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Op-ed: Dr. Neil Bose

Research Week: An opportunity to build partnerships and boost Memorial’s international profile

By Dr. Neil Bose

Six days. Four locations. Nearly 30 events.

After much planning by researchers, staff and students, Memorial’s inaugural Research Week, running May 12-17, is set to provide plenty of ways for members of our university community to learn more about our world-class research expertise.

From panel discussions and special lectures to networking sessions and open houses, I encourage you to participate in one of the many events taking place on the St. John’s campus, at the Marine Institute, at Grenfell Campus and at the Labrador Institute Research Station.

By doing so, you’ll learn more about Memorial’s many inventors, critical thinkers, scientists and creators — and the impact of their research — as well as the valuable work our tremendous staff do every day in supporting our university’s diverse research activities.

Personal invite

If you’re on the St. John’s campus on Monday, May 14, I’d like to personally invite you to our kick off event and panel discussion beginning at 10 a.m. in The Landing (room UC-3018) in the University Centre.

You’ll hear from five leading researchers from the Faculty of Medicine who are joining us for a discussion, titled Making a Difference Together: Memorial Researchers Use Molecular Genetics to Improve Health Outcomes for our Province.

Dr. Patrick Parfrey, John Lewis Paton Distinguished University Professor, Faculty of Medicine, will moderate a panel discussion featuring:

  • Dr. Sean Connors, associate professor, Faculty of Medicine (cardiology);
  • Dr. Bridget Fernandez, professor, Discipline of Genetics, Faculty of Medicine;
  • Dr. Proton Rahman, University Research Professor and associate dean, clinical research, and professor, Faculty of Medicine (rheumatology); and
  • Dr. Terry-Lynn Young, professor, Discipline of Genetics, Faculty of Medicine.

Later that same day, members of the university community are invited to drop by the main atrium of the Bruneau Centre for Research and Innovation to meet members of our university’s research teams.

I’ll be there, as will many of the team members from units in the research portfolio, as well as other groups, and learn more about how the services they provide. We’ll be set up between 2-4 p.m.

The next day, on Tuesday, May 15, I’m hosting an informal brown bag lunch from 12-1 p.m. in the Nexus Centre, room SN-4022, in the Science building. Come along with your questions or to just say hi.

I’ll also be on the West Coast participating in the symposium Coastal Communities in a Changing Climate: Impacts, Challenges and Solutions for Gros Morne, which is taking place on Grenfell Campus and in Rocky Harbour May 16-18.

Closing event

Our closing event on the St. John’s campus is taking place Thursday evening, May 17, from 7-9 p.m. in the Physical Education building, room PE-2001.

Memorial is hosting a discussion focusing on the following question: If you could envision a perfect relationship between Memorial University’s researchers and Indigenous communities, what would it look like and how do we get there?

Catharyn Andersen, special advisor to the president on Aboriginal Affairs, will be moderating the conversation and will be joined by the following panel members:

  • Marguerite MacKenzie, professor emerita, Department of Linguistics, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences;
  • Carolyn Sturge Sparks, co-ordinator, Aboriginal Health Initiative, Division of Community Health and Humanities, Faculty of Medicine;
  • Kelly Ann Butler, student affairs officer, Aboriginal Affairs, Grenfell Campus;
  • Amy Hudson, manager, Research, Education and Culture, NunatuKavut; and
  • Scott Neilsen, assistant professor, Department of Archaeology/Labrador Institute

Breadth and depth

By making time for one — or more — of the events taking place, you’ll gain a better appreciation of the breadth and depth of the incredibly talented people we work with, see in our classrooms, labs and hallways, and even read about here in the Gazette.

Through Research Week you’ll meet your neighbours, put a face to a name and learn about some of the many accomplishments that are helping boost our university’s international profile.

As you take in activities, I encourage you to share photos and videos on social media using the #researchweek2018 hashtag.

And, let me know what else you’d like to see take place next year during our Research Week celebration. Feel free to send me an email.

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