Applied Health Sciences graduate student Dinara Salaeva came to Brock University from Moscow, Russia and found the perfect master’s supervisor to work with in Nursing Professor Lynn Rempel.
“I came to Brock to find a master’s supervisor who was working in a field I was passionate about,” says Salaeva.
When she heard about the innovative research Rempel was doing, she was intrigued. Rempel is looking at father’s involvement in infant development in Asian cultures in Vietnam.
“I’ve always been curious about human development and especially child development. Although childhood is a transitional stage in human development, it establishes the foundation for the person’s mental and emotional potentials. When I learned that my now supervisor was looking at how parents can enhance early childhood learning and development, I had to meet her,” explains Salaeva.
The first challenge was that Rempel was in Vietnam, so their first meeting was over Skype, Salaeva says.
“Working with Dinara has been great. She’s amazing because she just jumped in. As an international student, even though English is not her first language, it didn’t prevent her from becoming an exemplary leader at Brock or in the broader community, through her volunteerism with Niagara Region Public Health,” says Rempel.
In addition to her graduate work, which looks at the Structural Equation Model of Father Involvement in Infant Development in Vietnam using Identity Theory, Salaeva has received numerous awards in recognition of her leadership and service to Brock and the broader Niagara community.
Her list of accomplishments include; being a recipient of the 2016 President’s Surgite Award, the Graduate Teaching Assistant Award from the Centre for Pedagogical Innovation and being one of the five finalists for the Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, among others.
“It is an honour to receive the President’s Surgite Award. This award represents so many things that I have been involved in over the last three years. Receiving recognition from the president of the university has made me realize that everything I have done here has significance. I have made a difference to Brock students, which has motivated me to want to more,” says Salaeva.
Salaeva, who defended her thesis on Wednesday, Aug. 3, wants to encourage other graduate students to get involved with all that Brock has to offer.
“As I reflect on my three years at Brock, in addition to the skills that I wanted to enhance as a researcher, what I most wanted was to gain more diverse experiences. One way to do this was to get involved in student groups,” says Salaeva.
Salaeva will begin applying to PhD programs in the fall.
The President’s Surgite Award is presented to 10 recipients annually, seven awards are presented to undergraduate students and three to graduate students. Also recognized with the 2016 President’s Surgite Award for their outstanding achievements as graduate students were Aidan Smyth (Applied Health Sciences) and Jessica Vickruck (Math & Sciences).