Congratulations to Elizabeth Henry Scholarship for Communities and Environmental Health winner, and School of Population and Public Health (SPPH) student, Matthew Wagstaff.
A Master of Science in Occupational and Environmental Hygiene candidate, Mr. Wagstaff’s thesis project, upon which the inaugural award was based, looks to develop a way to measure the contribution of woodsmoke to particulate matter in rural communities. Woodsmoke can lead to degraded air quality, and his field work, running from January to March, will involve monitoring six communities in B.C.
Smaller, more rural communities were more affected by woodsmoke, and several communities in the province failed to meet the annual air quality objective set by the government, Mr. Wagstaff said. “In terms of health impacts, exposure to ambient PM2.5 is associated with a wide range of acute and chronic health outcomes, particularly increased rates of cardiovascular and respiratory morbidity and mortality.”
“While I’m not sure what I want to do after graduation, I find the field of Environmental Health very interesting as exposures on this level affect entire communities and individuals generally do not have a choice as to whether they are exposed.”
Elizabeth Henry Scholarship for Communities and Environmental Health scholarship winner Matthew Wagstaff
Mr. Wagstaff’s supervisor, Professor Michael Brauer, said he was the complete package.
“An intelligent, deep thinker who is passionate about the environment, a strong communicator, a dedicated and hard worker with superb technical and problem-solving skills and maturity beyond his years”
Professor Michael Brauer
Mr. Wagstaff took up the award in September – congratulations to Mr. Wagstaff!