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Rachel Weldrick: Recipient of the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship

Rachel Weldrick, research assistant at the Gilbrea Centre for Studies in Aging, has been awarded the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship, one of the most prestigious awards in the country.

Jun 08, 2017

Congratulations to Rachel Weldrick who has been awarded the 2017 Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship!

Rachel is a PhD Candidate in Social Gerontology at McMaster University. She also holds an MA in Health & Aging (McMaster), and a BSc in Psychology (Acadia University). Currently, Rachel is a research assistant at the Gilbrea Centre for Studies in Aging where she works on the Hamilton Seniors Isolation Impact Plan (HSIIP). In addition, she is the Academic Coordinator for the Gilbrea Student Group, and Student Representative of the Canadian Association on Gerontology (CAG) Student Connection.

Funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the scholarship is awarded to world-class doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows performing innovative research.

The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships program was created to attract and retain world-class doctoral students and to establish Canada as a global centre of excellence in research and higher learning. It is available to both Canadian and international PhD students studying at Canadian universities. The scholarships are a central element in the Government of Canada’s science and technology strategy, announced in May 2007, which sets out a multi-year framework for improving Canada’s long-term competitiveness. For a successful award application, each student has to demonstrate his or her leadership skills and a high standard of scholarly achievement in graduate studies in the social sciences, humanities, natural sciences, engineering or health. 

Rachel's proposed research program is a participatory project that will examine the intersection of aging, social isolation, and well-being. Working alongside a participatory advisory group, she will investigate how urbandwelling older women experience social isolation. Guided by a mixed-method, participatory framework, this study will uncover information about some of Canada’s most vulnerable seniors. Her research will emphasize the voices and experiences of these older women, and bring a new understanding and awareness to the growing problem of social isolation among seniors in urban communities.

This proposed study will be supervised by Dr. Amanda Grenier (Gilbrea Chair in Aging & Mental Health) at McMaster University. 

Congratulations Rachel!