Gairdner connects the next generation with laureates through annual Student Networking Lunch

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The annual Gairdner Science Week Student Networking Lunch took place on October 26.

Following the highly anticipated and powerfully inspirational Laureate Lectures on Thursday, October 26, about 90 students eagerly headed to lunch with current and past Canada Gairdner Awards laureates. Hosted by the Gairdner Foundation, this annual Student Networking Lunch brought together high school, undergraduate and doctoral students along with trainees through our partners at the University of TorontoLotus STEMMLet’s Talk ScienceCanadian Association for Girls in Science (CAGIS) and The Knowledge Society.

90 students attended the lunch and learn with Canada Gairdner Award laureates.

This lunch was a rare and rewarding opportunity for students to have empowering conversations with a Gairdner Award recipient at their table. The students were joined by all of the 2023 laureates, Drs. Demis Hassabis, John Jumper, E Peter Greenberg, Bonnie Bassler, Michael Silverman, Gelareh Zadeh, Christopher Mushquash and José Belizán, as well as past laureates Drs. Cesar Victora and Alan Bernstein. Drs. Artem Babaian and Abiola Olaitan, winners of the 2023 Early Career Investigator competition, also joined the lunch to chat with and mentor students.

Dr. Bonnie Bassler,2023 Canada Gairdner International Award laureate, speaking with students.

Dr. Peter Greenberg, 2023 Canada Gairdner International Award laureate, meets with students.

Gairdner laureates took the time to provide career and scientific advice and mentorship, and answer the many questions the students had for them, whether it be about their life or their work. After lunch, many of the students were taken on tours of the world-class labs at MaRS Discovery District or the campus of University of Toronto.

Dr. Demis Hassabis, 2023 Canada Gairdner International Award laureate, meets with students.

Dr. Abiola Olaitan, 2023 Early Career Investigator, meets with students.

Thank you to our partners for helping us make the lunch happen and all the students who came with such enthusiasm and who will undoubtedly be the future of scientific research and innovation. Students were given booklets from the Frontiers for Young Minds 2023 Canada Gairdner Awards Collection, which explains the work of the 2023 laureates.