Articles tagged with: Neuroscience

  • Linguistics, neuroscience and cognitive psychology come together in Brock lab

    As Brock prepares to welcome prospective students curious about where their studies might take them, the Dwivedi Brain and Language Lab is proof that transdisciplinary research lets you follow your passion — even if you aren’t quite sure what that passion is.

    The lab, run by Psychology Associate Professor Veena Dwivedi is part of the Centre for Lifespan Development Research, one of Brock’s transdisciplinary hubs.

    Dwivedi and her research team combine linguistic theory with cutting edge neuroscience methods to examine how people process language and sentences in the brain. By approaching the subject from multiple disciplines, Dwivedi’s research may ultimately help improve the diagnosis of diseases and disorders, from Alzheimer’s to Attention Deficit Disorder.

    “If you want to do the hard work of understanding how the brain works, you have to bring together fundamental knowledge from more than one discipline,” she says.

    Dwivedi’s devotion to transdisciplinary research often inspires students working in her lab, which presently includes three fourth-year students from different Brock Faculties.

    Alanna Kozak, a Speech and Language Sciences student in the Department of Applied Linguistics, plans to attend medical school after graduation. Medical Science student Harmonie Chan plans to pursue a master’s degree in speech pathology.

    A third student, Neuroscience major Janahan Selvanayagam, speaks highly of the freedom he enjoyed in exploring novel analytical approaches in the lab. He found that his experience confirmed his passion for neuroscience research, which he will continue to pursue in graduate school next year.

    Previous lab students have gone on to diverse experiences around the world — from universities and health care systems to other research ventures as far away as Germany and Poland. One of these alumni, Raechelle Gibson, recently completed a PhD in Behavioural and Cognitive Neuroscience and is now working on her MD. She credits Brock with affording her opportunities to explore her many interests.

    “The mentorship and teaching I received from Brock fostered my learning and spurred my intellectual curiosity,” says Gibson. “I consider myself very fortunate to have had the opportunities for learning and research that I did so early on in my training. Brock is a special place and offers a fantastic learning environment.”

    For Dwivedi, this is what her work is all about.

    “I want students to realize that they will be supported at Brock. Even if they are different, they can find a place here. Even if they change their minds as they learn and grow, they will be supported. They can achieve their dreams.”

    Read the full story here

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  • FMS celebrates best in teaching, research and experiential learning

    Faculty and staff members who have set positive examples for their colleagues were honoured by the Faculty of Mathematics and Science during Wednesday’s Celebration of Excellence. The fourth annual event, held Jan. 24 in Pond Inlet, saw awards of distinction presented for research, teaching, student experience and experiential learning.

    “This awards ceremony provides us with an opportunity to gather together and acknowledge the accomplishments of our faculty and staff in front of their Math and Science family, as well as our larger Brock family,” Dean Ejaz Ahmed told the group during his remarks at the Jan. 24 event in Pond Inlet.

    “Once again, we have much to celebrate and recognize. From research excellence and distinguished teachers and scholars to those who provide our students with exceptional experiential learning opportunities that further the Faculty’s mission, vision and values. I am proud of your dedication and commitment and I look forward to continuing to celebrate your accomplishments at this great event.”

    Following remarks from Gary Comerford, Board of Trustees Chair, and Thomas Dunk, Provost and Vice-President, Academic, the awards portion of the event began with Associate Dean Research and Graduate Studies Cheryl McCormick serving as Master of Ceremonies.

    Department of Chemistry Professor Jeffrey Atkinson received this year’s Distinguished Teaching Award – Faculty for his long and successful record of supervising students, mentoring high school seniors through Brock’s Science Mentorship Program, his involvement in the design and implementation of Brock’s first PhD program in Biotechnology as well as his outreach teaching activities through BioTalent Canada.

    “During his career at Brock, Dr. Atkinson has earned a reputation for being one of our most gifted teachers,” said McCormick. “His teaching evaluations are outstanding and he routinely receives comments from students calling him an excellent professor, the best professor they’ve ever had and more equally enthusiastic and complimentary praise.”

    Atkinson’s dedication to his students and their education has helped create an environment of teaching excellence within the Faculty, she said.

    The Distinguished Teaching Award for Staff was captured by full-time instructor Paul Zelisko, also from the Department of Chemistry. Zelisko was recognized for his untiring dedication to education and graduate student recruitment.

    McCormick noted that Zelisko has been a consistent representative of the Faculty, organizing Brock representation every year for a number of events including the McMaster University Graduate Fair, undergraduate trips to the east coast and, most notably, last year’s Graduate Studies Open House. This event, created for undergraduate students at Brock thinking of transitioning to graduate research, helped increase student engagement and was well received.

    This year’s Lifetime Achievement Award – Faculty was awarded to professor Jon Radue from the Department of Computer Science, who has earned a reputation for caring deeply about many aspects of teaching and education.

    A true innovator, he incorporated technology such as clickers into the classroom to further student engagement long before it was commonplace. He has been actively involved with the Centre for Pedagogical Innovation as a faculty associate and member of the Teaching Council and his work on academic integrity extends beyond the department and throughout the University.

