University of Toronto Magazine University of Toronto Magazine
Rebecca Bartel.
Rebecca Bartel.

Global Leaders

Prestigious new award from the W. Garfield Weston Foundation will enable PhD students to conduct research abroad

Sixteen doctoral students have received $50,000 each to further their research and broaden their skills and professional networks in a global setting, as part of the new W. Garfield Weston Foundation Doctoral Fellowship Program at U of T. The students – in their third and fourth year of study – hail from diverse fields ranging from geography and computer science to public health, and were chosen for their leadership qualities.

The Weston Fellowships are Canada’s most prestigious awards dedicated to international experience at the doctoral level. They enable recipients to undertake research abroad for their dissertations, such as field and archival work that can only be done in situ, and provide them with an opportunity to work collaboratively with people from other cultures, gaining new perspectives and expertise. The first phase of the Weston Fellowship program will run through 2015 and will support 48 students with total funding of $2.4 million.

Rebecca Bartel, a PhD candidate in religion, is one of the inaugural Weston Fellows. She says the award will enable her to continue her research into social activism around economic integration, peace building and the role of new financial systems in Colombia. She is particularly interested in understanding how faith and finance intersect in the country, which is emerging both economically and socially.

To read more about the inaugural Weston Fellows, visit

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