Awards and accolades: March 2022

Join us in celebrating some of the recent achievements of our alumni, students and faculty members.

31 March 2022

alumni accomplishments

A photo of Janaki Alavalapati

Congratulations to Janaki Alavalapati, ’90 MSc, ’95 PhD, the recipient of a 2021 Distinguished Alumni Award. The Distinguished Alumni Award is the Alumni Association's highest honour, recognizing the outstanding lifetime accomplishments of alumni who have earned national or international regard or have had significant local impact as a result of their outstanding professional achievements and/or service to society. Learn more about professor Alavalapati's research, leadership and many contributions to the fields of forest economics and energy affairs here and watch this video about his incredible impact. 

A photo of M. Anne Naeth.

Congratulations to M. Anne Naeth, ’76 BSc, ’85 MSc, ’88 PhD, who has received a 2021 Alumni Honour Award. These awards recognize the significant achievements and contributions by University of Alberta alumni over a number of years to their profession and/or their community. As director of the U of A's Future Energy Systems research program, the Energy Systems signature area and the ALES Land Reclamation International Graduate School, professor Naeth's leadership is an inspiration. Learn more about professor Naeth's many accomplishments here

A photo of Erasmus Okine.

Agricultural scientist Erasmus Okine, ’90 PhD, also received a 2021 Alumni Honour Award. Professor Okine's work has contributed to advancing post-secondary institutions in Alberta (as an award-winning U of A instructor and senior leader at the University of Lethbridge) as well as incredible work in industry and government. Learn more about professor Okine here

student success 

Congratulations to Adam Fast, one of three recipients of the 4th annual Rotary Club of Lethbridge East and Lethbridge & District Exhibition Agricultural Scholarship. This award, valued at $10,000, was funded by 14 southern Alberta businesses as well as local citizens supporting a silent auction and 50/50 draw. The scholarship was created by the Rotary Club of Lethbridge East and Lethbridge & District Exhibition to support future agricultural leaders from southern Alberta. Fast is a current MSc student studying plant science in the Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science

A big shoutout goes to Jéssica Chaves Cardoso who is pursuing research in natural resources and environmental studies in the Department of Renewable Resources for receiving funding for her proposal on boreal mixed wood resilience to drought under the Alberta Conservation Association's Grants in Biodiversity program. This program allows early career researchers to develop their research planning and writing skills and supports their fieldwork and is Cardoso's very first research grant! Cardoso's research will investigate the resilience of mixedwood stands to drought in Alberta as part of her PhD research project. Great work! 

This year, four students from the Faculty of ALES made it to the finals of the U of A's Three Minute Thesis competition, with one student named People's Choice Award winner! Congratulations to everyone who took part in this competition!

Hotaka Kobori

Hotaka Kobori, a second-year student in the Department of Resource Economics and Environmental Sociology, presented research on how the pandemic has influenced how much we value green spaces. Watch his presentation here.


Laura Woodman

Laura Woodman, a researcher in the Department of Human Ecology, presented "Creating the Village: Increasing Understanding and Supports for Alberta's Day Home Educators". With this work, Laura hopes to increase understanding and support for Alberta's family day home educators. Watch her presentation here



Members of the Ceres fraternity posing for a photo at their annual fundraiser.

Dilrukshi Kombala Liyanage

Dilrukshi Kombala Liyanage, a second-year student in the plant-microbe lab in the Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science, presented "Challenge the Drought" which focuses on her research to identify drought-tolerant soybean cultivators. Watch her presentation here.

Muhammad Zubair

Muhammad Zubair, a PhD candidate in the Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science, received the People's Choice Award in this year's Three Minute Thesis competition! Muhammad's presentation described his research project which uses chicken feathers as a derived filter for water purification. Watch his presentation here.



Congratulations to Ceres Alberta for exceeding their fundraising goal at their annual Women in Agriculture event to support the Ronald McDonald House of Edmonton! The group raised almost $11,000 at this year's charity banquet, which almost doubled the amount raised during last year's online event, and also exceeded the $6600 raised during the 2019 in-person event. 



Congratulations to professor Catherine Field and professor Carla Prado, both in the Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science, for earning awards from the Canadian Nutrition Society

A photo of Catherine Field on a CSN branded background that reads congratulations.

Catherine Field was awarded the honour of Canadian Nutrition Society Fellow Distinction which is an exclusive professional distinction that recognizes exceptional service to the Canadian Nutrition Society as well as the broader nutrition profession, within Canada and globally. Congratulations, professor Field! 

A photo of Carla Prado on a CSN branded background that reads congratulations.

Carla Prado received a Career Recognition Award for contributing to improving our knowledge and expertise in nutrition and helping to significantly advance the field of nutrition. Congratulations, professor Prado!

If you would like to submit information about an award for yourself or on behalf of a friend, colleague or peer, please complete and submit the Share Your News form.

*An earlier version of this story noted only two finalists of the 3MT competition. We apologize for the oversight.