Two UNBC international students share $23,500 scholarships

The international Philanthropic Education Organization has awarded two University of Northern British Columbia students with scholarships worth a combined total of $23,500.

Christiana Onabola, a first year health sciences doctoral student from Nigeria, was awarded $12,500 and Hooi Xian Lee from Malaysia, a second-year doctoral student in the same department, received $11,000 during an event on Wednesday.

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They were awarded by the Prince George chapter of the Philanthropic Education Organization, which supports women's pursuit of educational goals. And the awards came in the form of International Peace Scholarships, launched after the Second World War to support women from other countries to come to North America to study, with an intention to return to and help their home country.

Onabala's research is focused on using geographic information system to map sustainable development goals and promote watersheds as units of analysis to track implementation and monitoring metrics for the goals.

"This will ensure the sustainable development efforts start from local people and reach communities that need them the most," Onabala said.

Her research is under the supervision of Dr. Margot Parkes - a UNBC Canada Research Chair in Health, Ecosystems and Society and Associate Professor in the School of Health Sciences and Northern Medical Program.

Lee's research is focused on searching for small molecule inhibitors of cancer cells, under the supervision of biochemistry and molecular biology professor Dr. Chow Lee. She is also a teaching assistant for a few chemistry lab courses at UNBC, which also helps cover some of her living expenses.

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