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    Engineering and Applied Science

    New Vanier Scholars lead the way in research

    A record of six doctoral students earn prestigious Vanier Scholarship.

    Six Queen’s University students have won the 2015 Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship – the most in a single year at Queen’s since the scholarship launched in 2008. In 2014, three Queen’s students earned the prestigious award.

    [Vanier Scholarship Recipients]
     Queen's University's 2015 Vanier Doctoral Scholarship recipients. Clockwise from Top Left: Hannah Dies (Chemical Engineering), James Gardner Gregory (Neuroscience), Catherine Normandeau (Neuroscience), Erica Phipps (Kinesiology), Amanda Shamblaw (Psychology) and Ognen Vangelov (Political Studies).

    The Vanier program, which awards students $50,000 every year for three years, aims to strengthen Canada's ability to attract and retain world-class doctoral students. It also seeks to establish Canada as a global centre of excellence in research and higher learning.

    "Our six new Vanier Scholars exemplify academic achievement, leadership and extraordinary research potential,” says Brenda Brouwer, Vice-Provost and Dean of the School of Graduate Studies. “These talented scholars will not only contribute to the research excellence at Queen’s but also serve as role models and mentors to our research trainees. Congratulations to all winners on their success and best wishes as they focus on research and discovery.”

    Hannah Dies (Chemical Engineering) – A PhD candidate in Biomedical Engineering, Ms. Diesdoctoral research centres on creating a portable sensor that may be used to detect pathogenic biomolecules indicative of various types of cancers and bacterial diseases. Portable biosensors may have the ability to make medical diagnoses quickly and efficiently in remote locations without access to laboratory facilities.

    James Gardner Gregory (Neuroscience) – Mr. Gregory’s research studies the neurophysiology of feeding. Gonadal hormones, such as androgens and estrogens, have been found to be an essential component for determining the motivation behind food consumption. Although hormonal manipulations are frequently observed to alter food consumption, the exact mechanism behind the potent effect of androgens and estrogens on feeding behaviours is relatively unknown.

    Catherine Normandeau (Neuroscience) – Ms. Normandeau’s research aims to identify the cellular changes responsible for the transition from adaptive to maladaptive anxiety. She has focused on a molecule called neurotensin, a peptide found in the brain that has been previously investigated as a possible treatment for schizophrenia. In previous studies, blocking neurotensin has led to a significant reduction in pathological anxiety.  Since anxiety and depression so often occur together, this research also explores whether neurotensin might be involved in depression.

    Erica Phipps (Kinesiology & Health Studies​) – Ms. Phipps’ doctoral research as a Vanier Scholar will focus on environmental influences on health. She aims to expand upon her previous work as executive director of the Canadian Partnership for Children’s Health and Environment and the work of environmental health equity advocates across the country. Ms. Phipps sees her doctoral research as the chance to apply a “structured and methodological way of learning” to issues that she has already encountered in the field.

    Amanda Shamblaw (Psychology) – Ms. Shamblaw’s research interest focuses on the intergenerational transmission of depression. She examines how physical touch, vocal characteristics, and talking about the minds of others contribute to this relationship. For her doctoral research, set to start in the fall, she will extend her research to focus on infants, in particular how postpartum depression affects infant attachment through both reciprocal attachment and infant neurological factors.

    Ognen Vangelov (Political Studies) – Mr. Vangelov’s doctoral research focuses on the problem of “un-democratization.” In his own words, un-democratization is the current process of democratic regression, and he intends to take a closer look at the phenomenon using Hungary and Macedonia as examples.

    For more information, visit the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships website.


    Finding opportunities at the Engineering and Technology Fair

    [Engineering and Technology Fair]
    The Engineering and Technology Fair, and more than 50 employers from the public and private sectors, returns to Grant Hall Tuesday and Wednesday. (University Communications)

    Queen's University students will have the opportunity to make contacts that can lead to summer employment or even a future career at the Engineering and Technology Fair.

    The annual event returns to Grant Hall and will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 20 and Wednesday, Oct. 21 from 10:30 am-3:30 pm each day. Hosted by Career Services at Queen’s the fair brings together more than 50 employers from a wide range of industries in both the public and private sectors.

    The event is also an opportunity for a selected group of students to showcase projects they are working on through the university.

