Grant Sheffer

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Grant Sheffer Memorial Awards Established for Physics Students

June 28, 2017
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In honour of her son Grant, Marilyn Sheffer has established the Grant Sheffer Undergraduate Student Research Award and the Grant Sheffer Memorial Graduate Award in Physics.

Grant Sheffer passed away in December 2016 and was an SFU physics alumnus who was passionate about the sciences; physics in particular.

Marilyn recalls, “At three years old, armed with his trusty “screwdriver” he accomplished many deeds, good and bad. Grant loved taking things apart”.

Grant was born in Regina, Saskatchewan but moved to BC in 1968.  He attended Simon Fraser University, graduating with a B.Sc. in 1976. During this time, Grant and his classmates, Mark Downing, Jean Henry and Mariella Johanssen helped bring Physics Nobel Prize winner, Richard Feynman as a guest to SFU. The group became good friends with Dr. Feynman, who autographed several lecture papers and books to Grant, signed “Dick Feynman”. These items became Grant’s most prized possessions.

Grant’s mentor, John D’Auria hired Grant to work first at SFU and later on, at TRIUMF. D’Auria says, “Grant Sheffer is an ideal role model for all physics students. When you had a problem, Grant was the person to see. He was always friendly and willing to help. He will be missed”.

Jeff Sonier, chair of the physics department says he is “very grateful to Marilyn Sheffer for her generosity.” He adds, “through the establishment of the Grant Sheffer awards, many students that have a passion for physics, like Grant did, will have the opportunity to develop research during their undergraduate studies and pursue their graduate education”.