Local students tackle three-minute-theses


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This article was published 27/04/2022 (401 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Three students from Winnipeg South made it to the finals of the University of Manitoba’s 10th annual Three-Minute-Thesis competition.

The competition gives graduate-level students a chance to present their research for the opportunity to participate in the western regional competition. The catch is that contestants need to condense months, or sometimes years, of research into a short, concise presentation. The students must grab the attention of the panel of judges and communicate their complex ideas effectively — not an easy task in three minutes.

This year I was excited to see that three of the 12 finalists in the U of M’s competition are from my home riding.

Shayna Giesbrecht finished second in the University of Manitoba’s Three-Minute-Thesis competition, which earned a prize of $1,250.

Chitra Sivakumar is a PhD student in the biosystems engineering program at the U of M. Her presentation looked at how we can incorporate pulse flour into our diets. This flour is made from legumes such as peas, lentils, and beans, and it is more eco-friendly, nutritious, and less expensive than all-purpose flour. Chitra’s research will improve the milling process to make pulse flour accessible for every pantry.

Daniel Schwade Arujo is a PhD student in applied health sciences. His research studies the risk of cardiovascular disease in older women. He focuses on different “phenotypes,” or body types, of older women to see how this relates to the likelihood of developing diseases of the heart. His research will help doctors prescribe the best treatment for women at risk of cardiovascular disease, based on their specific body types.

Last, Shayna Giesbrecht is a master’s degree student in microbiology. Her research focuses on how wastewater can be used to track infectious diseases. During the COVID-19 pandemic, researchers have been examining wastewater to track the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 in communities. Shayna builds on this research to show how wastewater can be used to track the frequency of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in a community. Public health departments can then use this data to target health programs and benefits to communities that need them the most.

Among the 12 finalists, Shayna’s presentation placed second, winning her the UM Retirees Association prize of $1,250.

These three talented students show that young people in Winnipeg South are thriving in academics. I cannot wait to see their research move on to the next stage, and to see other bright students from Winnipeg South achieve great things in the coming years.

The western regionals are being held this year at the University of Winnipeg on May 6. It will be the first in-person competition held since 2019, and I encourage anyone interested learning about innovative student-led research to attend.

Terry Duguid

Terry Duguid
Winnipeg South constituency report

Terry Duguid is the Liberal MP for Winnipeg South.

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