IODE War Memorial Scholarship Award Recipients for 2023/2024
Bianca Bondi, York University
Bianca Bondi received her Honours Bachelor of Science from the University of Toronto in 2017, having double majored in psychology and human biology. Presently, Bianca is a PhD candidate and Canadian Institutes of Health Research trainee at York University within the Clinical-Developmental Psychology and Clinical Neuropsychology programs. She previously received her MA in the same programs in 2019. Bianca is entering the final year of her PhD, during which she will complete her Psychology Residency at The Hospital for Sick Children before pursuing registration with the College of Psychologists of Ontario.
Through her research, Bianca is committed to advancing the understanding of early neurodevelopmental profiles in neurologically vulnerable children. Bianca believes in building collaborative partnerships, having been embedded at The Hospital for Sick Children for nine years and Breaking the Cycle for six years in numerous research, leadership, and clinical roles. At York University, Bianca has been a research scholar and leader within the Lillian Meighen Wright Maternal-Child Health Foundation and the LaMarsh Centre for Child and Youth Development. Clinically, Bianca has done extensive psychological assessment and intervention work with vulnerable pediatric populations across community mental health, early intervention, as well as tertiary care and rehabilitation hospital settings.
Bianca hopes to work within the public sector to amplify social justice and contribute towards equitable and inclusive access to care. Through the intersection of her research, leadership, and clinical advancements, Bianca hopes to make system-level change by informing policies around screening, prevention, and early intervention to yield optimal neurodevelopment for all children.
Rohit Singla, University of British Columbia
Rohit Singla is an accomplished researcher, entrepreneur, and advocate with a diverse range of skills and experiences in the fields of medicine, biomedical engineering, and software engineering. He is currently pursuing an MD/PhD in Biomedical Engineering at the University of British Columbia, where his research focuses on quantitative kidney ultrasound from macroscale to microscale. Rohit's work has earned him numerous accolades, including a fellowship from the Kidney Foundation of Canada as well as a top rank in the nationwide Vanier Scholarship competition.
Prior to his PhD studies, Rohit completed a MASc in Biomedical Engineering at UBC, where he received 2 best paper awards, an NSERC CGS-M Scholarship, and an Engineers in Scrubs Fellowship. He also holds a BASc in Computer Engineering from UBC, where he specialized in software engineering and achieved a perfect CGPA of 4.0.
In addition to his academic achievements, Rohit has a track record of entrepreneurship, having co-founded two ventures, Epiloid Biotechnology and 92 Medical. He has also worked as a research engineer at UBC, where he coordinated 12 research projects across multiple hospital departments and led the writing of 5 successful grant proposals, securing a total of $135,000 in funding.
As a passionate advocate for equity, diversity, and inclusion, Rohit founded the AI in Medicine Student Society at UBC and has served as the Student Affairs Representative for the UBC Faculty of Medicine. He is also an assistant coach for the South Delta Varsity Football team and enjoys pursuing his interests in music, film, and attending concerts.
Karen Lok Yi Wong, University of British Columbia
Karen Lok Yi Wong is currently a second-year Ph.D. student at the University of British Columbia (UBC) School of Social Work. Her research interests include ageing and cultural, racial, immigration, and language diversity, the experience of people living with dementia, and aging and technology. She conducted research on her research interests and published and presented widely academically and professionally. She is a recipient of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Doctoral Award and Age-Well Michael F. Harcourt Policy Fellowship.
Karen is also a registered social worker in British Columbia, Canada. She has been practicing in diverse settings related to older adults, such as community senior services centre, long-term care, geriatric acute care, and rehabilitation program. She is now practising as a social worker with Providence Healthcare. She received different clinical practice awards, which acknowledged her excellence in practices supporting older adults and their families and facilitating interdisciplinary team collaboration.
Karen is a core member of the Seniors Community of Practice and Anti-racist and Actions Committee of the British Columbia Association of Social Workers. She is also a long-term volunteer of Alzheimer’s Society BC as a family support group facilitator and public educator. She was awarded the Inspiring Social Worker of the Year in British Columbia 2021, which recognized her advocacy work with people with dementia from diverse cultural and language communities.