CBR Research Day 2023: Celebrating our summer students!

Tuesday, November 28, 2023 Abby Wolfe

Our partnership with the Centre for Blood Research (CBR) at the University of British Columbia (UBC) is helping to train the next generation of researchers in transfusion science. This blog post highlights just some of the achievements in education, training or knowledge mobilization accomplished by CBR trainees.

This is a repost of a blog written by CBR summer student alumni Paniz Ghavimi and Rayan Ramadan that originally appeared on the Centre for Blood Research blog in October 2023.

It’s that time of the year! 23 summer students start to roam the CBR hallways, doing everything from lab, clinical, and computational research – all to get ready for Research Day 2023.

Each year, students have the opportunity to apply for the CBR Summer Studentship Program. This program supports them financially and academically through weekly seminars, workshops, and funding.

A group of students sitting in a lecture hall

Students, family, friends & the CBR community gather for presentations.

On August 9th, students, friends, family, and the CBR community gathered in-person and online to attend the annual CBR Research Day. The day started with a delicious catered lunch and brief remarks from Dr. Ed Conway, CBR director. Following the opening remarks, 23 enthusiastic students presented the research projects they had been working on all summer in a 3-minute oral talk.

Afterwards, Dr. Conway announced the recipient of the Neil Mackenzie Mentorship Excellence Award. Dr. Neil Mackenzie, a late Postdoctoral Fellow in Dr. Brömme’s lab, was a devoted and caring mentor who was always available to support and motivate students and colleagues. This year’s Neil Mackenzie Mentorship Excellence Award recipient was Dr. Grace Cole, a Postdoctoral Fellow in Dr. Karsan’s lab. Dr. Cole indicated the significance of their mentors in their career and expressed the importance of mentorship and creating a friendly environment for the growth of students.

Next, Dr. Megan Smith, associate professor in creative technologies, provided a fascinating presentation on “Designing a New Future”. She expressed the importance of connecting physical computing within virtual reality environments. Dr. Smith described her various interesting projects and explained how she rode a networked vintage stationary bike across Canada.

Guests convened in the LSC Atrium to find posters covering the research topics presented during the oral presentations. Students were able to engage in lively conversations and answer questions about various details in their studies. This also presented a networking opportunity for students to get to know other members of the CBR community.

The evening concluded with an announcement of the best oral presentation and best poster presentation, awarded to Zechariah Geoffrey Noronha and Max Yang respectively. The best oral presentation was evaluated based on peer scoring, helping students engage in the process of evaluating science communication. A panel of judges evaluated the best poster presentation.

The variety of workshops and seminars leading up to this day helped students actively engage with presentations, presenters, and attendees. We asked a couple of students about their CBR Research Day experience:

“I was able to connect with other students who are also passionate about research and learn about a variety of studies that are going on.” – May Jang, summer student

“Throughout CBR research day, I was able to connect with like-minded researchers and participate in a significant academic milestone- a poster presentation – which boosted my confidence and makes me endeavour to present in more future conferences.” – Akilesh Shankar, summer student

A group of students sitting in a lecture hall

Students, friends, family & the CBR community gather for presentations.

Students got to walk out with more than just rolled-up posters. Research Day showcased their months of hard work to a community full of support! A special thank you goes out to the CBR community for their support and attendance at CBR Research Day 2023.

Many thanks to our sponsors, without whom the CBR Summer Studentship Program and CBR Research Day would not be possible: the Neil Mackenzie Memorial Fund, the Naiman-Vickars Endowment Fund, Bayer, Canadian Blood Services, Stago and GRIFOLS. Additionally, we are grateful for all the support and kindness of Dr. Parvin Bolourani, Education Program Manager.

See you again next year!

Canadian Blood Services – Driving world-class innovation 

Through discovery, development and applied research, Canadian Blood Services drives world-class innovation in blood transfusion, cellular therapy and transplantation—bringing clarity and insight to an increasingly complex healthcare future. Our dedicated research team and extended network of partners engage in exploratory and applied research to create new knowledge, inform and enhance best practices, contribute to the development of new services and technologies, and build capacity through training and collaboration. Find out more about our research impact

The opinions reflected in this post are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Canadian Blood Services nor do they reflect the views of Health Canada or any other funding agency.


Related blog posts

Tuesday, August 22, 2023
John Perrier

The Centre for Blood Research (CBR) at the University of British Columbia celebrated its 20-year anniversary on July 7th by inviting CBR alumni to join current members in learning about the beginnings of the centre. Read about the celebration and the history of the centre in this blog reposted from CBR.

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Summer students at the Centre for Blood Research describe their informative tour of Canadian Blood Services’ Blood4Research facility, where they learned about what this facility does and how blood is processed into components.

Tuesday, November 08, 2022

Want to learn about the latest research at the Centre for Blood Research (CBR)? If cutting-edge, interdisciplinary work in science and medicine interests you, then you’ll want to catch this event recap on CBR Research Day 2022!