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TRIUMF co-ops take home Outstanding Presentation Awards at annual Canadian Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physics

30 January 2023

As part of the annual Canadian Conference for Undergraduate Women in Physics (CCUWiP), TRIUMF co-op students Madeleine Berube and Emma Raleigh-Smith were awarded the "Outstanding Presentation Award" for their presentations 'Detection systems and data analysis in the n-rich region' and 'TIGRESS and gamma-ray spectroscopy' 

The annual CCUWiP event is a national conference that convenes physics students, researchers, and academic professionals from coast to coast; it is part of a three-day series held in conjunction with other regionally run CUWiPs across North America and coordinated by the American Physical Society (APS).  

Image: conference participants (credit: University of Regina Faculty of Science) 

This year, CCUWiP was held in-person at the University of Regina from January 20-22, 2023, with over 100 participants joining from across Canada. CCUWiP was sponsored by the University of Regina, TRIUMF, and a variety of academic and industry partners. 

For early-career researchers, the conference offers a unique venue to highlight their work and showcase their experiences. 

“Presenting my work at CCUWiP 2023 was an amazing opportunity!” said Berube. “I really enjoyed being able to share what I've learned at TRIUMF with other undergraduate students from across the country. This would not have been possible without the support from my supervisor, my group members, and my fellow co-op students. 

The TRIUMF co-op program, which connects over 100 students per year to work experiences at the lab and across the Canadian STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) ecosystem, continues to drive impact for both the students and the wider TRIUMF community, explained Roger Caballero-Folch, Berube’s supervisor and TRIUMF Research Associate. 

“My experience supervising Madeleine has been an enrichment in learning in two directions. The time dedicated, the humility and sincerity with which we communicate and discuss the tasks of our projects helps to succeed 

Caballero-Folch added: “This award is the culmination of a very important part of our mission as supervisors: knowledge transfer. The fact that a co-op student is capable of transmitting the theoretical concepts and the motivation of the experimental work that we are doing in our group is the best showcase for TRIUMF – as well as a recognition from the university community participating in undergrad conferences for our institution.” 

“Roger said it perfectly,” said Raleigh-Smith's supervisor, TRIUMF Research Scientist Greg Hackman. “I’m very proud of Emma and the whole team.”  

Image: a CCUWiP sticker, with a panel discussion ongoing in the background (credit: Gwen Grinyer) 

Raleigh-Smith, who has been working with TIGRESS Research Associates Vasil Karayonchev and Daniel Rhodes on various aspects of TIGRESS detector maintenance and operations, was thrilled to be able to share her experiences as part of the event.  

“I was very excited to have the opportunity to represent TRIUMF at this conference and to share my work,” said Raleigh-Smith. “Being a co-op student has given me many unique learning experiences and I'm grateful to be working and learning in such a wonderful community.” 

Today’s co-op students are tomorrow’s scientists,” said Vishnu Vardhan, TRIUMF Learning and Development Specialist. “Our students’ performance is something I am proud of, and their success is our team’s success. I am grateful to the wider Academic and Student Engagement teams, and I hope they continue this amazing platform for enabling talent recognition and talent development. 

Raleigh-Smith's work continues this term alongside TRIUMF postdoctoral researcher Jonathan Williams, and will see her undertaking the analysis of in-beam data taken in December 2022. Berube will also continue on the analysis of decay data taken with the GRIFFIN detector, as well as perform maintenance tasks on the detectors of the Gamma-Ray Spectroscopy Group at TRIUMF. 

Congratulations, Emma and Madeleine!