Erika Murray

Graduate student, Chemical Engineering

Erika Murray wants to find a cure for diabetes. She is working on a stem cell research project that looks at the cellular effects of a new diabetes drug INGAP on mesenchymal stem cells isolated from human pancreases. Her goal? To coax those cells to produce insulin to finally beat the disease.

“In the future, the field of regenerative medicine combined with tissue engineering has the potential to revolutionize current medical treatments,” says the chemical engineering doctoral student.

As well as conducting life-changing research, Murray volunteers as a member of Waterloo’s Women in Engineering Committee and as the chapter coordinator of the Canadian Association for Girls in Science (CAGIS). A 2009 recipient of a University of Waterloo President’s Circle Award for volunteerism, she says giving back to the community through research and volunteering just makes sense.

“When I was younger I had a lot of encouragement. I want to pass that along.”