Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research (AHFMR)
The HYRS program gives high school students the chance to work for six weeks in one of the University of Alberta’s medical research laboratories. Nick Kalogirou, a HYRS participant, was thrilled to be able to spend his summer investigating Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) technology.
On March 20, 1978, Dr Harry Gunning, Dr Walter MacKenzie, Dr Lionel McLeod, Peter Lougheed, Fred Mannix, Sr, and ten others met for dinner and, while discussing medical research, came up with the idea of creating the Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research. Twenty years later, seven University of Alberta researchers who had received AHFMR funding since the creation of the Foundation, were honoured. These researchers were Drs Carol Cass, Tessa Gordon, Robert Hodges, Michael James, Linda Reha-Krantz, Diane Taylor, and Lorne Tyrrell.
The Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research (AHFMR) was established in 1980 by the government of Alberta to promote health science research in Alberta. Since then, it has contributed more than $850 million directly to the scientific community. More than 230 senior researchers are able to keep their labs running because of AHFMR grants. Funding programs are offered to scholars at all university levels, from undergraduate students to established senior researchers. Many students and professors at the University of Alberta have won funding from AHFMR, based on the quality of the work that they have already been doing.
Among the programs offered by AHFMR are:
- Heritage Youth Researcher Summer (HYRS)
- In the summer between grades 11 and 12 exceptional students are given hands-on experience of medical research.
- Summer Studentship
- Undergraduate students are given funding to work on a research project during the summer.
- AHFMR Independent Investigation Awards
- These are seven-year awards that support Alberta-based university faculty who are doing health-related research.