McMaster University

McMaster University

OCRiT Youth Outreach

  • 2013
  • 2012
  • 2011



Let’s talk Science Stem Cell Talks gathers Experts in Stem Cell Biology and Ethics to engage

Ontario High School students

March 28th 2013

Hamilton, On. (March 28th 2013) –  At McMaster University Campus, home to some of the most cutting edge discovery and innovation in the biomedical sciences, Ontario high school students will find the opportunity to engage and learn from some of the world’s leading experts in stem cell biology.

The event, the first annual Stem Cell Talks Symposium, is hosted by the McMaster University chapter of Let’s Talk Science; a group composed of graduate student volunteers who spend everyday performing the cutting-edge research that fuels biomedical innovation in Canada.

This year’s event will highlight current and emerging technologies for the treatment of hematopoietic (blood) disease with stem cells.  As well students will learn about the Nobel Prize winning technology termed: Cellular Reprogramming.

Scientists speaking will include Prof. Karun Singh and Kristin Hope.  Dr. Singh completed his post doctoral studies at MIT using neural stem cells to study psychiatric disorders and is now continuing this promising work at McMaster.  Dr. Hope’s research program is focused on dissecting the molecular regulation of normal and malignant blood stem cell self-renewal and hopes to identify the underlying processes that ultimately lead to leukemic transformation and progression.

Students will also learn about the ethical dilemmas regarding stem cells and clinical trials from McMaster Health Care ethics experts.

This exciting event will be held in the McMaster University Student Centre CIBC Hall and run from 9:00 to 3:30pm.


Ryan Mitchell

Head Organizer: Stem Cell Talks Symposium

Ph.D. Candidate

Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute

McMaster University

BASEF 2012

OCRiT sponsors the 52nd Annual Bay Area Science and Engineering Fair (BASEF)

OCRiT sponsored the 52nd Annual Bay Area Science and Engineering Fair (BASEF), held Thursday March 29th through to Saturday March 31st, 2012 at Mohawk College in Hamilton, Ontario. More than 300 projects entered the fair this year, representing more than 460 students. The 2012 winners of the two OCRiT-SCCRI Regenerative Medicine Awards were: (1) Manjot Sangha (Iroquois Ridge High School) and Dennis Xu (Abbey Park High School) for their work on "Construction of Folate Conjugated Antibodies to Target Shigella flexneri to Specifically Infect Colorectal Cancer Cells" and (2) Camilla Michalski (Bishop Ryan) for her work on "BDNF Transcript Expression in Hippocampus of Alzheimer's Disease Subjects".

This year, Dr. Mick Bhatia, SCC-RI Director & Senior Scientist, was the keynote speaker at BASEF's Activity Morning. He spoke to participants (students in grades 7-12, teachers and volunteers) on the topic of "Human Stem Cells". The session was very interactive with numerous quizzes for the audience as well as t-shirt giveaways, and ended with a Q&A period further discussing stem cells and their current impact on science and society.

OCRiT-LEAP Summer Camps 2012

We are happy to continue our relationship with LEAP through the 2012 year and will be hosting a second round of OCRiT/LEAP Camp Days this summer. The OCRiT/LEAP Camp days are part of the 2-week Bioengineering stream hosted by LEAP. There are 3 Bioengineering sessions to choose from, running for 2 weeks each in July and August.

OCRiT-LEAP Summer Camps 2011

In partnership with LEAP, the SCCRI hosted “OCRiT/LEAP Camp Days” on July 12, 26 and August 9, 2011. More than two-dozen high school students spent the day in SCCRI labs and facilities. Each camp day included an opening lecture (Stem Cell 101, covering basic topics in stem cell biology) from Drs. Jon Draper and Brad Doble, a guided tour of the facilities and a lunch n’ learn session showcasing the OCRiT project. The main event was the PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) hands-on lab. Every camper spent a few hours in the molecular lab performing this assay used routinely in research centers worldwide. Through this hands-on activity, students learned the theoretical basics and numerous applications of PCR. The highly interactive camp days brought together scientists, staff members, post-doctoral fellows and students for insightful discussions and exchanges on stem cell biology, science and engineering.

BASEF 2011

OCRiT sponsors the 51st Annual Bay Area Science and Engineering Fair (BASEF) at Mohawk College

Over 300 students in Grades 7 through Grade 12, from 51 different schools, attended the Fair held on March 26th, 2011. Two projects were awarded the OCRiT-SCCRI Regenerative Medicine Award:

Sandra Ghobrial, a King’s Christian Collegiate student, was awarded for her project to investigate porous biodegradable polymer as a scaffold for guided tissue regeneration.

North Park high school students, Ream Elbadri and Emma Jennings, were awarded for their innovative experiment determining whether exposure to magnetic fields could damage cell growth.

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