New Scholarship Recipients
We are pleased to introduce the 2016 recipients of the Robert Caton and David Bates Scholarships: Erin Evoy and Angela Yao.
Congratulations also to the recipients of the 2015-2016 BC CLEAR Scholarship Awards: Marabeth Kramer and Larissa Richards.
The next call for scholarship applications is expected in the fall of 2016.
Robert Caton Scholarship: $2,500
Erin is a first-year graduate student in the Department of Chemistry at the University of British Columbia, supervised by Dr. Allan Bertram. She completed her BSc (Hons) in Chemistry at Western University in 2015.
Erin is part of the NSERC Collaborative Research and Training Experience – Atmospheric Aerosol Program (CREATE-AAP), which brings together research groups from a number of faculties across the UBC campus. Her work focuses on atmospheric aerosols and their effect on climate, human health and air quality.
Erin’s work is focused on studying the atmospheric effects of aerosols, which are particles suspended in the atmosphere. Aerosol particles participate in atmospheric chemistry, reacting with organic molecules and gas phase oxidants; however the reaction rates may be dependent on the viscosity of the aerosol, which may potentially range from the viscosity of water to greater than that of tar pitch. Viscosity can also affect the rate and mechanism of aerosol particle growth, as well as the long-range transport of pollutants. Techniques developed in the Bertram group allow for viscosity measurements of very small sample volumes, such as those produced in environmental simulation chambers. These measurements will be used to improve climate models and lead to the more accurate predictions of the effects of aerosols in the atmosphere.
David Bates Scholarship: $2,500
Jiayun Angela Yao is a second-year PhD student in the School of Population and Public Health at the University of British Columbia (UBC), supervised by Dr. Sarah Henderson and Dr. Michael Brauer. She completed her undergraduate education in environmental science in China, and obtained her master’s degree from the Occupational and Environmental Health program at UBC. Since then she has conducted research on the public health effects of exposure to forest fire smoke as an environmental health scientist at the BC Centre for Disease Control.
In 2014, Angela returned to school and started her PhD training. Her PhD thesis will look at the very acute health effects of sub-daily exposure to forest fire smoke (e.g., exposure to high concentrations for only a few hours). This project will have three objectives: 1) to develop an empirical model that estimates hourly PM2.5 exposure during the forest fire season for the entire population of BC; 2) to assess the association between hourly exposure to PM2.5 from forest fires and risk of respiratory and cardiovascular events attended by ambulance services; and 3) to provide evidence-based recommendations to improve the practice of issuing air quality advisories during forest fire smoke events. The work will generate new and necessary evidence on health impacts from sub-daily exposure to forest fire smoke, and it will inform changes in our current public health practices to mitigate the adverse impacts.
BC CLEAR Scholarship Award: $1,000
Marabeth Kramer is a second-year MSc student in the School of Population and Public Health (Occupational and Environmental Hygiene theme) at the University of British Columbia. Through support from a Collaborative Research and Training Experience-Atmospheric Aerosol Program (CREATE-AAP) fellowship, Marabeth is studying the effect of diesel exhaust and allergen exposure on inflammatory mediators called adipokines. These proteins, as their name would suggest, are released primarily from the adipose tissue, and are observed to be released in response to inhaled inflammatory stimuli in animal models. Through the measurement of these proteins in the context of a controlled human study, the mechanistic function of adipokines in inflammatory lung processes can be elucidated, and their role in the pathophysiology of pulmonary disease explored.
BC CLEAR Fund Scholarship Award: $1,000 (with funding from the Vancouver Foundation)
Larissa Richards is a first-year MSc student studying Chemistry at the University of Victoria. She obtained her BSc in Chemistry and Mathematics from Vancouver Island University, where she is currently conducting research with the Applied Environmental Research Laboratories. Her research is focused on real-time mapping of the composition, source and extent of potential air quality impacts through the analysis of data collected with a field-portable membrane introduction mass spectrometer (MIMS). When paired with a global positioning system, MIMS provides geospatially resolved, real-time, direct and continuous analysis of the volatile organic compounds found in the atmosphere. This research will allow for intelligent, adaptive sampling in the field, as well as more effective emergency response and remediation strategies applicable to many industries. Larissa is the project coordinator for VIU’s “Awareness of Climate Change through Education and Research,” a public outreach group focused on raising awareness of the science and social implications of climate change through presentations, public discourse and hands-on activities.
Robert Caton Scholarship
The Robert Caton Scholarship was established in 2004 to honour the memory of Dr. Robert Brent Caton, a scholar, entrepreneur and expert in the field of air quality, atmospheric emissions, environmental management and policy.
David Bates Scholarship
The David Bates Scholarship was established in 2008 to honour the memory of Dr. David Vincent Bates, who was one of the foremost international authorities on the health effects of air pollution.
Find out more about the Robert Caton and David Bates Scholarships on the Province of BC website.
CLEAR Fund Scholarship
Depending on funding, an additional scholarship may be awarded by the BC Clean Air Research Fund in recognition of those students involved in air quality research that furthers the primary goal of the Fund: to acquire new knowledge to help understand and solve air quality management issues in BC. Those who apply to the Robert Caton and David Bates Scholarship would also be considered for the CLEAR Fund Scholarship.