CBU Students Recognized By Canadian Psychological Association

Two Cape Breton University graduates, Jillian Burns and Paula LeBlanc,have been awarded a Canadian Psychological Association Certificate of Academic Excellence for an Honours Thesis. The certificate is awarded to recognize outstanding achievements made by students at all levels of study in each Canadian department of psychology.The students were nominated by the CBU psychology department.

jillian burns and paula leblanc Burns, a native of New Waterford, N.S., received the award for her work on a new method to study conversations between strangers, specifically the different ways in which men and women communicate with each other and the reasons for those differences. “I was shocked, I didn't expect the award at all but I was very happy to have received it. It feels great to be recognized for all of the hard work I put into my thesis for the past year,” says the Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Psychology graduate.

Leblanc, who also graduated with a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Psychology,was recognized for her work on a study of the connection between personality and mental health indices in the U.S., at the state level.  Her research takes advantage of large databases to find connections between personality and mental health that have previously been studied primarily among individuals. 

“My experience at Cape Breton University was great, and provided me with experiences that I would not have had at a larger university.  In my experience the most unique aspect of CBU was the amount of support I was provided with; not only from my classmates, but also the faculty.  During my final year at CBU I was given unconditional support from my thesis advisor, Dr. Stewart McCann; and was also given the opportunity to work as a research assistant for Dr. Geoff Carre.  I am very pleased that I received my undergraduate degrees from Cape Breton University,” says Leblanc, a native of Sydney Mines, N.S.

Both award recipients graduated from CBU in May 2011. Leblanc is set to begin a Bachelor of Social Work degree at Dalhousie University while Burns plans to start her career locally to gain valuable experience before possibly attending graduate school.

“The students have done a remarkable job conducting their research.  These were two very complex projects and the students had to be ambitious to undertake the work.  Their success reflects an enormous amount of effort and they deserve full credit for their achievements. In both cases, the research they have done is of professional quality,” says Dr. Peter MacIntyre, Professor of Psychology, School of Science and Technology.

For more information please visit www.cpa.ca/aboutcpa/cpaawards/certificateofacademicexcellence