Prestigious Vanier Scholarship Awarded to UWinnipeg Alumnus

Jonathan Karl Challis

Jonathan Karl Challis, photo courtesy of Challis

UWinnipeg graduate Jonathan Challis has been awarded a Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship, valued at $150,000 over three years.  This highly prestigious fellowship is awarded to the very best of the best PhD students in Canada.

Challis received his BSc (Honours) degree in chemistry from UWinnipeg in 2011, under the supervision of UWinnipeg’s Canada Research Chair in Ecotoxicology Dr. Charles S. Wong. His undergraduate thesis has resulted in a first-author publication in the Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A.  He has 8 scientific papers published to date.  In addition, he has won five best-presentation prizes at a number of scientific conferences, most recently at the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry’s North America Annual Meeting in Vancouver.

“We are very proud of Jonathan, who exemplifies the high quality of education offered at the University of Winnipeg,” says Wong.  “This scholarship is a testament to his talent, drive, and abilities, and I’m privileged to continue to work with him.”

Challis is continuing his education at the University of Manitoba, co-supervised by Dr. Mark L. Hanson and Wong under an adjunct appointment there.  He is specializing in characterizing novel new passive water samplers for emerging environmental contaminants, and applying this technology to understanding how such chemicals get into waters and behave once released.  Challis’ research is conducted in part at UWinnipeg’s state-of-the-art Thomas Sill Analytical Laboratory for Water Research Technology (STALWART), located in the Richardson College for the Environment & Science Complex.

Challis is the fourth recent graduate of UWinnipeg to go on to be named a Vanier scholar, joining Allyson Menzies, Alannah Hallas, and Harlyn Silverstein.  He is also one of many UWinnipeg alumni working with UWinnipeg faculty members who have moved on to doctoral studies.

The Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships Program allows highly motivated and competitive students to realize their full potential and develop their careers. Upon completion of their award, Vanier Scholars will be well positioned to contribute to the continued growth of Canada’s research capacity and the country’s economic and social prosperity.

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