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External Research Awards

Memorial University is home to many outstanding researchers. The work of these individuals (often alongside talented colleagues) has a tremendous impact on our communities and our understanding of the world. It is always a thrill when a dedicated researcher is recognized for their contributions.

On this page we will continue to profile those who have been recently recognized by external agencies. We extend our congratulations to these individuals and all their hardworking colleagues.

2015 Members of the Canadian Academy of Engineering

Election to the Canadian Academy of Engineering (CAE) is one of the highest professional honours accorded an engineer in this country.

Fred Cahill is the president of the Cahill Group and an alumnus from Memorial’s Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science.  Mr. Cahill is currently the chair of the Genesis Centre, Memorial’s business incubator for technology-based ventures with high-growth potential.  He has made a number of significant contributions to Memorial, including spearheading the Cahill Engineering One Help Centre, a resource centre for first-year engineering students that helps facilitate the transition from high school to university.

Jamie Long, president, Hibernia Management and Development Co. Ltd. (HMDC), has spearheaded the investment in numerous funds and programs to support research, teaching and learning at Memorial University, including the recent launch of the Hibernia Project-Shad Valley Fund at Memorial in 2014, which encourages high school students to pursue studies in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Dr. Leonard Lye, professor and associate dean (graduate studies), Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, is the leader of The Shad Valley project. Dr. Lye has contributed significantly to the field of engineering and applied science through his role as a professor of civil engineering and associate dean, as an inventor and entrepreneur, mentor to more than 30 graduate students, and has published more than 120 papers in journals and conferences.

 2014 SSHRC Gold Medal

The Gold Medal is SSHRC’s highest research honour. It is awarded to individuals whose sustained leadership, dedication and originality of thought have inspired students and colleagues alike.

Beverley Diamond, Canada Research Chair in Ethnomusicology, has played a central role in developing ethnomusicology as a socially and academically relevant research discipline in Canada. One of the country’s top researchers, her influential scholarship examines music as a means of both defining and decolonizing intercultural relationships, and a medium for addressing rights and social change, notably through her work on indigenous musical cultures in Canada and Scandinavia. Her 2000 anthology, Music and Gender, is considered to be one of the most influential compilations in the field. By linking indigeneity in Canada to global experiences, and by illuminating the role of digital media in indigenous creative initiatives, Diamond continues to reframe not only Canadian music studies, but academic research on indigenous music around the world.

2014 Members of the Royal Society of Canada's College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists

The College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists is Canada’s first national system of multidisciplinary recognition for the emerging generation of Canadian intellectual leadership.

Dr. Andrew Staniland is an assistant professor in the School of Music. He is an award-winning composer whose original output includes orchestral and chamber works, chamber opera and songs for solo voice, and electroacoustic and mixed media works. Winner of multiple awards, Dr. Staniland has been called “one of the most important musicians in Canada” by senior composer Gary Kulesha. He is one of the few composers worldwide who successfully combines the traditional art of musical composition with the digital media of the 21st century.
  Dr. Sean McGrath is an associate professor in the Department of Philosophy, Faculty of Arts. His work encompasses the research fields of cultural studies, philosophy of religion, history of ideas and continental philosophy. His ability to bring his knowledge of the history of philosophy to bear on contemporary ways of thinking and to non-specialists is exemplary. A three-time Humbolt fellow, Dr. McGrath’s current project looks at the relation of religion to secular society. He serves as the co-chair of the North American Schelling Society and as a member of the executive committee of the Canadian Society for Continental Philosophy and received the President’s Award for Outstanding Research in 2012.

2014 Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences

Election to fellowship in the Academy is one of the highest scholarly honours in Canada and awarded to those that have demonstrated leadership, creativity, distinctive competencies and a commitment to advance academic health science nationally as well as globally.

Dr. Thomas Michalak, is an international authority in the field of viral hepatitis and liver diseases. Since 2001 he has been the Senior (Tier 1) Canada Research Chair in Viral Hepatitis and Immunology at Memorial. His groundbreaking discoveries have changed fundamental concepts about the nature of hepatitis B and C viral infections, which affect more than half a billion people globally and have a direct impact on the safety of Canada’s blood supply and organ transplantation.

Have you or someone you know been recently recognized for outstanding research?Please be sure to let us know by contacting Ellen Steinhauer at or Tina Winsor at