    Among the students presenting is Natasha Baziuk, a member of the winning team from this year’s Queen’s Innovation Connector Summer Initiative. Gryllies is a small business that seeks to off-set beef consumption with cricket protein to create a more nutritious and environmentally sustainable way to enjoy popular meat dishes like pasta sauce, chili, and lasagna.

    Several of the founding members, including Ms. Baziuk, have chosen to pursue Gryllies as a full-time venture upon graduation.

    “Having the Engineering and Technology Fall Fair acknowledge and encourage entrepreneurship as a viable career choice for graduating students is wonderful to see,” says Ms. Baziuk. “Entrepreneurship is imperative in supporting the local economy, in stimulating innovation, and in student's having the freedom and courage to pursue their own life’s path when they are young and are more able to take on the risk involved in start-up companies. Gryllies is very happy to be a showcase of what is possible when one takes on the entrepreneurial path upon graduation.”

    She adds that it will be an interesting return as last year she attended the event as a fourth-year student looking for a job. This time around she says she’s excited about the opportunity to talk to other employers about Gryllies and any advice they may offer.

    Also presenting is Morgan Litschko of the Queen’s Genetically Engineered Machine, a student run team that undertakes an innovative set of projects in the field of synthetic biology each year. The team recently earned a gold medal at the International Genetically Engineered Machine competition in Cambridge, Mass.

    Ms. Litschko says the Engineering and Technology Fair is a chance for the group to present their work to their peers, attract future members, and generate ideas for future work.

    “This portion of the fair also highlights the innovation of student teams and the potential of these endeavors,” she says. “There is a lot of creativity and dedication associated with these projects and this provides the opportunity to generate industry connections for individuals as well as the team. In essence, we put a lot of time and hard work into what we’ve done and this is a chance to share our accomplishments with others.”

    Last year, three out of the four students who presented were able to secure summer employment from employers at the fair. The fair is held annually in October and January.  Follow #careerfairqueens on Twitter for updates and info about this event.

    Building on a strong tradition

    At the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, nearly a third of all students entering the first-year common program – 32.3% – are female.

    [FEAS Orientation]
    In the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science's common program, nearly a third of all students in the Class of 2019 are female. (University Communications) 

    And while other universities might celebrate this as a goal, in Queen’s Engineering this is seen as a process – continually building on an existing strong tradition.

    However, the faculty doesn’t preferentially target female students in its offers, says Associate Dean (Academic) Lynann Clapham. In fact the percentage of female applicants to the program is virtually identical to the percentage of overall admissions. There is no bias favouring anyone, she says.

    Instead, students are drawn by the faculty’s reputation of excellence, and strong track record of being a welcoming and supportive place to study.

    “If you look back, traditionally Queen’s Engineering has, at least for the past 12-15 years, has had a higher proportion of women applying than other major engineering programs across the country,” Dr. Clapham says. “It is part of the Queen’s Engineering 10 point Student Success Model, which we highlight during recruiting. I think that tends, in addition to our strong academic reputation, to promote women coming here – they know that this is a great place for women engineers to grow and flourish. It’s kind of success breeds success to a certain extent.”

    It also helps that many of the volunteers for recruiting fairs are female students who can be seen as role models for high school girls looking to pursue an education in engineering. 

    “Our female students tend to volunteer more frequently than the guys do, and they are keen and they’re enthusiastic,” she says. “People see that and say ‘Wow, I’m really impressed by the women who are in Queen’s Engineering.’ We also have a huge diversity within our female engineering population, so high school girls see a reflection of themselves, and think ‘Hey – I could do engineering too.’”     

    That diversity is key not only for engineering but also the profession, adds Dean Kimberly Woodhouse. 

    “It’s important to the profession to have a diversity of thought and ideas and part of that diversity comes through gender diversity,” she says. 

    Another reason there are more young women turning to engineering is that there is a growing realization that engineering is a rewarding profession where one can make a difference. 

    “It’s a phenomenal profession for women and women make outstanding engineers. For me personally, it’s a wonderful career. I’ve been in industry, I’ve been in academia, I am engineer and I love it,” Dean Woodhouse says, adding that there still remains room for growth. “I’d like to see better gender representation because I think there are a lot of women who don’t realize what a great profession engineering is. That’s the story we need to tell, but you have to make the environment welcoming as well.”

