News Release Article from  Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Government of Canada invests in the country's most promising young researchers

The 2015-16 Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships and Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships recipients will develop innovative research that will support a strong middle class

October 3, 2016 – Ottawa, Ontario – Canadian Institutes of Health Research

The Government of Canada values the role that young researchers play in producing the knowledge, discoveries and innovations that help build a strong, healthy middle class. That is why the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science, and the Honourable Jane Philpott, Minister of Health, announced 166 new Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship recipients and 70 new Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship recipients. These awards, which are Canada's most prestigious awards for doctoral students and post-doctoral fellows, demonstrate the government's $34.7 million commitment to attracting and retaining the best young doctoral students and post-doctoral fellows in Canada and from around the world. The specialties of these researchers span health sciences, natural sciences and engineering, and social sciences and humanities.

The extraordinary research being conducted by the following three researchers illustrates the range of disciplines being supported:

  • Vanier Scholar Yasmine Hajar at the University of Ottawa is examining how electricity can speed up the movement of chemicals that react with methane gas, which could then lead to the development of low-cost fuel for vehicles and a reduction of air pollution.
  • Vanier Scholar Erin Hetherington at the University of Calgary is studying which social support systems best help women avoid postpartum depression after they have given birth.
  • Banting Postdoctoral Fellow Julien Lefort-Favreau at Université de Sherbrooke will research how, since 1959, editors of various publications in France helped intellectuals communicate political thoughts that led to significant social change for the country's citizens.

Quick facts

  • Both the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships program and the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships programs are funded through the three federal research granting agencies: the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC).


"I congratulate all recipients of this year's Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships and Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships. This investment represents our government's commitment to support emerging researchers whose hard work will help put our country at the forefront of scientific discovery while equipping them with the skills they need to join a strong middle class."
The Honourable Kirsty Duncan
Minister of Science

"I'm proud to support the world's most promising young research talent in Canada, so that our country remains a leader in discovery and applied research. I congratulate the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholars and Banting Postdoctoral Fellows and wish them continued success with their research that will benefit the health of all Canadians."
The Honourable Jane Philpott
Minister of Health

"The federal research agencies – CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC – are proud to support the prestigious Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships and the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships. Through these programs we are supporting the creation of Canada's next generation of researchers whose work will have a tremendous positive influence on the wellbeing of citizens from around the world."
Dr. Alain Beaudet
President, Canadian Institutes of Health Research

"We are proud that these rising stars call the University of Ottawa their home. Thanks to these scholarships, these emerging researchers will get to expand their horizons and participate in some of the most transformative research in Canada."
Dr. Mona Nemer
Vice-President, Research, University of Ottawa 

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Véronique Perron
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Kristy Duncan

Media Relations
Canadian Institutes of Health Research

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