HBHL contributes funding to VAST Platform

Published: 28 April 2022

Earlier this year, the Government of Canada and its partners announced that they will invest $31.1 million over six years to support the training and development of students and early career researchers. The Health Research Training Platform (HRTP) will form 17 collaborative health research teams of participants across Canada with the goal of increasing their career prospects and building on Canadian research capacity at large.

McGill University, through Health Brains, Healthy Lives (HBHL), is one of seven universities that provided an additional $2.9 million to support the Vascular Contributions to Cognitive Decline Training (VAST) Platform as part of the HRTP.

"The VAST Platform is a unique opportunity for McGill and Canadian trainees to become the next generation of experts in cerebrovascular disease, ischemic events and stroke that contribute to cognitive decline in aging, including Alzheimer’s disease," said Edith Hamel, PhD, Theme Leader of HBHL's Theme 2: Mechanistic Models of Neurodegenerative Diseases. "Finding effective ways to maintain healthy blood vessels and brain perfusion can only help slow down or prevent the appearance of dementia in our aging population."

The VAST Platform will work with 26 external partner organizations including charitable organizations, non-profit and for-profit organizations and companies that will offer experiential learning opportunities for VAST students.

The platform will also provide online learning and mentorship opportunities for students and early career researchers across Canada, including funding for 308 student stipends. VAST will create strategies for equity, diversity and inclusion that will ensure candidates from underrepresented demographics are equitably represented in its cohorts.

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