    Queen’s has long offered a welcoming environment, says Dr. Clapham, where the focus is on “create, collaborate and communicate.” Engineering students at Queen’s are encouraged to work together rather than compete against each other.

    That appeals to many students, including  Julie Tseng (Sc’16), the president of the Queen’s Engineering Society, who says she was naturally drawn to engineering by her own inquisitiveness about how things work, why processes are done a certain way and whether or not they can be done more efficiently.

    “Engineers often get the opportunity to ask and answer these three questions in the problems they encounter, and that is what drew me to the profession,” she says. “The engineering student experience at Queen’s goes one important step further than teaching students how to ask the right questions and design the right answers. It encourages collaboration between students through a strong sense of community, spirit, and tradition.” 

    Ms. Tseng also points out that the engineering program offers a series of courses – the Engineering Design and Practice Sequence – that aims to teach and exercise fundamental practical engineering skills. She sees that as a core strength of Queen’s Engineering.

    “This series, nicknamed the ‘design spine,’ follows students from first year to graduation and reinforces that communicating an idea is just as important as coming up with it,” she explains. “As a result, the program excels at helping students strike a balance between technical skills and professional skills – creating well-rounded students.”

    Political platforms just a swipe away

    Want to brush-up on the various election platforms before voting on Oct. 19? Queen’s students have developed Politips, an app that allows users to discover key points from the party platforms without sifting through reams of documents and news coverage.

    [Politips founders]
    Pamela Simpson, Artsci'17, (right) and Kaily Schell, Artsci'15, are the founders of Politips, an app that delivers information about the election platforms of the federal political parties.

    “Our team is passionate about getting more Canadians, especially young people, engaged in the political process,” says Pamela Simpson, Artsci’17, chief executive officer of Politips. “Recognizing that inaccessible information is a major barrier to electoral participation, we decided to create an app to deliver accurate information in an easily understandable and non-partisan manner.”

    Ms. Simpson, who is studying politics, was in class last March when the discussion turned to voter apathy among young people. As she scanned the classroom, she saw her classmates on their cellphones. That’s when she had the idea of creating an app that would appeal to voters her age.

    “We see our app as laying the foundation for discussion. We did a lot of beta testing and found that users want to scroll and get a general idea of the most contested points,” she says.

    [Screenshot of Politips app]
    A screenshot from the Poltips app.

    Ms. Simpson teamed up with Kaily Schell, Artsci’15, who is the chief marketing officer of the company.  Iain McKenzie, Sc’17, is the chief technology officer, while Justin Taub, Artsci’17, is providing research support. Peter Li, a student at OCAD University, is working on the graphic design of the app, and Zach Buck, an alumnus of the University of Toronto, is editing the material.

    The Politips team scrambled to launch its app after the election writ was issued surprisingly early on Aug. 4. With Ms. Simpson still in Japan on an internship, the team collaborated over Skype. They managed to release the app in late August, and they have been adding platform points as parties unveil them. Jonathan Rose, an associate professor in the Department of Political Studies, has agreed to serve as an advisor on the project.

    Politips also received support from the QyourVenture program offered by Queen’s Innovation Connector. Members of Politips had the opportunity to attend the same lectures and workshops offered to students participating in the QIC Summer Initiative program.  

    The company also worked out of Launch Lab, Kingston’s regional innovation centre, inside Innovation Park at Queen’s University. QIC and Launch Lab have formed a partnership to nurture innovation and entrepreneurship demonstrated by students like those involved in Politips.

    Ms. Simpson says the team has learned a lot over the last few months. The company hopes to expand the app to incorporate future provincial and municipal elections.

    Politips is now available for download through the App Store on Apple mobile devices.  

    Tapping into student initiative

    A new iPhone app developed by Queen’s University students is aimed at helping new arrivals find their way around campus.

    [Q Tap]
    Designed by a pair of Queen's engineering students, QTap is an iPhone app aimed at helping first-year students get around campus.

    Initially developed as a class assignment during their first-year studies, Rony Besprozvanny (Sc’18) and Zach Yale (Sc’18) have created QTap, an app designed to make getting around campus a little easier for first-year students.