    “In the Department of Computer Science, Radue spearheaded the development of the Applied Computing minor along with many of its courses. His knowledge and dedication made him an easy choice for teaching large first-year context courses taken by a wide variety of students from all disciplines,” said McCormick.

    “His passion for education, combined with his knowledge and dedication have become part of his legacy at Brock.”

    The Distinguished Research Award for Faculty was presented to Henryk Fuks from the Department of Mathematics and Statistics for his excellent record of accomplishment in research, focused in the areas of mathematical modelling, complex networks as well as the history of mathematics and numismatics, the study of currency.

    Along with serving on editorial boards for several prestigious journals and on scientific program committees for international conferences, Fuks also regularly receives international recognition for his research. Last August, the Royal Canadian Numismatic Society honoured him with the Guy Potter Literary Award, recognizing two of his articles which popularized the history of mathematics in the area of numismatics.

    Gaynor Spencer from the Department of Biological Sciences also received the Distinguished Research Award for Faculty. Promoted to Full Professor in July, she is currently supervising three graduate students and two undergraduate thesis students in her lab.

    “Gaynor has maintained high quality research productivity while providing great service to the University and research community,” said McCormick. Her longstanding history of research excellence is evidenced in part by her strong record of NSERC Discovery Grant funding, an Ontario Premier’s Research Excellence Award as well as quality, peer-reviewed publications; 38 papers, five invited reviews and four book chapters.

    Additional awards distributed at the Jan. 24 celebration included:

    •  Dean’s Distinguished Scholar Award — Faculty awarded to Mei-Ling Huang (Department of Mathematics and Statistics) and Fereidoon Razavi (Department of Physics) for their contributions to research, teaching and service.
    •  Distinguished Staff Award won by Jacinta Dano (Department of Biological Sciences) for the creation and implementation of the highly successful LabSkills+ program, which recognizes the importance of experiential learning and provides students with the laboratory skills they need to market themselves in an increasingly competitive industry.
    •  Earth Sciences Professor Frank Fueten received the Student Experience, Recruitment and Outreach Award for Faculty. For more than 20 years, he has devoted countless hours to high school students through Brock’s Science Mentorship Program. Fueten has also been particularly active in experiential learning both in the classroom and in the field, lending his experience and expertise to hundreds of geology students.
    •  Daniel Lonergan received the Student Experience, Recruitment and Outreach Award for Staff. During his time as the Experiential Education Co-ordinator for the Faculty, he played a significant role in enhancing the student experience through experiential education. He also represented the Faculty at several key events including the Ontario University Fair, Open House and Fall Preview Day.
    •  The new Experiential Education Leadership Award was given to Earth Sciences Professor Uwe Brand, who received the Distinguished Research Award last year. For nearly 30 years, Brand has provided students with unique, high-quality, hands-on learning experiences. His approach to experiential education links in-class learning with practical applications designed to help prepare students for the real world.

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  • January 28: Deadline for Deborah E. Roast Entrepreneurship Award

    Applications are open for a competitive award that gives Brock’s entrepreneurial students an edge on the path to success. Established in 2014, the Deborah E. Rosati Entrepreneurship Award annually provides at least one student with $10,000 to become a full-time entrepreneur in the Spring/Summer term.

    The student who receives the award will work closely with BioLinc, Brock’s on-campus business incubator run by the Goodman School of Business, and gain access to physical space, support services, mentorship and networking opportunities from May to August.

    The award is open to any Brock student with almost any type of business concept. Co-op students are able to use the semester towards a co-op work term.

    Brock students Ethan Foy and Olivia Poulin were last year’s recipients, and they have both enjoyed entrepreneurial success thanks in part to their ability to focus their efforts to their businesses full-time last summer.

    Earlier this month, Foy won a $14,000 startup prize package at Monster Pitch, an entrepreneurial pitch competition hosted by the Brock Innovation Group in partnership with the Goodman School of Business and BioLinc. The fifth-year neuroscience student from Oakville won the competition by pitching LifePoints, his company that provides users with monetary rewards for time spent at fitness facilities.

    Students can apply for the Deborah Rosati award on the BioLinc website until Sunday, Jan. 28.

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  • Neuroscience student Ethan Foy wins Monster Pitch

    Monday proved to be a dream come true for Ethan Foy.

    The fifth-year neuroscience student from Oakville won a $14,000 prize package at Monster Pitch, an entrepreneurial pitch competition hosted by the Brock Innovation Group in partnership with the Goodman School of Business and BioLinc and sponsored by Spark Power Corp.

    More than a year ago, Foy began working on his business called LifePoints. He envisioned a mobile application that would offer monetary rewards to its users based on the time they spent at fitness facilities.

    He first applied for Monster Pitch last year and although he was not selected to present at the competition, he had started on a journey toward his vision. He also applied for — and received — the Deborah E. Rosati Entrepreneurship Award, which provided him with funding, space and mentorship to help him launch his business. Since receiving the award at last year’s Monster Pitch event, he has worked tirelessly to build his business.

