Alumna Madeleine Brodbeck wins Prestigious NSERC Funding

Madeleine Brodbeck

Algoma University is pleased to announce that recent graduate Madeleine Brodbeck has been awarded a prestigious Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Scholarship, valued at $17,500.

“Madeleine has a bright future in the field of psychology,” said Academic Dean, Dr. Richard McCutcheon. “Winning both the Governor General’s Silver Medal and an NSERC scholarship in the same year is a significant accomplishment for an undergraduate student. We are pleased to see her hard work recognized by NSERC and wish her the very best in her future endeavors at Western University.”

The Canada Graduate Scholarships-Master’s (CGS M) Program helps develop research skills and assist in the training of highly qualified personnel by supporting students who demonstrate a high standard of achievement in undergraduate and early graduate studies. The CGS M Program provides financial support to high-calibre scholars who are engaged in eligible masters or doctoral programs in Canada. The CGS M Program supports 2,500 students annually in all disciplines and is administered jointly by Canada’s three federal granting agencies: the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC).

Brodbeck is a resident of Sault Ste. Marie, and graduated from the International Baccalaureate program at Korah Collegiate and Vocational School. This past June, she graduated from the University’s Psychology program. In April, she defended her fourth-year honours thesis, titled “The Short-Term Effects of Action and Non-Action Video Game Play on Attention”, which examined the difference between the attention spans on video game players and non-video game players. She has worked as a Teaching Assistant at the University, and has received two Undergraduate Student Research Awards (USRA) with NSERC. In her final year of studies, she was invited to give a presentation titled “Attention to Acoustic Features in a Spatial Task” at the “Conference on Comparative Cognition” in Florida, a rare opportunity for undergraduate students.

Even more impressive, Brodbeck was this year’s Governor General’s Silver Medal recipient. The Silver Medal was established in 1873 and is one of the most prestigious awards that can be received by a student in a Canadian educational institution. The Silver Medal is awarded to the undergraduate student who achieves the highest academic standing upon graduation from a Bachelor’s degree program. Brodbeck graduated from Algoma U with an astounding 93.6 percent average.

In September, Brodbeck will begin her two-year Masters of Science in Psychology at Western University in London, Ontario. She will be studying animal cognition, specifically birds, and will most likely be using cooling coils to temporarily legion the hippocampus (the part of the brain responsible for memory and spatial navigation).. She has also been awarded a paid Teaching Assistantship.

“Being awarded this funding was a great honour,” said Brodbeck. “It will not only help cover tuition and book costs, but it will also help me with my day to day living. The CGS M will allow me to focus more on my research and studies, and therefore it will help me develop the skills necessary to becoming a great graduate student.”

Brodbeck is one of three Algoma U Psychology graduates from the Class of 2015 to receive hefty government funding for graduate school.

About Algoma University

Algoma University offers a wide variety of liberal arts and sciences degree options including programs in Psychology, Computer Science, Business Administration, Fine Arts, Community Economic & Social Development, and Biology in Sault Ste. Marie, Brampton and Timmins. As a partner with Shingwauk Kinoomaage Gamig, Algoma U is committed to respecting Anishinaabe knowledge and culture. To learn more about Algoma University, visit