2021 Undergraduate Award Recipients. (Top Row, L-R): Jasjot Kaur Deol, Sandy Lau, Signe MacLennan. (Bottom Row): Maggie Duncan, Osob Mohamed, Amanda Janes, Aleisha Fernandes.

2021 FHS Undergraduate Awards

July 09, 2021
Jasjot Kaur Deol

Jasjot Kaur Deol: FHS Award for Outstanding Community Service

Jasjot Kaur Deol is passionate about delivering quality service. She is empathetic and respectful to those around her and believes that it is this spirit that drives her towards a career in healthcare, mitigating social inequities, and life-long learning.

Her appreciation for the role research has in driving change led her to her own project: understanding the mental health help-seeking differences between ethnic minority and non-minority children, and producing policy implications to increase cultural competency in primary care. Alongside her undergraduate journey, she also realized her interests in entrepreneurship through working on projects, including the International Women’s Day Gala.

Deol’s way of relaxing changes as she grows; currently, it is watching family TV, reading a book, or spending time outside in her backyard. Her message to those around her (including herself) is to not give up even when it gets hard; this time will pass and you will see its rewards.

Maggie Duncan

Maggie Duncan: FHS Award for Extraordinary Achievement

Maggie Duncan has always been interested in infectious disease, particularly viruses, which is why she joined the Tietjen lab to gain lab and research experience. With the support of two Undergraduate Student Research Awards, Duncan screened natural products as potential inhibitors of the Influenza A M2 viroporin which lead to her most memorable experience as an undergraduate student: presenting her research in the form of a poster at the International Conference on Antiviral Research in Baltimore. 

Duncan is grateful for the many opportunities that were made available to her as an FHS student and encourages current students took take advantage of as many of these as they can. 

Currently, Duncan is working as a research assistant in the molecular biology lab at the BC Center for Excellence in HIV/AIDS and looks forward to returning to FHS to start the MSc program in Fall 2021 with Dr. Zabrina Brumme as her supervisor.

Aleisha Fernandes

Aleisha Fernandes: FHS Award for Outstanding Service to the Faculty of Health Sciences

Aleisha Fernandes first got involved with FHS as a mentee in the faculty’s Peer Mentorship program in 2014 and stayed with the program throughout her degree. The program ignited her interest in giving back and led her to volunteer with SFU Health and Counselling Services as a Health Peer Educator and with the Student Health Advisory Committee, as well as with SFU Recreation. During her degree, Fernandes also completed 5 Co-op terms working with a non-profit, Fraser Health and BC Cancer. She also completed an honours thesis under the supervision of the amazing Dr. Sonya Cressman. It is thanks to the many inspirational professors, peers and mentors that she has met throughout her degree that led her to finding her passion for epidemiology and health equity.

Although Fernandes is sad to be leaving SFU, she is looking forward to starting the MSc in Epidemiology program at Queen’s University in the fall.

Osob Mohamed

Osob Mohamed: FHS Award for Outstanding Community Service

Osob Mohamed has spent her time at SFU learning from not only her instructors, but from the people around her. During her time pursuing a degree in Health Sciences, Mohamed has found ways to connect her focus in health equity to community organizing, and had the honour of serving students as a student senator and a Faculty Representative and the President of the Simon Fraser Student Society.

She is looking forward to returning to school for her MPH in the near future. In the meanwhile, she is excited to continue her work at SFU in supporting the development of a Black Student Centre, and working alongside currently enrolled Black students to develop spaces on campus they can call their own.

Amanda Janes

Amanda JanesFHS Award for Citizenship and Exemplary Academic Performance

Over these last five years, Amanda Janes was fortunate enough to be a member of the SFU Softball team, allowing her to travel to places like Australia and Hawaii all while obtaining an amazing education. She is  grateful for the life lessons she learned during her time as a student-athlete. She thanks her coaches, teammates, the SFU athletics staff, her professors, and the FHS faculty for supporting and providing her with a great academic foundation moving forward into dental school.

Outside of her involvement with SFU’s Student Athlete Advisory Committee, she volunteered as a member of the Leadership Team for the Low Entropy Foundation, a non-profit organization promoting personal growth and development. This has been a great way for her to give back to the BC community, albeit virtually.

She advises students to keep an open-mind and explore a variety of health science courses because you never know what you’ll end up enjoying.

Sandy Lau

Sandy Lau: FHS Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement, BA Program

Sandy Lau's undergraduate experience in FHS has been filled with opportunities to learn and explore the complexities of health at the individual and population level. Her time as a health sciences student has allowed her to develop a greater appreciation and interest towards improving public health and clinical research.

The FHS co-op program was especially valuable for Lau, allowing her to engage with diverse populations with varying health needs, and opportunities to work with healthcare and research professionals at the Medical Weight Management Centre and the Active Aging Research Team. Currently, Lau works at BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute as a Research Data Management Coordinator to support the ongoing research projects by maintaining a high standard of data quality and integrity.

Lau is excited to see where her career journey will lead her, and she hopes to continue making a positive impact within the health community.

Signe MacLennan

Signe MacLennanFHS Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement, BSc Program

Signe MacLennan is immensely grateful for the knowledge and experiences she acquired throughout her degree in Health Sciences. In addition to enjoying the courses she took both in the Faculty of Health Sciences and in other faculties at the university, she especially liked that SFU offered many ways to get involved outside of her studies. In particular, she is thankful for being provided with the opportunity to contribute to scientific research in the Gries and Brumme laboratories. MacLennan’s involvement in research at SFU taught her about the creative process of scientific discovery and inspired her to continue to pursue research at graduate school. 

MacLennan is excited to be starting as a graduate student in the fall in UBC’s Medical Genetics program. She would like to thank her family and friends for the support and fond memories during the course of her degree.