Campus Life

McDonald earns visiting fellowship to Oxford University

University of Lethbridge neuroscience professor Dr. Robert McDonald has been elected for a prestigious visiting fellowship appointment at Corpus Christi College at Oxford University in spring 2015.

Dr. Rob McDonald and his family will live in a university-sponsored flat in one of Oxford's ancient buildings.

McDonald is a University of Lethbridge Board of Governors Research Chair and the current director of the Canadian Centre for Behavioural Neuroscience. He is currently heading a number of research programs, including: an investigation of the effects of exposure to THC during puberty on adult cognitive functioning; the effects of circadian dysfunction, found in shift workers and the aged, on brain and body health; as well as developing alternative models for the cause of the sporadic form of Alzheimer’s disease.

“It’s a great honour to receive this appointment to Corpus Christi College, one of Oxford’s older colleges,” says McDonald of Corpus Christi, founded in 1517 as a centre for new learning in the University of Oxford. “It’s also a great opportunity for myself and my family. We’ll live in one of the ancient buildings on campus and I’ll have the opportunity to give talks to different departments and establish collaborative relationships with some of the world’s leading neuroscience experts.”

The Visiting Research Fellows program consists of the election of one or more Visiting Fellows and Scholars. The program is intended for persons of high academic distinction.

Among other research areas, McDonald will investigate the role of context in learning and memory processes; the role of mini-stroke in Alzheimer’s disease; orbital frontal cortex contributions to anxiety; and the molecular basis of circadian-mediated memory impairments.

“I expect these collaborations will add significantly to my own training program and eventually lead to trainee exchanges between the University of Lethbridge and Oxford University,” says McDonald.

Having McDonald chosen for this appointment is testament to the world-class research program he leads and the quality of teaching and research students can access within the Canadian Centre for Behavioural Neuroscience.

“The strength of our research programs at the U of L can be found in the quality of its faculty members and Dr. McDonald is an example of this,” says U of L Vice-President (Research) Dr. Dan Weeks. “Dr. McDonald is a world-leader in his field, who will contribute greatly in many important collaborations with Oxford researchers.”

McDonald’s appointment commences in March 2015 and is for three months.