In mid-April, researchers at the St. Boniface Hospital Albrechtsen Research Centre and the University of Manitoba announced an important scientific breakthrough that can help in the fight against antibiotic resistant bacteria. PEG-2S was developed by Dr. Grant Pierce and Dr. Pavel Dibrov and combats 2 of the top 10 antibiotic-resistant “priority pathogens” identified by the World Health Organisation as posing the greatest risk to human health.
Although it may still be 10 years before the drug goes through the required process before it ends up on pharmacy shelves, this is an important development and a reminder of the incredible work that continues to be led by researchers here in Saint Boniface – Saint Vital, at the Albrechtsen Research Centre.
The day before, I learned that Grace Ma, a resident of our riding, was awarded a $25,000 prize for her post-secondary education as one of 7 STEAM Horizon Awards winners! Funded by the Canada Science and Technology Museums Corporation Foundation, the new STEAM award invites Canada’s youth to promote positive changes throughout their community using science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM). Congratulations Grace!
A couple of weeks later, I went to Holy Cross School for their Science Celebration and it reminded me of the amazing talent and knowledge found in our local schools. The science fair has definitely evolved since I was in school! This event honoured students who had participated in the Bison Regional Science Fair. Congratulations to Grace Madden from Holy Cross School and Jonah Norman from Christ the King School who will be joining Team Bison Manitoba to compete at the Canada-Wide Science Festival in Regina this month!
These science fairs are great opportunities to discover the world of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). These fields are increasingly important in our world, now and into the future. That is why I am proud of our federal investments in coding and digital skills education for kindergarten to grade 12 students, and hands-on learning experiences to introduce young Canadians to the power and potential of STEM fields.
We all know the important role that teachers have in fostering a thirst for knowledge and innovation. In order to recognize the work of exceptional educators in strengthening Canada’s STEM culture, the Prime Minister’s Teaching Awards has been expanded to include 17 new STEM-themed awards.
I encourage you all to pursue novel and innovative lines of inquiry and create new knowledge in any field that you feel passionately about. We will all be greater for it.