    QTap incorporates a user-friendly interface to display class schedules, operating hours for on-campus buildings, and helpful contact information phone numbers. Using Apple Maps, the app also includes a basic web view of directions between campus buildings.

    “It is great to see this creativity and initiative from our students. This is a fantastic example of experiential learning, where real-world applications of technology are linked to the classroom,” says Bo Wandschneider, CIO and Associate Vice-Principal.

    Building on previous relationships between Information Technology Services (ITS) and the Faculty of Engineering, Brian Frank (Electrical Engineering) approached ITS with the project. Over the summer, ITS supported the student-led initiative by funding the further development of the app so that it could be used by all Queen’s students.

    “Our inspiration for QTap came from the fact that we wanted to create something that filled all the confusion and gaps that we experienced as first years in understanding our schedules and knowing where to go for our classes,” Mr. Besprozvanny said. “With this is mind I think we've designed an app that will really benefit all Queen’s students. As a result I am most excited about the ‘Dashboard’ and ‘Campus’ features and how they can be used side by side to provide a seamless yet powerful experience.”

    Mr. Yale also hopes the app will alleviate the stress that first-year students experience navigating class schedules and getting around campus.

    “I'm most excited about the 'Dashboard' feature. Before QTap, students would have to screenshot their schedule on SOLUS to know what classes they had coming up next,” he says. “People would have to use their schedule as their phone background, or scramble around through their pictures at the end of their class to find their schedule. With the 'Dashboard', all it takes is one tap on your homescreen to instantly see your schedule, and your upcoming classes. I personally think that's the most exciting aspect of QTap.”

    Starting this fall semester, QTap will be available for free for users with an iPhone 4s or greater running iOS 8.0 or higher through the Apple App Store for those who want to download the app. While QTap is not an official source of information from Queen’s University, it is a great complementary tool to assist new students learning how to get around campus. The app has seen some success with approximately 1,800 active users since its launch on Sept. 13. The developers are looking for feedback on users’ experience. Feedback can be submitted to qtap@queensu.ca.

    Royal recognition

    Five Queen's University professors elected as fellows to the Royal Society of Canada.

    Five Queen's University professors have been elected as fellows to the Royal Society of Canada (RSC), one of the highest honours for Canadian academics in the arts, humanities, and social and natural sciences. The five newest fellows from Queen's have a wide variety of research interests, including health, chemistry, computing and music composition.

    Five Queen's University professors have been elected as fellows to the Royal Society of Canada (RSC). They are, from left: Keith Poole (Microbiology), Elizabeth Eisenhauer (Oncology), Marjan Mozetich (Music),Suning Wang (Chemistry) and Ugo Piomelli (Mechanical and Materials Engineering).

    "The five newly elected fellows have all made important contributions to their respective fields and are a testament to Queen's commitment to excellence in research," says Principal Daniel Woolf. "I wish to congratulate, on behalf of the Queen's community, these researchers on this tremendous and well-deserved honour."

    The five new RSC members include:

    Elizabeth Eisenhauer (Oncology), a leader in the investigation of cancer drug delivery and cancer clinical trials. Dr. Eisenhauer’s work has led to new standards of cancer treatment and new understandings of how the molecular mechanisms of cancer can be altered by therapeutic invention. From 2006-2009, Dr. Eisenhauer served as president of the National Cancer Institute of Canada, and in 2013, she was elected a fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.

    "It is an honour, of course, to be elected to the Royal Society of Canada," says Dr. Eisenhauer, "especially for work that I love."

    Marjan Mozetich (Music), an award-winning composer who has uniquely blended elements of modern and classical music to develop a fusion style both innovative and accessible to all types of audiences. He has written more than 65 works of vocal and instrumental combinations for theatre, film, dance, as well as symphonic works, chamber music and solo pieces that have been performed around the world. He has received numerous Canadian and international awards and honours for his compositions.

    "I feel very privileged to be recognized by my colleagues," says Dr. Mozetich. "To have what I do, as a creative, be given credence and importance by my colleagues in the arts and sciences is a tremendous honour."

    Ugo Piomelli (Mechanical and Materials Engineering), a world expert in the area of fluid dynamics.  He has made fundamental contributions to the profession by developing numerical models capable of predicting turbulent flows, and by successfully applying these methods to increase the understanding of the turbulence physics. The models he developed are commonly used by the industrial and research communities, including aerospace, mechanical and environmental engineering, in geophysics and meteorology.

