The Alberta Diabetes Institute realizes that science progresses quickly and the constant renewal of people and expertise is critical to success and longevity. Trainees such as MSc, PhD graduate students and postdoctoral fellows represent this renewal and the future generations of highly qualified personnel for healthcare, pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors in Canada. The ADI offers trainees a rich and unique environment for developing research skills and pursuing novel research in their fields.
There are also opportunities to expand their horizons - basic scientists are able to collaborate with clinical scientists or even community health researchers. Together with the Alberta Diabetes Foundation the ADI raises funds that are used to support numerous trainees each year in the form of living allowances and travel awards for attending conferences. The vibrant trainee environment is enhanced by weekly seminars and an annual research event that gives trainees the chance to showcase their research and develop presentation skills. Each year over 80 MSc/PhD students and over 40 postdoctoral fellows train at the ADI.
In the past five years trainees have received 174 institutional, 105 provincial and 124 national or international awards and prizes. ADI scientists also lead Aboriginal community outreach programs that screen for elevated risk and monitor for signs of diabetes. These are excellent training and career opportunities designed for program administration by Aboriginal community members. Their direct involvement in diabetes research benefits research outcomes by incorporating cultural influences into decision making and understanding social pressures.