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BIPOC in STEM : Bravo, Vollant and Tu

Updated: Jan 6, 2022

This month, we recognize three individuals who made outstanding contributions to science!

Helia Bravo Hollis was a Mexican botanist born on September 30, 1901 in Mixcoac, which is located in present day Mexico City. Bravo studied at the College of Sciences at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). Bravo also performed research in the Faculty of Science at UNAM. Bravo received several distinctions as well as national and international recognitions. The Helia Bravo Hollis Botanical Garden in Puebla, Mexico was named after her and is home to many endangered cactus species. Nine taxa of the flora and fauna of Mexico have been appointed in her honour. Throughout her career, Bravo contributed over 160 publications, 60 taxonomy descriptions, and 59 reclassifications.


Dr. Stanley Vollant is the first Innu surgeon in Québec! He has inspired and helped Indigenous youth to fulfill their dreams. Dr. Vollant studied medicine at the Université de Montréal and finished his residency in general surgery in 1994. He was elected as the president of the Québec Medical Association in 2001 and served as Director of the Aboriginal Program at the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Medicine.


Tu Youyou became the first woman from the People’s Republic of China to receive the Nobel Prize in 2015! She shared the Nobel in Physiology or Medicine with two other scientists They discovered artemisinin and dihydroartemisinin - these drugs treated malaria. Tu Youyou currently works as a Pharmaceutical Chemist and is also the first Chinese person to receive the Lasker Award.


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