    "I am honoured, truly honoured, to be recognized by my peers for my work," says Dr. Piomelli.

    Keith Poole (Microbiology), a highly respected scholar who has made fundamental contributions to understanding the interplay between basic bacterial physiology and infectious disease. Importantly, he discovered a family of antibiotic pumps that export multiple antimicrobials out of the bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa. These so-called multidrug pumps are common in disease-causing bacteria, and their discovery has revolutionized the field of antimicrobial chemotherapy and resistance and influenced antibiotic development in the pharmaceutical industry.

    "I've never done this for accolades. I'm a scientist and, like my peers, am motivated by curiosity," says Dr. Poole. "However, to have an audience of those same peers acknowledge my work is a tremendous honour."

    Suning Wang (Chemistry), a researcher whose innovative approaches to luminescent materials and inorganic chemistry has contributed to opening up a significant new research field: photo-responsive organoboron materials and chemistry. Her studies on the phenomena of photochromism, photoelimination and switchable luminescence of organoboron systems, together with her pioneering scholarship on blue fluorescent and blue phosphorescent emitters for organic light emitting diodes have reinvigorated research on organoboron photochemistry and organoboron-based materials chemistry worldwide.

    "I'm very honoured to be elected into the Royal Society of Canada," says Dr. Wang. "Recognition by one's peers is the highest honour a scientist can receive."

    The Royal Society of Canada is the senior and most prestigious academic society in Canada. Members represent a wide range of academic fields, including the arts, social and natural sciences and humanities. Candidates can be nominated by existing members, seconded by at least two others, or by one of the society's member institutions. Existing members of the society then vote to elect the next cohort of fellows. Election to the society is considered one of the highest honours in Canadian academia.

    The RSC serves to promote Canadian research and scholarly accomplishment, to recognize academic and artistic excellence, and to advise governments, non-governmental organizations and Canadians on matters of public interest. For more information, visit the RSC website

    Queen’s surveillance expert makes an impact

    Sociology professor David Lyon one of three finalists for national award. 

    Queen’s University Sociology professor David Lyon, an international leader in Surveillance Studies, has been named one of three finalists for the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Insight Award. These awards are amongst the highest achievements given annually by SSHRC. 

    The Insight Award, one of five awards under the Impact Awards portfolio, recognises an individual or team whose research has made significant contribution to knowledge and understanding about people, societies and the world. Additionally, their research must have a demonstrable impact both within the academic community and in the broader public.

    David Lyon
    Queen's Sociology professor, Dr. David Lyon, has been selected as a finalist for the 2015 SSHRC Impact Award, Insight category.

    “It’s certainly very gratifying to be selected as a finalist for an Impact Award and especially encouraging for the team with which I work and the Surveillance Studies Centre that I direct,” says Dr. Lyon.

    “Our research addresses key social science issues — the place of the human in the digital world, particularly questions of control and privacy — and also urgent public issues concerning surveillance that are in the daily headlines.”

    Dr. Lyon, who serves as director of the Surveillance Studies Centre and is the Queen's Research Chair in Surveillance Studies, was nominated for his work as one of the world’s leading thinkers on surveillance and the implications of having personal data collected and analyzed by organizations. He has been credited with spearheading the development and growth of surveillance studies as a worldwide, interdisciplinary field and bringing attention to the need for balance in the analysis of surveillance measures.

    “Dr. Lyon’s research has demonstrated tremendous value and influence both within the academic community as well as in the broader public sphere,” says Steven Liss, Vice-Principal (Research). “In an ever-more connected world, Dr. Lyon’s research is timely and relevant to the ongoing need to balance security with concern for civil liberties.”

    As well as his extensive writings for academic journals, Dr. Lyon also makes his research accessible to a broader popular audience. He is regularly asked to comment on security issues by national and international media outlets and is recognized by governments and NGOs as a leading expert on surveillance issues. The winners of the SSHRC Impact Awards will be publicly announced at a ceremony in Ottawa on November 16. For more information, visit the SSHRC website

    Queen’s University opens unique research facility

    New laboratory supports the development of safe nuclear power for Canada.

