledge and encourages entrepreneurial advantages to build a competitive Canada. It aims to attract and retain world-class doctoral students by supporting students who demonstrate a high standard of scholarly achievement in graduate studies in the social sciences and humanities, natural sciences and engineering, and health; as well as leadership skills. Both Canadian and international students are eligible to be nominated for a Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship.

"This is terrific news," said Martin Kreiswirth, Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies and Associate Provost of Graduate Education. "The breadth and depth of their research - from examining proteins to digging-up our human past - is extremely impressive. Supporting this work is of vital importance for the production of knowledge and advancement of society. Their innovations should bring great benefit to Canada and the world for years to come."

On the web:
www.mcgill.ca

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