Hannah Ramsay smiling and looking at camera
Hannah Ramsay
  • Gratituesday

Combining research and teaching for change

Hannah Ramsay, Sc'16, B.Ed'17, PhD'21

Hannah Ramsay is working to change the way we treat cancer.

Hannah, the recipient of the Chancellor’s Scholarship, is in her fifth year of the MD/PhD program within the Queen's School of Medicine, a highly prestigious program that allows students to combine medical and graduate degrees as the start of their clinician-scientist journey.

In 2021, Hannah completed her PhD work in physical and materials chemistry where she researched a new class of nanosized materials called silver clusters. During her research, she discovered several new clusters that will be used to help develop drugs that can effectively kill cancer cells without damaging healthy tissue.

A recipient of the NESRC Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Doctoral Scholarship and the Ontario Graduate Scholarship, Hannah shared the ways in which Queen’s has given her opportunities she could have never imagined:

"I chose Queen’s for my undergraduate studies because it offered a unique Concurrent Education and Science program through the Faculty of Education. During my studies, I became passionate about studying chemistry and designing efficient solar cells using the same metal nanoclusters that I would end up researching for my PhD. When I finished my Concurrent Education degree, I applied to do my master’s.

It was during my research in the lab of Dr. Kevin Stamplecoskie that we saw some initial studies that were using similar materials to perform combined imaging and therapy to treat disease. I was immediately interested in exploring this application further, and how these materials could advance cancer care. As my research became more clinically focused and translational, I began to appreciate how the work was becoming inextricably tied to medicine and the impact it can have on patient care.

The MD/PhD intensive program provides the opportunity to explore my research interests and clinical interests together. I hope to work as an effective clinician, while also carrying out research that advances our understanding of disease treatment and best practices. My educational and teaching background has been instrumental in helping me take the most away from what I am learning, and I continue to be thankful for the experiences I had in the Concurrent Education program.

I am currently interested in internal medicine and family medicine, and envision my career filled with clinical practice, research, and the opportunity to teach medical students. I am looking forward to a diverse and exciting career ahead.

I am grateful for my time at Queen’s and the support I have received in my studies here. Though I have now been a part of several different faculties, each part of my journey has been a distinct, unique, and engaging academic experience. I am appreciative of all the inspiring professors, friends, and mentors I have met along the way, and the invaluable impacts they have had on my experience at Queen’s and future career."