    • The new Reactor Materials Testing Laboratory.
    • This unique piece of equipment is called the FEI Osiris transmission electron microscope.
    • Mark Daymond explains the accelerator ion source.
    • Mitch Mattucci, MASc candidate, works with the target chamber.
    • Qingshan Dong, PhD candidate, works with the transmission electron microscope.
    • Mark Daymond explains the high voltage tank that is part of the accelerator.
    • Professor Emeritus Rick Holt talks about the efforts to make the RMTL a reality.
    • Principal Daniel Woolf speaks during an event at Queen's University for the RMTL.

    Today the Queen’s University Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science officially opened the new $17 million Reactor Materials Testing Laboratory. The facility is a new research endeavor for the Queen’s Nuclear Materials Group in the Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering. The goal of the RMTL is supporting the development of safe and economical nuclear power for Canada.

    “Thanks to the support of Canada Foundation for Innovation and the Ministry of Research and Innovation, the RMTL is a state-of-the-art facility which will allow for new and exciting advancements in nuclear power research,” says Steven Liss, Vice-Principal (Research). These advancements will in turn attract researchers from around the world to the RMTL, building the university’s reputation as a research leader, as well as allow us to foster relationships with collaborators and industrial partners in the field.”

    The project was conceived and lead by Rick Holt until his retirement as NSERC/UNENE Industrial Research Chair in Nuclear Materials in 2012 and is now led by Mark Daymond, current NSERC/UNENE Industrial Research Chair in Nuclear Materials, and Canada Research Chair in Mechanics of Materials.

    Metals behave quite differently in a nuclear power reactor environment than in more conventional applications. The RMTL will use accelerator technology to allow researchers to investigate how materials respond to stress and temperature inside a nuclear reactor, leading to the safer and more efficient design and maintenance of nuclear reactors.

    “Internationally there is continued strong investment in nuclear power,” says Kimberly Woodhouse, Dean, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science. “This is an exciting opportunity for the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science and our students, particularly our graduate students who now have access to a world-class facility in which to conduct their research.”

    Similar accelerators are quite common around the world – but the combination of RMTL’s dedicated capabilities and the strong nuclear materials research group at Queen’s which has been assembled under the Industrial Research Chair program to exploit these capabilities is unique.

    “The uniqueness of this facility is a testament to the innovative approaches being used by the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science to enable world-leading research and to educate our students” says Dr. Daymond (Mechanical and Materials Engineering).

    Funding for the RMTL was provided by the Canada Foundation for Innovation, Ministry of Research and Innovation, in-kind donations and Queen’s matching funds.

    Partners in the project include: McMaster University, University of Western Ontario, Royal Military College, University of Toronto, the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (Canada), Imperial College and Manchester University (United Kingdom), Pennsylvania State University (United States) the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organization. The project was endorsed by Ontario Power Generation Inc., the CANDU Owners Group Inc., the University Network of Excellence in Nuclear Engineering (UNENE) and Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (now Canadian Nuclear Laboratories).

    For more information visit the website.

    Reactor Materials Laboratory from Queen's Engineering on Vimeo.

    People of Queen's: Finding a ‘forever home’

    [Karen Logan]
    Karen Logan, Development Officer with Stewardship, part of Queen's University’s Office of Advancement, has found her “forever home” in Kingston. (University Communications)

    Karen Logan remembers what she said to her husband when he asked her if she wanted to move to Kingston. “I said ‘yeah, that would be fun,’” the Ottawa-native recalls with a laugh. 

    But she also admits that she never expected they would stay. 

    Though a Queen’s graduate with a fondness for the city (“I’m a nerdy tri-colour bleeding person – I do oil thighs at the drop of a hat!”), Ms. Logan (Artsci’94) had already lived in Hamilton and Calgary with her husband as he pursued advanced degrees in psychology. She expected his position in Kingston to be equally short-lived. 

    Not long after arriving, she heard about a job as a development officer with the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science and decided she would apply. 

    “It was totally a shot in the dark,” Ms. Logan says, explaining that while she didn’t have a background in fundraising, she had worked in project management for an oil and gas company in Calgary and with Canadian Blood Services in Hamilton. 

    “They really took a chance on me,” she says. 

