September 2013


 Welcome Back

Welcome back to another school year! We hope you all had a great summer and we look forward to an eventful fall as we develop and roll out more educational module offerings for you and your research teams.

 Partner Project News

Hive’n & Thrive’n in BC

Dr. Leonard Foster, Bee IPM project lead, and Max MacDonald, our Apicultural Summer Researcher, are among the speakers at the BC Honey Producers Association’s 2013 AGM Conference and Trade Show, which is set to take place from Friday, October 25th, 2013 to Sunday, October 27th, 2013 in Kelowna.

One of the key aims of the Conference is to raise funds for educating beekeepers and for apiculture research in BC in the fight against pathogens, mites and diseases, which are affecting the survival of bees. A healthy bee population is critical in our ecosystem and essential as pollinators of our food supply.

Learn more about the event at

Please let us know if you have any research project news that we can share in upcoming newsletters.


Intern Features: Julia Suen and Katia Truong

In our Intern Feature series, we profile genomics.entrepreneurship@UBC interns and their work with our program and our partner projects.

This month, we put both our talented animation interns, Julia and Katia, in the spotlight. As students of Emily Carr University, they joined our creative team in the spring of 2013 and are currently collaborating with our video intern, Julia Patey, on an animated piece for the Applied Metagenomics of the Watershed Microbiome. The animators also work individually on separate projects: Julia Suen is using animation as a communication tool to explain Carlo Vargas’ (Grape and Wine Genomics researcher) strip that tests for water stress in grape plants, and Katia is working with Bee IPM project manager, Marta Guarna, to describe the hygenic behaviour of nurse bees in combating the destruction of varroa mites.

Learn more about Julia and Katia‘s internship experience at their profile pages.

What Are Our Interns Up To?

Max doing infestation testing.

Max MacDonald conducting infestation testing.

Max MacDonald, Apicultural Summer Researcher

UBC Biochemistry student Max MacDonald spent his summer working with the Bee IPM project by surveying British Columbian beekeepers. The main focus of his survey was to determine familiarity with selective breeding methods within the community while promoting the marker-assisted selection (MAS) and field-assisted selection (FAS) techniques, as wel as the development of varroa-sensitive hygienic (VSH) stock. Max also focused on gathering any major concerns BC beekeepers might have with breeding projects, the industry and colony health. Max also learned and practised a multitude of new skills pertaining to hygienic bee breeding, including grafting and banking queens, managing mating yards and field hygienic testing. He described his internship in Grand Forks as “a very rewarding and educational experience for me.”

Julia Patey filming footage in Backyard Vineyards.

Julia Patey, Video Intern

Julia has been hard at work these past few months, interviewing graduates of  entrepreneurship@UBC‘s Lean Launch Pad program to create promotional material, and working closely with the Metagenomics of the Watershed Microbiome team.

Recently, Julia was at the beautiful Backyard Vineyards in Langley, BC with the Winos team, Carlo Vargas and Tatiana Pirogovskaya, to film a demonstration video for the researchers’ water-stress test strip. The team will be using this video to show potential customers how the product works. Stay tuned for the video!

For more information on our Internship Program, please visit the Internships page or contact us.

 Upcoming Events

Presented by g.e@UBC

Stakeholder Engagement Sharing Session

October 2nd, 2013, 9:00 a.m. to noon; Engineering Design Centre, room 102, 2345 East Mall, Vancouver, BC

Please join us in our Stakeholder Engagement Sharing Session to share your stories, best practices and challenges, and help shape our future module sessions. For more information or to RVSP, please visit our website.

Tools for Scientific Storytelling: Social Media II

November 2013

Back in July, genomics.entrepreneurship@UBC presented a Social Media workshop with science communicator Ben Paylor (@BenPaylor) to explore the benefits of Twitter and other platforms to communicate scientific research. Due to overwhelming feedback from our participants for more hands-on session, we are planning to offer a longer follow-up workshop this fall. This upcoming event will focus on case studies examples and specific how-tos to garner support for your initiative. Please stay tuned for more information.

In related news, Ben and the rest of the Signals blog team have recently released a fantastic animation short, entitled “What is a stem cell?” This video, narrated by Dr. Jim Till, is the first in the StemCellShorts series, which aims to provide answers to basic questions about stem cell research. Watch the short now at Signals. It is inspiring to our team of animators.

Lean Launch Pad for Genomics

January to March 2014

genomics.entrepreneurship@UBC is proud to present our next offering of the Lean Launch Pad program! This 8-week series of workshops focuses on customer identification, engagement and business model optimization using techniques based on entrepreneur Steve Blank’s successful entrepreneurship training methods. For more information on the program, please visit the program page.

Other Events

In addition to the workshops hosted by genomics.entrepreneurship@UBC, here are other events of interest on the genomics/entrepreneurship front offered by UBC, Mitacs and other organizations.

Introduction to Project Management

October 3rd, 2013

Graduate Pathways to Success (GPS) and Mitacs presents this overview of project management for grad students and post-docs who want the skills to take on complex projects. More information is available here.

Foundations of Project Management I: A Team-based Approach

October 24th-25th, 2013

Grad students and post-docs can learn how to complete you work and research with this workshop hosted by GPS and Mitacs Step. You can read more at

You can view all upcoming events in our Events calendar.

 Top Tweets

@MaRSDD Get moving, go lean to start a business
@GenomeCanada “Keeping an eye on pests: Current work on mountain pine beetle (MPB) is an example of how genomics has been used…
@EntMagazine Infographic: Easy Tips for Writing Better Tweets  via @PRDaily
@sciam If Anime Can Save Science Outreach, It Will Look Like This
@BDC_VC RT @paulsingh: Traction and Sustainable Growth – A How-to Guide for Startups

Follow genomics.entrepreneurship@UBC on Twitter.

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genomics.entrepreneurship@UBC is in partnership with Genome BC and Genome Canada.

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