Sujoy Ghosh Hajra and Careesa Liu are recipients of Spirit of Canada 150 awards for their work on the community-focused student healthcare training program called SCORE.

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SFU students receive Spirit of Canada 150 awards

November 02, 2017
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By Marianne Meadahl

Biomedical engineering PhD students Sujoy Ghosh Hajra and Careesa Liu have won Spirit of Canada 150 awards for developing a training program that gives high school and post-secondary students hands-on experience in solving real healthcare challenges.

The award recognizes outstanding contributions made by everyday Canadians in their respective communities.

The two created their award-winning program, called Surrey Collaborative Outreach and Research Experience, or SCORE, in 2014. The multi-faceted training program brings students together to collaborate with academic, healthcare and industrial partners in solving real health- care challenges.

Since its inception, SCORE has grown to encompass a network of more than 22 organizations ranging from community groups to large multinationals. The goal:  to develop Metro Vancouver’s human capital.

SCORE’s success can be seen in the continuity of its partnerships, the career growth of its graduates, the expansion of the program’s operations team, and in the many awards it has garnered along the way. These include winning the North American and global gold medals in the 2016 Global Best Awards competition.

“It’s exciting for us to see SCORE participants follow their passion to become involved with the newest scientific research discoveries in B.C., network with numerous professionals and fellow students, and prepare for future careers in STEM fields,” says Ghosh Hajra.

Rachel Nelson, SFU External Relations associate director of partnerships and programs, nominated the duo for the spirit award.

“By establishing the SCORE program, Careesa and Sujoy have created a world-leading, innovative program that facilitates cooperative engagement in Surrey. I am confident that Careesa and Sujoy are helping build the skill sets our youth need to lead Canada for the next 150 years.”