Travis McCarron, who graduated from StFX with first class honours in earth sciences in 2011, has received a $105,000 Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Scholarship from the Natural Sciences and Research Engineering Council of Canada (NSERC) to complete his PhD.
Mr. McCarron says he is thrilled to receive the scholarship, good for three years.
“Having the award allows me to focus completely on my studies and know that financially things are looked after. When I first read that I was awarded the CGS, my heart skipped a beat, for sure,” says Mr. McCarron, of North Grant, NS, who is completing his master’s of science degree in earth sciences at Carleton University.
He will use the Alexander Graham Bell Scholarship to study atomic scale processes in minerals and how researchers can use minerals to better understand the formation and evolution of modern and ancient mountain belts.
It’s a research interest that took shape while at StFX.
“I owe everything to my time spent at StFX,” he says. “StFX has a great science program. In particular, my professors in the Earth Sciences Department were great at enflaming my interest in rocks and minerals and they taught me what it takes to be a good student. The small class sizes and one-on-one interaction was so important for me and my fellow classmates’ development. Dr. Alan Anderson in particular taught me how to be a good scientist and he continues to be a mentor to me to this day.”
Mr. McCarron also gave credit to StFX’s Registrar’s Office who went out of their way to help him, he says. “I had completely forgotten about the due date for the application and called the Registrar's Office in a panic I think the day before my application was due. Five minutes later it was on a courier to Ottawa and I got it in time. This type of attention and care is special and I think it is one of the things that sets StFX apart from other universities in Canada.”