Queen’s graduate student a finalist in research storytelling competition

Campus Update

Queen’s graduate student a finalist in research storytelling competition

PhD student Laura Killam showcases her work about co-creation in nursing education.

By Catarina Chagas, Research Outreach and Events Specialist

April 10, 2024


Research has impact beyond academia, which is why communicating research outside universities’ campuses is so important. Each year, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) invites postsecondary students to tell their research stories in three minutes or 300 words, emphasizing how their projects can make a difference in the lives of Canadians.

In March, the SSHRC Storytellers Challenge announced its finalists for 2024, including Queen’s PhD student in the School of Nursing Laura Killam. Each of the 20 finalists will receive a $3,000 award and get the chance to present their work at this years’ Science Writers and Communicators of Canada Conference on May 6 in Saskatoon. A panel of judges will then select five winning storytellers, who will receive an additional prize of $1,000.

“Summarizing a PhD dissertation in 3 minutes was quite challenging. It was hard to let go of some of the things that are important to me like explaining my methodology and results in more depth and skip to the impact of the research,” says Killam, who is a member of the Queen’s School of Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs.

“Engaging in this exercise has been very valuable for my ability to communicate with wider audiences. Effective storytelling is crucial for my research as it helps convey the significance and potential impact of my findings to key stakeholders.”

– Laura Killam, PhD student

Queen’s School of Nursing

Laura Killam

Killam’s PhD research focuses on making higher education, and particularly nursing education, more inclusive and meaningful for students. For this, she believes educators need to work with students to co-create learning. “When students and educators work together as partners it creates a situation where everyone is engaged and contributing to learning,” she explains.

Upon completion of her research and graduation this fall, Killam, who is a nurse educator at Cambrian College and Nipissing University, expects to connect with decision makers, educators, and students to inspire change in higher education. “I will be advocating for systematic change to improve how students and educators work together to accomplish meaningful learning that translates to success in the real-world,” she says.

To learn more about the SSHRC Storytellers Challenge and view finalists’ video submissions, visit the website. Five winners will be selected on May 6, 2024.

Campus Updates
Health Sciences