Centenary Medal – Merrilee Hughes

Merrilee is a double UBC alumna with a Bachelor’s of Medical Laboratory Science (BMLSc ‘99) and a Master’s of Journalism (MJ ‘01). After gaining bench science experience in laboratories at the BC Centre for Disease Control and St. Paul’s Hospital, she expanded her sights to communicating health research to a wider audience. She specialized in how benefits and risks of pharmaceuticals are communicated in the mass media. Merrilee has held editing positions with science publisher Springer-Verlag in Germany, Canadian Blood Services in Ottawa, and grant writing contracts with large research teams. She returned to academia to manage studies on the quality of online health reporting at UBC’s School of Population and Public Health. In 2006, she was recruited as the grant facilitator in the UBC School of Nursing where she strives to respond to the diverse needs of the School. This includes supporting Nursing faculty and graduate trainees across diverse funding agencies, managing faculty award nominations, as well as spearheading innovative knowledge translation activities. In 2011, she was selected as a volunteer grant development advisor in UBC’s Leave for Change program with a 3-week placement in Kathmandu, Nepal. In 2014, she completed a one-year secondment as the manager of the Men’s Depression & Suicide Network in the School of Nursing. She continues in her primary grant facilitator role to contribute across a wide range of activities within the School.  In her spare time, she is a budding calligrapher, painter, writer of free verse, and global traveler.