The Western Epidemiology and Biostatistics Student Council

The Western Epidemiology and Biostatistics Student Council (WEBSC) is the representative body of the students enrolled in the Epidemiology and Biostatistics program at Western University. The Council strives to build a close and collegial academic community, while ensuring the best possible student experience. We offer several events throughout the year, including Student Rounds, Journal Club, Barstool Research, as well as numerous career/academic workshops and networking opportunities. The Council meets monthly; all students in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics are encouraged to get involved. Our aim is to put students first and to ensure their voices are heard.

Any comments or questions can be addressed to the Co-Chairs at

See the Event Listing for any upcoming and recently held events.


Ongoing Programs

Travel Award Recipients


Aneeka Hafeez, MSc Candidate supervised by Sisira Sarma, PhD
Romaisa Pervez, MSc Candidate supervised by Dr. Saverio Stranges and Arlene MacDougall, PhD
Carina Iskander, MSc Candidate supervised by Dr. Amit Garg
Michael Hong, PhD Candidate supervised by Sisira Sarma, PhD

Student Rounds

Mission Statement

The Student Rounds of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Western University will be an ongoing opportunity for students to present and showcase their work in a safe and open environment that mimics a real-world professional setting. This student-led initiative will facilitate positive reinforcement and a means of developing invaluable presentation skills.


Specifically, we aim to:

1. Create an engaging and fun environment where students can share their work (e.g. thesis work, work or academic side research, extracurricular research of interest)

2. Promote the exchange of constructive feedback and suggestions from colleagues

3. Improve students’ presentation skills including:

  • Confidence presenting in front of an audience using different media (powerpoint, posters, etc.)
  • Speaking with clarity
  • Effectively communicating their own ideas and findings to their peers
  • Cohesively and effectively answering questions with no advance preparation

Journal Club

Mission Statement

The Journal Club of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Western University will provide a safe and inviting space for students of all experience-levels to thoroughly and collaboratively discuss impactful literature. This student-driven club strives to empower all participants to discuss and critically appraise the scientific pieces relevant to the subject-specific disciplines, the methodological processes, and practices of epidemiology and biostatistics.


Our primary aim is to support academic engagement to expand the knowledge and exposure of students to the stimulating field of epidemiology and biostatistics. We will use an oral presentation format, which will facilitate interactive feedback and discussion. Specifically, we aim to:

  • Create an engaging and fun environment of shared learning for students
  • Encourage critical thinking and appraisal of journal articles and discussion of important epidemiological concepts
  • Support the exchange of constructive feedback and suggestions from colleagues in a supportive environment
  • Improve participants’ competences and confidence in leading discussions and resolving conflicts
  • Refine presentation, communication, and teaching skills, generally, and in preparation for conference presentations or oral defence exams
  • Foster a core skillset that will assist students in future epidemiological endeavours

Barstool Research

Mission Statement

Barstool Research is an opportunity for students and community members to meet casually and engage in thought-provoking discussions about the future of science and discovery. The event runs monthly and is open to everyone. The venue will be posted two weeks prior to the scheduled event. Channeling the philosopher in us all, Barstool Research is an exciting forum that fosters stimulating dialogue and the passionate exchange of experiences, imaginations, and ideas.


At each session a different topic will be posed as a question that begins with “What if...” This question will be kept a secret until the beginning of the event. Our primary aim is to provide a lively space that inspires free-flowing and candid discussions around futuristic, mind-expanding topics. What if people of diverse backgrounds and perspectives were engaged in unordinary and influential conversations?

Teaching Excellence Award


The Teaching Excellence Award winner is chosen by graduate students in year 2 of their studies by way of an annonymous ranked vote (students choose their first, second and third place instructors). Beginning in 2020, the award will not be bestowed to the same person two years in a row. If the votes indicate an instructor who was the winner the previous year, the instructor with the second highest count of first place votes will receive the award.


  • 1994-1995: Dr. James Roberston
  • 1995-1996: Dr. Neil Klar
  • 1996-1997: Dr. Truls Ostbye
  • 1997-1998: Dr. Michael Eliasziw
    Dr. Kathy Speechley
    Dr. Brian Feagan
    and Dr. Jeffrey Mahon
  • 1998-2000: Dr. Allan Donner
    Dr. Jeffrey Mahon
    Dr. Brian Feagan
    and Dr. Kelly Zarnke
  • 2000-2001: Dr. Kathy Speechely
  • 2001-2002: Dr. M. Karen Campbell
  • 2002-2003: Dr. John Koval
  • 2003-2004: Dr. Jeffrey Hoch
  • 2004-2005: Dr. John Koval
  • 2005-2006: Dr. Greta Bauer
    and Dr. Neil Klar
  • 2006-2007: Dr. Allan Donner
  • 2007-2008: Dr. Kathy Speechley
  • 2008-2009: Data Not Available
  • 2009-2010: Dr. Neil Klar
  • 2010-2011: Dr. Neil Klar
  • 2011-2012: Dr. Allan Donner
  • 2012-2013: Dr. Janet Martin
  • 2013-2014: Dr. Greta Bauer
  • 2014-2015: Dr. Kathy Speechley
  • 2015-2016: Dr. Guangyong Zou
  • 2016-2017: Dr. Greta Bauer
  • 2017-2018: Dr. Kelly Anderson
  • 2018-2019: Dr. Kathy Speechley

Student Representative Listing

Epidemiology And Biostatistics Students’ Council

  • Co-chairs: Gillian Young, Samina Idrees
  • Secretary: Ethan Rajaratnam
  • Events Coordinators: Gabrielle Alimorad, Michael Huang
  • Special Events Coordinators: Jen Xiao, Johnny Anagnostopoulos
  • SOGS Representatives: Mariela Leda, Rhiannon Lyons
  • Schulich Representatives: Lux Li, Natalie Zitoun
  • GTA Steward: Tresah Antaya
  • EDI Representatives: Maliha Mamun, Yasaman Hajiesmaeili
  • Communications Coordinator: Shreni Patel, Munan Kong
  • Wellness Representatives: Majd Radhaa, Chenyang Li

2020-2021 (to be updated to 2021-2022 soon)

Canadian Society of Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CSEB)
  • Chair: Youmi Dickson
  • Event planners: Jared Wooten and Tasneem Lalva
  • Graduate representative: Tasneem Lalva
  • PhD representative: Michael Hong
  • Undergraduate representative: Ronald Chow
  • Internal affairs officer: James Im
  • External affairs officer: Youmi Dickson

Please visit our CSEB Page.