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Student Profile: Bonnie Lo
doctoral student in the Faculty of Science
When I was a young child, I was given a copy of the Berenstain Bears Don’t Pollute (Anymore) and it became a childhood favourite. I would not have guessed that many years later, I would focus my career on understanding how contaminants (pollutants) affect the environment. Before starting my PhD, I worked in environmental consulting on a variety of ecotoxicological projects. In my spare time, you’ll find me baking, working on an art project, or enjoying the outdoors.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO COME TO SFU?
The ecotoxicology researchers at SFU attract a wide range of collaborators across academia, government, non-profits and industry.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR RESEARCH OR YOUR PROGRAM TO A FAMILY MEMBER?
My goal is to understand how pollution in the lower Fraser River is affecting the health of juvenile Chinook salmon. As Fraser River juvenile Chinook migrate from freshwater to the ocean, they pass through waters heavily impacted by human activity. There is little understanding of if, and how, pollutants related to human activity (in the Fraser) are affecting juvenile Chinook. This research is important because it can provide insight into potential causes of declining Chinook salmon populations, a species important to First Nations, fisheries, and the endangered Southern Resident Killer Whales. My research is being conducted under the senior co-supervision of Dr. Vicki Marlatt (SFU) and Dr. Tanya Brown (Fisheries and Oceans Canada) and in collaboration with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Raincoast Conservation Foundation, and Environment and Climate Change Canada.
WHAT ARE YOU PARTICULARLY ENJOYING ABOUT YOUR STUDIES/RESEARCH AT SFU?
The supportive atmosphere. It is a privilege to be pursuing doctoral research and an even greater one to do so with a group of talented and supportive supervisors, collaborators, and labmates.
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.
I am honoured to be a recipient of an NSERC Postgraduate Scholarship-CGS D. This award means that I can spend my time fully focused on research.