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Faculty of Arts professors and students featured prominently among 2015 Killam Award winner

Susan Graham, Linda Fedigan and David Dick recognized for outstanding research and leadership


The 2015 Killam teaching and and research award recipients. Left to right: Susan Graham, David Dick, Linda Fedigan, Tannin Schmidt and Gerald Zamponi.

October 21, 2015

The annual Killam reception held on Oct. 19 was a chance for the Killam Trustees and honoured guests to meet the University of Calgary’s Killam Laureates and learn more about their innovative research and academic achievements.

Killam Trustee Jim Dinning said of the event, “As a former chancellor of the University of Calgary, I was very proud to see the incredible quality and breadth of current research coming from the university’s Killam students and scholars.”

The event, co-hosted by Lisa Young, vice-provost and dean, Faculty of Graduate Studies, and Killam Laureate Muhammad Khan, was also a chance for the recipients to thank the trustees one-on-one.

Prominent Canadian businessman Izaak Walton Killam and his wife Dorothy J. Killam established the Killam Trusts to support advanced education and to help in the building of Canada’s future by encouraging advanced research and study. The Killam Trusts constitute the largest private endowment in Canada and the University of Calgary is privileged to be one of the five Killam universities.

Awarded to International and Canadian doctoral students from across all disciplines, the primary Killam award is the Predoctoral Killam scholarship, valued at $36,000 per year and is granted for up to two years. It was Dorothy Killam’s desire to award the scholarship to those students who are most likely to become leaders in their field, or profession. This scholarship will allow them opportunity to reach and even exceed their research and professional goals.

Khan, a second-year recipient of the Killam doctoral scholarship, has found this to be the case: “Being a Killam Laureate has translated into great things for me. It has raised my profile tremendously and even resulted in my supervisor, Karoly Bezdek, co-authoring a book with me. This is a very rare occurrence for PhD students.”

Aubrey Hanson, on top of being awarded the first-year Killam doctoral scholarship, also won the Donald N. Byers Memorial Killam Prize. Hanson earned this distinction for having the best statement and best presented plan of study and research among all of the successful first-year Killam Laureates. A doctoral student in educational research, Hanson focuses on the relationships between indigenous literatures, education, and the resurgence of Indigenous communities.

The Killam Trusts also awarded prizes to faculty members and researchers who have achieved high levels of success and distinction in their research, or who have made meaningful contributions in education. The awards include the Killam Postdoctoral Laureates, Annual Killam Professors, Killam Memorial Chair and the Killam Research and Teaching Awards.

Ann McCaig, University of Calgary Chancellor Emeritus, was present to hand out the university’s first McCaig-Killam Teaching Award. Canada’s Killam Trust named the award in her honour earlier this year, as she stepped down from her role as a trustee after 22 years. McCaig has also been part of the university’s community for over 30 years, making this award for excellence in teaching an appropriate tribute to her contributions.

David Dick, assistant professor in the Department of Philosophy, was selected to receive the McCaig-Killam Teaching Award for his enormously successful approach to teaching that enriches his students’ experience and inspires them to continuously push their intellectual boundaries.

Visit the Killam Trusts for more information. This year’s Killam Scholars and Killam award holders are:

First-Year Scholarships

  • Oscar Aleuy Young, biological sciences
  • Briana Cassetta, clinical psychology
  • Jane Chamberlin, English
  • Hendrik Enders, kinesiology
  • Aubrey Hanson, educational research
  • Matthew Jordan, medical sciences
  • Ian McNairn, anthropology
  • Brendan McAllister, psychology
  • Krysta Powers, biomedical engineering
  • Kyle Wilson, biological sciences

Second-Year Scholarships

  • Marc Bomhof, kinesiology
  • Hayley Brtiz, medical sciences
  • Kelsey Collins, biomedical engineering
  • Leigh Conroy, physics and astronomy
  • Colleen Cuthbert, nursing
  • Basia Ellis, psychology
  • Amin Farshidi, electrical and computer engineering
  • Kyle Hall, chemistry
  • Mark Harding, political science
  • Fatemeh Hendijani fard, electrical and computer engineering
  • Jillian Johnson, psychology
  • Muhammad Khan, mathematics and statistics
  • Matthew Morris, biological sciences
  • Tamara Nerlien, sociology
  • Adrianne Offenbecker, archaeology
  • Josh Rash, clinical psychology

Killam Postdoctoral Laureates

  • 2015-2017 
    Yaser Maddahi, clinical neuroscience
  • 2014-2016 
    Geoff Power, kinesiology 
    Christian Reus, chemistry 
    Barret Kurylyk, geoscience

 Killam Memorial Chair

  • Walter Herzog, kinesiology, engineering, medicine and veterinary medicine

 Killam Annual Professors

  • Braden Manns, nephrology and community health sciences
  • Ina Dobrinski, reproductive and comparative biology and experimental medicine
  • Lawrence Harder, biological sciences
  • Dr. Paul Beck, Gastroenterology
  • Susan Graham, language and cognitive development

 Killam Research and Teaching Awards

  • David Dick, philosophy, McCaig-Killam Teaching Award
  • Susan Graham, psychology, Killam Graduate Supervision and Mentorship Award
  • Gerald Zamponi, physiology and pharmacology, Killam Graduate Supervision and Mentorship Award
  • Ken Lukowiak, physiology and pharmacology, Killam Award in Undergraduate Mentorship
  • Dr. Eric Smith, clinical neurosciences, Killam Emerging Research Leader Award, CIHR
  • Tannin Schmidt, kinesiology, Killam Emerging Research Leader Award, NSERC
  • Linda Fedigan, anthropology and archaeology, Killam Research Excellence Award