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The GCI Stands Out as Home to Six Vanier Scholars as Trainees Excel in Securing National and Provincial Funding Awards

The Rosalind and Morris Goodman Cancer Institute (GCI) is nurturing excellence among early-career cancer researchers, a commitment underscored by its impressive cohort of Vanier Scholars. With six Vanier Scholars among its ranks, the GCI stands out as a beacon of excellence, especially given its relatively small number of researchers. The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships, one of the country’s most significant academic awards, recognize exceptional doctoral students who demonstrate leadership skills and outstanding scholarly achievement in graduate studies.

This year, three GCI trainees received Vanier scholarships: Aline Atallah from the Quail lab was awarded for her project entitled “The functional complexities of macrophage ontogeny in glioblastoma outcomes”. In the Muller lab, Tarek Taifour received his award for his project  “Investigating the role of Chi3l1 in non-small cell lung cancer progression and resistance to immunotherapies”. Jamie Magrill’s project entitled “Identification of biomarkers using single cell technology that inform on targeted and immune therapy treatment in melanoma” was awarded in the Watson lab. Award holders from previous years include Sarah Maritan from the Siegel lab, Mark Sorin from the Walsh lab, and Joan Romero from the Zogopoulos lab.

Prof. William Muller, a principal investigator at the GCI and supervisor to current Vanier award holder Tarek Taifour, highlighted the broader implications of these awards: “Recognition through the Vanier program can transform the research and career trajectory of a young researcher. The investment in the potential of these students yields exceptional results for the progress of cancer research”. 

In addition to the Vanier Scholarships, GCI students have also excelled in securing other provincial and national funding awards this year. Canada Graduate Scholarships (CGS) for Master’s research were awarded to six students, while three doctoral students received CGS awards. At the provincial level, the Fonds de Recherche du Québec recognized eight master’s students and seven doctoral students with scholarships. 

Prof. Morag Park, Director of the GCI, reflected on the accomplishments of the Institute’s trainees: “The achievement of supporting six Vanier Scholars is particularly noteworthy for the GCI. It highlights the exceptional quality of mentorship, research opportunities, and academic environment that the GCI offers.”

The Rosalind and Morris Goodman Cancer Institute’s distinction as home to six Vanier Scholars, along with numerous other award-winning students, solidifies its reputation as a leading institute for cancer research. This achievement not only highlights the GCI's dedication to fostering high-quality research but also its critical role in training the next generation of scientific leaders in Québec.

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