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Dr. Graham Worrall, Family Medicine, Dr. James Hutchinson, Infectious Diseases Control, and Dr. Gregory Sherman, Family Medicine, have been given the award for Best Original Research Paper 2008, published by Canadian Family Physician magazine. The award was given for their paper Diagnosing Streptococcal Sore Throat in Adults: Randomized Controlled trial of In-Office Aids. The award will be received by Dr. Worrall at the 2008 Family Medicine Forum in Toronto, Nov. 27-29.

Christopher Fisher, who is working towards his PhD under the supervision of Dr. John Hanchar, professor and head of Earth Sciences, was one of only two awardees of the Mineralogical Society of America’s 2009 Grant for Student Research in Mineralogy and Petrology. The grant, for $5,000 US, was awarded based on the qualifications of the applicant; the quality, innovativeness, and scientific significance of the research; and the likelihood of success of the project; and is to provide funding for research-related expenses. The title of his award-winning project is: Testing the Use of Synthetic Minerals as Isotopic Reference Materials: An Example Using Hafnium in Zircon. This is the first time since the grant’s inception in 1981 that this highly competitive grant has been awarded to a student from a Canadian university.

The departments of Mathematics and Statistics and Computer Science each had a successful weekend last month at the Atlantic Provinces Council on the Sciences (APICS) Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science Conference in Moncton, NB. Five undergraduate math and stats students participated in the conference and associated math competitions. Four also gave talks on their summer research projects. Andrew Stewart and Ian Payne won the first place in the APICS math competitions, and Andrew Stewart was awarded the first place for his presentation. The other students included Bradley Dart, Mike Barriault, and Beth Ann Austin. The MUN Computer Science team placed second in the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) programming competition. Students Jason Gedge, Tim Oram and Chris Whalen were accompanied by their coach, Dr. Vidyasankar Krishnamurthy. The team will now go on to the ACM Eastern North-American Programming Competition in Rochester, N.Y.

The Canadian Mathematical Society (CMS) has awarded the 2008 CMS David Borwein Distinguished Career Award to Dr. Hermann Brunner, an honorary research professor with the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. The David Borwein Distinguished Career Award “recognizes the career of an individual who has made an exceptional, broad, and continued contribution to mathematics.” The award is named for David Borwein, a former president of the CMS and an eminent Canadian mathematician. According to a release issued by CMS, Dr. Brunner has made notable contributions to Canadian mathematics through his research, teaching, and through the breadth of his service to the mathematical community. He has served as vice-president of the Canadian Mathematical Society, group chair for the mathematical and statistical sciences at the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), and was a founder and director of AARMS.

Earth Sciences PhD student Peter Valley and his supervisor, Dr. John Hanchar, head of the department, have had a paper accepted by the journal, Geology. Geology is highest profile journal in geosciences, after Nature and Science, with an impact factor in 2007 of 3.75. Their paper discusses that the commonly held notion that the alteration of host rocks and the apparently related ore mineralization (most host rocks of economic ore deposits are extremely altered by K and Na) were separate geologic events in their field area, separated by several 10's of millions of years, and in fact are unrelated events. This has intrinsic geologic implications but also is important for searching for ore deposits.