"I  love the ability to work in my area of interest which is made possible by the collaboration of SFU with other organizations such as Fraser Health Authority."

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Student Profile: Betty Chinda

Biomedical Physiology & Kinesiology master's student in the Faculty of Science

February 17, 2021
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My name is Betty and I am a Biomedical Physiology & Kinesiology Masters’ student in the SFU ImageTech Lab under the supervision of Dr. Xiaowei Song. I obtained my Bachelors’ degree in Behavioural Neuroscience at SFU in 2017. I am originally from Nigeria, a diverse and multicultural country in West Africa. I have been blessed to call British Columbia home since 2013. When I am not doing research at SFU, you can find me singing in my church choir or playing some tunes with my keyboard (a new skill I started picking up early in the pandemic lockdown -thanks quarantine!)

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO COME TO SFU?

My journey to SFU started in Summer 2014 when I transferred from Fraser International College (FIC) to pursue my Bachelor’s degree. As an international student then, SFU was recommended by a recruiter and I was intrigued in the opportunity for an international education in Canada. However, my choice to pursue graduate school at SFU was influenced by the quality of education I experienced during my undergraduate studies, the availability of my desired program and the opportunities for research. My research interest was piqued by a class I took in my 3rd year of undergrad (BPK 448) – which opened my eyes to the world of research and current rehabilitation efforts being made for neurological disorders. That singular experience spurred me to volunteer with recovering stroke patients as well as linked me with my current supervisor with whom I have worked with on several neurological research projects ultimately culminating in my graduate school pursuit.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR RESEARCH OR YOUR PROGRAM TO A FAMILY MEMBER?

My research focuses on the use of functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) to study the human brain. fMRI allows us to directly view the brain and its activity when performing a specific task, allowing us to know exactly where and how the brain works in our day to day activity. Specifically, I am interested in the use of fMRI to detect cognitive recovery in patients with carotid stenosis after undergoing revascularization by stenting. Carotid stenosis is a disease in which the major arteries involved in blood supply to the brain is blocked. Patients with flow-limiting carotid stenosis are at increased risk of cognitive decline in addition to increased risks of stroke. The effects of revascularization therapies on cognition is not well understood. It is my interest to see how imaging technologies like fMRI can help us understand this problem and by extension other brain pathologies where cognition is impaired such as Alzheimer’s Disease.

WHAT ARE YOU PARTICULARLY ENJOYING ABOUT YOUR STUDIES/RESEARCH AT SFU?

I enjoy the commitment to research (e.g the development of the SFU ImageTech Lab where I currently work), the availability of experienced and knowledgeable faculty members especially at the BPK department and the multiple support and resources available to me as a graduate student. I also love the ability to work in my area of interest which is made possible by the collaboration of SFU with other organizations such as Fraser Health Authority.

HAVE YOU BEEN THE RECIPIENT OF ANY MAJOR OR DONOR-FUNDED AWARDS? IF SO, PLEASE TELL US WHICH ONES AND A LITTLE ABOUT HOW THE AWARDS HAVE IMPACTED YOUR STUDIES AND/OR RESEARCH.

(CGS-M, CIHR SPOR Graduate Fellowship, BPK Graduate Fellowship & Mahatma Ghandi Memorial Fellowship). These awards have been instrumental to making my graduate studies journey at SFU easier and I am immensely grateful to the donors! Not having to worry about tuition or financial support have enabled me to focus on what matters in my research and have been a reminder to me that our little efforts get rewarded and appreciated.

Contact Betty: bchinda@sfu.ca

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