On April 30, 2014, high school students across the GTA gathered to attend the Sanofi BioGENEius Challenge Canada awards ceremony held in the George Vari Engineering Building at Ryerson University. It was a great opportunity for students to showcase their poster projects to family, friends, judges, and other distinguished guests.
Guest blog by Vaidehee Lanke, SBCC Saskatchewan 2014 Competitor
When I first learned about the Sanofi BioGENEius Challenge Canada (SBCC), I was fascinated by the new possibilities science presents to the world. From the beginning I was very intrigued by biotechnology, an area of science that seemed endless to me, making it interesting to see the impact it had on people. The moment when I realized I could make a real difference for the world was the motivational point for me. The SBCC has presented me with a challenge outside of school, let’s call it my debut in the science world.
We interviewed Ted Paranjothy, a multi-year SBCC alumnus, and a “triple crown winner” – winning the regional, national, and international competitions – of the SBCC in 2007. His winning project studied an innovative cancer treatment that he continued to work on and commercialize beyond the SBCC. Ted tells us more about this project, his challenges and successes, and why the SBCC is a unique opportunity for youth to develop professional skills and career direction.
Uliana Kovaltchouk was involved with the SBCC from 2008-2010, through grades 10, 11, and 12. In 2009, she submitted her project, “Molecular Insights on DNA Uptake and Transit Pathways in Saccharomyces cerevisiae,” a continuation of a project that she started in 2007.
What are you doing now?
Currently, I am in my 4th year of my Bachelor of Science degree majoring in Microbiology and Chemistry at the University of Manitoba. As a part of my degree, I am currently working in the Court lab examining mitochondrial protein complexes in Neurospora crassa.
Adamo Young is an Ottawa high school student who participated in the SBCC for the first time last year. His project, “Emerging Fusarium Chemotypes: Threats to Crop Production,” won first place at the regional competition, and he is looking forward to participating in the SBCC again this year.
Among his success at the SBCC, Adamo has participated in other science fairs, and has even had some of his research published. In this interview, Adamo tells us about his experience with the SBCC, what it’s like to have his research published, and some advice for students who want to submit a project to the SBCC.
We are pleased to share another interview with a SBCC alumna, Krishna Modi, whose project with her three other partners won 5th place in the 2010 GTA regional competition when she was in grade 12. Krishna and her project partners were the first SBCC participants from their high school. Mentored by Dr. Yeger and Dr. Antoon at The Hospital for Sick Children, their project, ‘In vitro comparison on effects of curcumin, 6-gingerol, quercetin, kaempferol and catechin on pancreatic adenocarcinoma,’ assessed the effectiveness of combinations of dietary compounds as a treatment on pancreatic cancer cells. Read more
Guest blog by Adrian Chan, 2009 and 2010 SBCC alumnus
The SBCC is a huge time commitment for high school students who already have to juggle school, part-time jobs, and other extra-curricular studies. You’ll have to work out a schedule that fits both yours and the lab members’ since you will need supervision and assistance with your project. At times, it may be difficult to manage all your commitments but be assured that the SBCC experience will prove valuable to your future academic and career goals. The best thing to do is to focus on your end goal and not to worry about the small things. At times it’ll feel like you’re being pulled in many directions, but if you pause to reflect about your reason for joining the SBCC and the tremendous experience you’re gaining, you’ll be able to prioritize the things you want to do. Read more