Since inception in 2009, BHCRI has awarded over $6.9M in stipend support to 207 graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and medical residents pursuing cancer research careers within Atlantic Canada. CRTP provides trainees with opportunities to develop leadership skills, gain an appreciation of decision making processes such as peer review and contribute to the overall operation of BHCRI. The skills learned through CRTP provide the building blocks for success, regardless of career direction.
Meet some of our alumni to learn more about where they are now:
D. Craig Ayre
“I’m from Grand Falls-Windsor, Newfoundland and Labrador, and despite some globe-hopping in my career, I’ve done all my training (Undergraduate through to PhD) at Memorial University of Newfoundland, in St. John’s. My science degrees are in Biochemistry, but my training has really been in the cell biology of immune cells, with a particular interest in B cell leukemia. I was very fortunate to be supported by the Beatrice Hunter Cancer Research Institute through the Cancer Research Training Program (CRTP) during my doctoral studies at Memorial, and my post-doctoral fellowship with the Atlantic Cancer Research Institute in Moncton. One of the most important parts of effective research is establishing a reliable and inter-disciplinary network. None of us know it all or can be experts in everything. Our networks are what allow us to keep rigorously pushing the boundaries in science. While part of the CRTP, my research career started with a basic science research question on B cell survival, evolved into investigating the ways healthy and cancer cells communicate with their environments, and continued into how those messages might improve our ability to diagnose disease. The links CRTP helped me build opened doors for me to transition from an academic lab in Newfoundland, to a precision medicine specialist in Moncton, to being a professor of medicine in the Caribbean. Now I am a principal scientist in immunology for CellCarta in Montreal. My job is to be responsible for the overall conduct of immunology studies, from experimental design to formulating conclusions and recommendations. My studies range from assay development to regulated clinical trials. Beyond my scientific role, a significant part of my job is to be the communication link between our clients, and the various departments within CellCarta, which means I get to be involved in the science, business, and administrative aspects of our projects.”