    It was a chance that paid off: Ms. Logan took to the work instantly. “I learned that fundraising is really about connecting people with their passion,” she says warmly. “People want to do something, they want to make a change. We can help make it happen. It doesn’t get better than that.” 

    Fifteen years later, Ms. Logan is still with Queen’s – though she has moved from fundraising into stewardship, which she describes as “recognizing and celebrating donors.” As a Development Officer with Stewardship (part of the university’s Office of Advancement), Ms. Logan says her days can include anything from writing a stewardship report for the university’s most generous benefactors, the Baders, to visiting the Queen’s University Biological Station, to updating the Benefactors Wall in Stauffer Library. 

    “I get to meet and work with all sorts of interesting people right across campus,” she explains. “We get to learn a little about everything. It’s really fun.” 

    But as much as she enjoys her work, Ms. Logan is particularly grateful for her colleagues, describing them as an “amazing bunch of people.” When she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012, it was her colleagues in Advancement who put forward a team in Ms. Logan’s name, “K. Lo’s Krew,” for Kingston’s annual Run for the Cure. Undergoing chemotherapy at the time, Ms. Logan recalls wondering if the team might raise $5,000 for the charity. By race day, they had raised $50,000. 

    “It was like being surrounded by a big, pink, fluffy hug,” Ms. Logan says of the support. “It was almost overwhelming!” 

    Her namesake team continues to run in the annual fundraiser. 

    Ms. Logan, meanwhile, is pleased to call Kingston her “forever home” (“at least until retirement!”) and speaks with gratitude of the opportunity to do work she enjoys with people she loves. 

    “I think it would be hard to fundraise for another university,” she admits, “because you have to be passionate about the cause. But it’s easy for me to talk about this place. I had a sense of community when I was here as a student and I still have it today.” 

    Math Quest: A winning formula

    [Math Quest]
    Camp organizers Siobhain Broekhoven, Carly Rozins and Natalie Corneau are eager for this year's program to begin. (University Communications)












    Those who don’t typically associate mathematics with fun and games have likely never attended Math Quest, an all-girls math camp sponsored by the Canadian Mathematical Society and the Queen’s University Department of Mathematics and Statistics.

    Starting Monday, Math Quest, a four-day residential program, is where high-school aged young women interested in mathematics come together to learn new and exciting ways of applying mathematical skills.

    “I think it’s important to try and reach those kids who enjoy math, or who could enjoy math and really want to be challenged, because I don’t think there’s really anything else like this out there,” says Carly Rozins, a PhD candidate studying evolutionary game theory and one of the camp’s organizers. “It’s an opportunity to meet like-minded girls as well.”

    Based on the diversity of programming, Math Quest truly stands alone.

    Participants will experience an Amazing Race across campus solving math clues and riddles at each location, program their own Lego robots, and even look at the mathematics of salsa dancing.

    The activities are exciting and innovative, as the camp’s staff look for new ways to apply theoretical mathematics across the different branches of the discipline.

    “It’s also activity-based, so they’ll have lots of hands-on activities and experiences – it’s all applications of math, so you can see how your classroom knowledge applies,” says Natalie Corneau, one of the camp’s instructors.

    Participants have the chance to learn from graduate students, doctors, and “mathemagicians” from all different walks of mathematics – from game theorists, to algebraic experts.

    While fostering a deeper love and appreciation for math, the program also serves as an introduction for many to the Queen’s and Kingston communities. This year, participants will take up a block of Leggett Hall, getting a taste of the Queen’s residence experience.

    According to camp director Siobhain Broekhoven, it’s the connections and bonds created at camp that make it such a special place to be, and it all starts with a love of mathematics.

    “We ask the applicants why they want to come to Math Quest and the top reason is ‘I really love math and I want to know more’. We have girls coming from BC, one from the Sunshine Coast – you can’t come from much farther than that in the country,” she says. “I remember last year, when we were finishing up the camp, we asked if there was anybody who wanted to share their e-mail who wanted to stay in touch with each other – and every single girl did.”

    The love of math that each and every instructor and organizer at the camp has is infectious, and the relationships fostered are seamlessly facilitated through engaging mathematical quests.

    Math Quest promises to be an exciting opportunity for those who love working with numbers, equations and formulas.

    It all adds up.


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