Campus News

Published by Communications and Public Affairs (519) 824-4120, Ext. 56982 or 53338

News Release

January 24, 2001

Two U of G Students Selected for Prestigious National Research Council Program

Two University of Guelph students are among 25 women nationwide who have been selected to take part in the National Research Council's (NRC) Women in Engineering and Science Program (WES).
Cynthia Pun, a biological engineering student, and Kelly Ogilvie, a biomedical sciences major and 1999 University of Guelph President's Scholar, were chosen from a total of 103 candidates from across Canada.

Pun and Ogilvie will work with NRC researchers during their co-op work terms over the next three years. In addition to gaining valuable experience in NRC laboratories, they will benefit from being paired with an NRC scientist or engineer who will act as a mentor. Each student will be paid at least $10,000 per work term.

Participation in the WES program has become an annual tradition for U of G students; since 1993/94, a total of 15 students have received this award.

Pun and Ogilvie, who are both in their second year at U of G, are thrilled by their acceptance into the program. "It's a great and unique opportunity," said Ogilvie, who plans to pursue a career in medicine or medical research and hopes for a placement in the brain research lab at the Institute of Biological Science in Ottawa. "The WES program will provide me with research experience and skills that can only be gained inside a laboratory. I am particularly interested in research that will help people with ailments such as Parkinson's disease or brain tumours, to aid them in their recovery or quality of life."

Pun is interested in a career in biomedical engineering and expects the WES program will help shape her future goals. "I was ecstatic when I found out. Biomedical engineering transcends disciplinary boundaries and most certainly will be relevant to future technological advances. It's going to be so exciting to work at the forefront of this type of research."
Introduced in 1991, the WES program is intended to encourage women to pursue research careers in the under-represented fields of engineering, science and mathematics. Individual universities may nominate up to three students each year. The NRC selection committee evaluates and selects candidates according to a number of criteria, including their academic profile, area of specialization and communication skills.

"It's wonderful to see Cynthia and Kelly rewarded for all their hard work with such a tremendous opportunity to advance their studies and embark on promising careers," said University of Guelph president Mordechai Rozanski. "I am very proud to see two more of our students accepted into the Women in Engineering and Science Program. U of G's high level of success in this program over the years is another indication of the quality of our students and our commitment to creating an environment that encourages women to realize their potential in areas such as science and engineering."

Individual universities may nominate up to three students each year. A total of eight students, including Ogilvie and Pun, were selected from Ontario universities.

To arrange a media interview, contact Alex Wooley, Communications and Public Affairs, 519-824-4120, Ext. 6982.

For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs, 824- 4120, Ext. 3338.

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