Government of Canada

Government of Canada

June 08, 2007 11:30 ET

Canada's New Government Honours Career Trek, an Early Intervention Program for Students, with Award for Science Promotion

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwire - June 8, 2007) - Dr. Suzanne Fortier, President of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), today announced that Career Trek, a local organization that reaches out to children with perceived barriers to educational success, has won the Michael Smith Award for Science Promotion (group category).

Career Trek works with students, as young as age 10, who show a real potential to succeed at the post-secondary level but are at risk of missing that opportunity because of a variety of factors related to socio-economic status, disability or lifestyle. One-third of the students self-identify as being of Aboriginal ancestry.

"Our newly released science and technology strategy recognizes the importance of doing more to create a People Advantage," said the Honourable Maxime Bernier, Minister of Industry and Minister responsible for NSERC. "Today's celebration demonstrates Canada's New Government's commitment to build on this advantage and help Canadians acquire the skills they need to participate in our economy."

Three Winnipeg-area institutions work with Career Trek: the University of Manitoba, The University of Winnipeg, and Red River College of Applied Arts, Science and Technology. Career Trek's students and their families participate in a variety of activities on the campuses of the partner institutions, gaining hands-on experience in areas as varied as engineering, environmental science and native studies.

"In our goal of making Canada a country of discoverers and innovators, we recognize the necessity of combining a good science education with career opportunities," says Fortier. "Career Trek's work shows that science promotion not only requires an exposure to the excitement and wonder of science and engineering, but also meaningful social intervention to overcome the barriers that prevent our young people from achieving their true potential."

The Michael Smith Awards for Science Promotion, named after the late Canadian Nobel laureate, are presented annually to honour individuals and groups who make an outstanding contribution to the promotion of science in Canada. Group awards include a medal and $10,000. The award for the individual category was presented in May to Yvon Fortin in Quebec.

NSERC is a federal agency whose role is to make investments in people, discovery and innovation for the benefit of all Canadians. The agency invests in people by supporting some 23,000 university students and postdoctoral fellows in their advanced studies. NSERC promotes discovery by funding more than 11,000 university professors every year and helps make innovation happen by encouraging about 1,300 Canadian companies to invest in university research and training. Over the past 10 years, NSERC has invested $6 billion in basic research, university-industry projects, and the training of Canada's next generation of scientists and engineers.

Contact Information

    Michael Dwyer
    Media and Public Affairs Officer
    Communications Division
    613-992-9001 / Cell: 613-794-9170
    Office of the Honourable Maxime Bernier
    Minister of Industry
    Isabelle Fontaine