Ashley Brown chosen for Summer Research Program

Ashley Brown, of Elnora, is one of only 60 Grade 11 students chosen from across Canada to work in University of Alberta research labs this summer. They will participate in the U of A's 26th annual Women in Scholarship, Engineering, Science and Technology (WISEST) Summer Research Program. Brown attends Delburne Centralized School and will spend the summer in the computing science lab studying how to create a virtual environment that can assist in occupational therapy.
The U of A's WISEST program brings science to the community and encourages young people of both genders to explore less traditional careers in engineering, science and technology. The program fosters the excitement of scientific enquiry in these students, as well as a desire to contribute to research vital to Alberta's future as a knowledge-based centre.
The summer research program takes place on the U of A campus from July 6–August 17. The students spend six weeks working as members of research teams gaining hands-on experience that will enable them to explore their interests and assist them in choosing careers. This year they are involved with projects in the Faculties of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences, Engineering, Science and Medicine and Dentistry.
To enhance their research experience, the students meet weekly to discuss their experiences and explore other opportunities for learning, such as research presentations, lab tours and group discussions with women and men in non-traditional career roles.
The overwhelming success of the University of Alberta's WISEST program is supported by surveys that show more than 85 per cent of former program participants have pursued, or are currently pursuing, studies in sciences, medicine or engineering. Careers in these fields are what the Alberta and federal governments call the pivotal jobs for the 21st century. WISEST has also received many national and international awards for its innovative approach to learning.