The University of Winnipeg



Soapbox Science returns to Winnipeg

A student works in the lab.

Two University of Winnipeg faculty members are among those presenting at Soapbox Science, which returns to Winnipeg at the Forks’ Oodena Celebration Circle on Saturday, August 12, 2023 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Leading women and non-binary scientists of Winnipeg will gather at the Forks to share a series of talks on current scientific endeavours that will help dismantle barriers and inspire future scientists of all genders.

Celebrating and amplifying the voices of women and non-binary scientists through events like Soapbox Science Winnipeg is crucial for fostering diversity, inclusivity, and innovation in the scientific community.

Dr. Manisha Ajmani

UWinnipeg researcher Dr. Manisha Ajmani and her sister Nisha Ajmani are the co-organizers of Soapbox Science Winnipeg. They are passionate advocates for women’s education in STEM fields and strongly believe women and non-binary scientists can help shape the future through science.

The sisters first discovered Soapbox Science in 2017 at Edinburgh Soapbox Science, where Manisha shared her research. They were inspired to start a Winnipeg version.

Nisha Ajmani, who has been a part of various STEM-based outreach programs, says a Soapbox event is a great way to spread awareness about STEM research in Winnipeg.

“Science, to me, is an extraordinary voyage of boundless curiosity and unyielding determination,” said Nisha Ajmani. “It unveils the wonders of the world, offering us a deeper understanding of our existence and inspiring us to push the limits of human potential. I wholeheartedly embrace the power of science as a guiding light, igniting my passion to explore the uncharted territories of knowledge and pave the way for transformative discoveries.”

Growing through engagement

Soapbox Science Winnipeg offers scientists a platform to directly engage with the public, showcasing their work and expertise. It increases visibility, challenges gender biases, and promotes diversity in the scientific community. The event nurtures confidence, develops public speaking skills, and fosters personal and professional development. By encouraging connections and collaborations, it creates a supportive community of scientists.

“Celebrating and amplifying the voices of women and non-binary scientists through events like Soapbox Science Winnipeg is crucial for fostering diversity, inclusivity, and innovation in the scientific community,” said Dr. Manisha Ajmani. “By providing a platform for direct engagement with the public, this event showcases groundbreaking research that we hope will inspire the next generation of scientists.”

Schedule of events

Soapbox Science Winnipeg will include the following talks.

  • The environment has been contaminated! How bioprocesses can help by Dr. Bruna Soares Fernandes, Assistant Professor at University Federal of Pernambuco and visiting professor at the University of Manitoba.
  • Bridging the Gap between Genes and Natural Products by Harman Gill, PhD Candidate, Department of Chemistry, UManitoba.
  • Getting digital evidence from mobile phones by Dr. Mary O. Adedayo, Assistant Professor, Department of Applied Computer Science, UWinnipeg.
  • Biopolymer from waste: a road to pollution free future by Dr. Rumana Islam, Research Associate, Department of Biosystems Engineering, UManitoba.
  • Unlocking the Secrets of Your DNA: The Science of Polygenic Scores and Precision Medicine by Dr. Urmi Das, Postdoctoral Researcher, UManitoba.
  • Oleaginous Red Yeasts: Producers of Triacylglycerides and Carotenoids by Dr. Irene Fakankun, Government of Manitoba.
  • Mumps, the comeback kid by Jasmine Frost, MSc, UManitoba.
  • Drug resistance evolution drivers in Candida by Parul Sethi, UManitoba.
  • Cities working on sustainability: some international examples by Dr. Sylvie Albert, Professor, Department of Business & Administration, UWinnipeg.
  • Are you “Kidney” me? Kidneys and Chronic Kidney Disease by Dr. Silvia Leon-Mantilla, MD, MSc, Chronic Disease Innovation Centre.
  • Sky View, a new perspective by Dr. Mina (Fatemeh) Enayatollahi, Post-Doctoral Fellow, UManitoba.
  • Fungi-fueled Future: Mycelium Coffee Cups as Sustainable Solution by Sabrina Rahman, Msc, Department of Agriculture and food Science, Biosystem Engineering, UManitoba.

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