    This year, he returned to Monster Pitch armed with a year of experience and with his mind set on winning. He did just that, walking away with much more than the $14,000 prize package.

    “The biggest thing I was looking to get out of Monster Pitch was being able to present in front of a world-class group of judges. I wanted to know where LifePoints stands in the eyes of the them and to get feedback from individuals who have seen a multitude of businesses,” he said.

    Read the full story here



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  • First female Associate Dean for Math and Science

    Cheryl McCormick is no stranger to the road less travelled.

    Her passion for STEM research (science, technology, engineering and math) has driven her forward in the once male-dominated field, and recently led her to a new position at Brock after more than two years as Director of the University’s Centre of Neuroscience.

    McCormick began her three-year term as Associate Dean, Research and Graduate Studies for the Faculty of Mathematics and Science on Jan. 1, becoming the first female appointed to the role.

    In her new position, she hopes to inspire other women to pursue a career in STEM research, particularly at Brock.

    McCormick’s main goal is to help promote the success of research at the University.

    Along with primary thesis supervision, she has supervised the research training of 13 graduate students and more than 70 undergraduates. Passionate about helping and recognizing the research of students, McCormick works with Science Without Borders research interns, participates in the Faculty’s Science Mentorship Program and assists with Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council-funded (NSERC) research.

    She has been with Brock’s Department of Psychology and Centre for Neuroscience since 2004, participating in various Department committees and speaker series. She also remains part of the Behavioural Neuroscience Committee, which she has served on for the past 14 years.

    McCormick is an associate member of the Department of Biology and has been a member of the Environmental Sustainability Research Centre since 2013.

    Along with departmental, faculty and University committees, McCormick has also served on numerous national and international research committees during her time at Brock. Most recently, she was a presenter for an NSERC grant workshop through the Office of Research Services and helped complete an internal review of graduate student scholarships for the Dean of Graduate Studies.

    She is the recipient of several awards, scholarships, internal and external grants and has been an invited symposia and colloquia speaker across Canada, the U.S. and abroad.

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  • Fifth-year Neuroscience student Monster Pitch finalist

    The rewards are starting to add up for Ethan Foy. The fifth-year neuroscience student from Oakville, is working on his business idea called LifePoints. The mobile application rewards users for time spent at a fitness facility with points they can later cash in at local businesses. The application is now live on the App Store for iPhones, with a version soon to follow for Android users.

    Foy will be presenting LifePoints on the stage at the upcoming Monster Pitch competition Monday, Jan. 8 at the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre.

    It’s a moment he’s had his eye on for more than a year.

    LifePoints had been percolating in Foy’s mind since before last year’s Monster Pitch and his goal was to one day join the finalists on the stage to share his vision with the judges. Having previously worked as a student ambassador with BioLinc, Brock’s business incubator run by the Goodman School of Business, he was familiar with the resources that would benefit him when it came time to launch his own business.

    Foy began to work on his idea for LifePoints and it paid off at the end of last year’s event, when BioLinc announced that he was one of two recipients of the Deborah E. Rosati Entrepreneurship Award, which provided him with mentorship and funding over the summer while he worked full time on his business.

    Foy is passionate about the idea of having customers receive monetary rewards, and has designed his mobile application as an experience-driven reward platform, breaking away from the conventional loyalty model companies use to reward customers for their purchases through accumulated points and product discounts.

    “I fell in love with the idea of being able to provide a monetary reward for every other aspect of life, outside of work life,” said Foy.

    Read the full story here


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  • Brock researchers awarded $3.8 million NSERC funding, up $1.4 million from last year

    Almost two dozen Brock researchers – the majority from the Faculty of Mathematics & Science – received funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC). The $3.8 million in funding under NSERC’s 2017 competition for the Discovery research programs, is more than $1.4 million over last year’s results.

    Brock’s funding includes Discovery Grants, Discovery Development Grants, Discovery Accelerator Supplements and the Northern Research Supplement, as well as master’s and doctoral student awards. Read the full story and the names of all recipients here

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  • Brock neuroscientist studying early autism detection in the brain

    Neuroscientist and professor in Brock University’s Department of Psychology, Sid Segalowitz is on a mission to determine how early the development of autism can be detected in a child’s brain. Segalowitz and his Brock research team are widely recognized for their ability to record and interpret brain waves gathered by an electroencephalogram (EEG). It’s one reason an international research team based at McGill University turned to them to help interpret data from hundreds of children. Read the full story here

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  • Goodman award helps Neuroscience student student launch fitness app

    Brock neuroscience student Ethan Foy was one of two recipients of this year’s Deborah E. Rosati Entrepreneurship Award, which allowed him to pursue his mobile app venture full time this summer. Read his story here

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  • Faculty of Mathematics and Science recognizes achievements

    The Faculty of Mathematics and Science held its third annual Celebration of Excellence ceremony on January 19, handing out awards for accomplishments in research, teaching and student experience. “As a group we have a lot to be proud of: excellent undergraduate and graduate programs and innovative and exciting research programs,” Interim Dean Alan Castle told the group that gathered for the awards ceremony. Read about the award recipients here

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