Bringing Home Knowledge

posted 23 March 2010
by Katie Chalmers-Brooks

Two University of Manitoba graduate students are part of an elite group from across Canada selected to receive the 2009 Canada Graduate Scholarships - Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement.

Faculty of Graduate Studies students Laura Cobus (physics and astronomy) and Morgan Craig (mathematics) will each receive financial support from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) to pursue research at institutions outside Canada, member of Parliament Royal Galipeau announced in Ottawa on Monday.

"This is an incredible opportunity for these graduate students. Not only will they be expanding their knowledge in their chosen research field, but developing exciting new international collaborations," said John (Jay) Doering, Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies.

Cobus is heading to Paris, France to do research at the Institut Langevin Ondes et Images at the École Supériere de Physique et Chimie Industrielles. The world-class institute was founded to further the study of waves for new applications and methods of imaging. Cobus' research involves using ultrasonic sound waves in a novel way to investigate the localization of these waves in three dimensions. The phenomenon of localization, where sound waves are 'trapped' in a material, is an area of wave theory that is not yet fully understood.

Craig will be in Germany doing research at the University of Ulm, along with the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg and the University of Aachen (the largest technology university in the country). Her research involves the construction of mathematical models of intermediate filament (IF) assembly. Intermediate filaments are one of three components in a cell's structure. They regulate the morphology and changes in the shape of cells, in addition to transmitting signals within the cell. A better understanding of IF assembly could help establish the link to certain diseases like Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).

"I congratulate the recipients and wish them the best of luck in their research endeavours abroad," said Digvir Jayas, Vice-President (Research) and Distinguished Professor. "This will provide a tremendous educational experience."

The Michael Smith program helps high-calibre Canadian graduate students undertake short-term research studies outside Canada. The federal government invests $1.5 million per year to provide supplements for 250 students - valued at up to $6,000 each - to help them offset the cost (including travel, tuition and accommodation) of studying outside Canada for a three to six-month period.

Learn more about NSERC

Learn more about the U of M Faculty of Graduate Studies