MSFHR funds 17 exceptional early-career researchers in 2018 Scholar competition

13 June 2018

Since 2001, the MSFHR Scholar Program has supported more than 400 early-career health researchers as they establish independent research careers, build leading health research programs and train the next generation of scientists to support the long-term success of the BC health research landscape.

This year, 17 exceptional BC researchers join this distinguished group, working in areas including youth mental health, optimal vaccine use, and cancer metastasis. Each award provides salary support for up to five years which helps Scholars protect time to conduct research that improves the health of British Columbians, addresses health system priorities, creates jobs and grows our knowledge economy.

Eight of the 2018 Scholars are former Research Trainees. Together these flagship programs, which provide salary support during the training and growth stages of a researcher’s career, support the development and retention of BC’s research talent.

“My Scholar award came at a really critical time when I was starting to launch a bigger research program,” explains 2016 Scholar Dr. Meghan Winters, founder and lead of the Cities, Health & Active Transportation Research (CHATR) lab at Simon Fraser University. “The award was extraordinarily helpful in allowing me to really focus and grow that program of research.”

MSFHR actively seeks co-funding partners which allows us to fund a greater number of BC researchers and provide an opportunity for partnering organizations to advance research in their areas of interest. This year, MSFHR is delighted to be co-funding three Scholar awards, one with St. Paul’s Foundation, and two with CHÉOSProvidence Health Care Research Institute.

“Talent development is one of the key focuses of the Michael Smith Foundation, and with the support of our award partners, 17 exceptional BC researchers are receiving 2018 Scholar awards, which will enable them to build leading health research programs that benefit all British Columbians,” says Dr. Bev Holmes, MSFHR President & CEO. “This early-career support is a key to retaining the type of people BC needs to grow our knowledge economy.”

2018 marks 25 years since our namesake, Dr. Michael Smith, received his Nobel Prize. A pre-eminent BC scientist, he had a long-standing commitment to supporting researchers throughout their careers. MSFHR is proud to continue Dr. Smith’s legacy with every funding award we issue.