Winnipeg U: Medical Physics Summer Student Symposium

Press Release

August 24, 2021

Annual event highlights Manitoban students and their important research

The University of Winnipeg, University of Manitoba, and CancerCare Manitoba held the Medical Physics Summer Student Symposium on Zoom last week.

This annual event showcases research by students from across Winnipeg and gives them, along with faculty, the chance to learn about the research their colleagues are conducting.

“I was blown away about how great all the students were at presenting and how important their research is,” said Melanie Martin, Professor, Department of Physics. “Manitoba has a strong group of world-class researchers doing medical physics research and the students who presented their work show we are training top-notch students. Hopefully some will take over to continue this world-class research in the future.”

Judges included Murray Alexander, Adjunct Professor in UWinnipeg’s Department of Physics; Jorge Alpuche, Radiotherapy Physicist at CancerCare Manitoba; and Rachel Nickel, a prize-winning medical physics graduate student at UManitoba.

Of the 10 students who presented their research, five had ties to UWinnipeg and Martin.

“I am extremely proud of my students,” she said. “For many of them, this was their first talk ever and you could not tell at all in the presentations. They were all professional and they represented UWinnipeg very well.”

Meet the students

Maxina Sheft (First Place) – Axon Diameter Inferences in the Human Brain Using Oscillating Gradient Spin Echo Sequences

Sheft, who’s from Georgia, received a Mitacs Globalink Research Internship to work with Martin this summer. She submitted two papers with her work, one which just came back requiring only minor changes and the other still under review.

Ashley King (Second Place) – Measuring Garlic Stem ROI Using OGSE

King is going into her final year of her Bachelor of Science (Honors) in Neuroscience. She will be Melanie Martin’s thesis student this fall. She worked with Martin in the summer of 2021 through the Indigenous Summer Scholars Program and with an NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award.

Madison Chisholm – Measuring axon diameters in mice using OGSE

Chisholm is pursuing a Bachelor of Science (Honors) in Neuroscience. She hopes to do her honours thesis with Martin in 2022. She worked with Martin in the summer of 2021 with an NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award.

Maria Fernanda Sandoval Aranda – Measuring bigger cells with MRI

Aranda, who’s from Mexico, is another student who received the Mitacs Globalink Research Internship. She started working with Martin a few weeks ago and is focusing on image processing.

Sophia Krak – Slapdash and the DREADD Effect

Krak is a high school student from St. Mary’s Academy who has been working with UWinnipeg graduate student Jarrad Perron on PET-MR imaging over the past year. She has won a silver medal and best intermediate physics project at the Manitoba Schools Science Symposium in 2021.

Following the student presentations, guest speaker Dr. Milica Popović presented Low-power Microwave Breast Screening: From Simulations to Clinical Trials. Popović is an Associate Professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Associate Dean of Research and Innovation, Faculty of Engineering, at McGill University.

A special thanks to UWinnipeg’s Andrea Wiebe, Department of Physics, for organizing this event.

Media Contact

Brandon Logan, Digital Communications Coordinator
The University of Winnipeg
[email protected]


NationTalk Partners & Sponsors Learn More