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How do we inspire the next generation of neuroscientists who will find cures for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease? This is the mission of the Firefly Foundation in Toronto, and my community partner for Canada’s first hands-on Neuroscience summer research camp that runs every July at the University of Toronto Schools.


Hello! My name is Anand Mahadevan and I am one of the recipients of the 2015 Fulbright Community Leadership Program grants. Over the last three years, I have run Bright Lights in the Lab, a research based summer camp for kids in grades 6-12 in the greater Toronto area. This camp allows students to learn about neuroscience through hands-on inquiry activities and designing labs to measure action potential speeds in earthworms, rate coding in crickets, classical condition in fruit flies and nematodes as well as learning and behavior experiments using snails. Through our partners at the Department of Physiology, University of Toronto, we allow teenagers to meet and learn from graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and scientists at the forefront of innovative neuroscience in Canada. read more

The goal of this Fulbright Canada-U.S. Embassy in Ottawa Community Leadership Program project, led by Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) Professors Victor Armony and Bernard Duhaime, was to foster a conversation about the legacy of human rights violations and crimes against humanity in Latin America, particularly as part of a collective memory shared by many Canadians of Latin American heritage. The project’s core idea was that, by creating opportunities for the expression and exchange on these issues, it may become possible to preserve and help disseminate accounts of individual experiences by victims, to engage participants in understanding and discussing the history of state-sponsored political violence, persecution, and discrimination in Latin America, and to consider the implications of a duty of remembrance for Latin American diasporas—specific to their national origins but also as part of the larger Canadian story of inclusive citizenship and global responsibility to protect. The Latin American population in Canada is rapidly growing and integrating into the larger society. Compared to Hispanics in the United States, Canada’s Latinos constitute a much smaller, recent and diverse minority, one that as yet has not developed a full sense of community. However, there are some elements that point to an emerging common identity among Canadian Latin Americans, which are in part related to a shared experience of “low-intensity citizenship” and “incomplete democracy” in their countries of origin. In order to explore how the (personal or transmitted) memory of injustices committed by Latin American governments brings together individuals of different backgrounds, allows them to discuss their lasting effects, and also encourages them to formulate their idea of what a fully realized citizenship means, several activities were planned. read more

Are you ready to start your journey?