Paul Kim is a biochemistry student at the University of Victoria. Passionate about science, he is committed to utilizing his education to have a far reaching, positive impact in healthcare and medicine. During two Co-op terms, Paul has met world leaders in his field, completed innovative research, and witnessed scientific discovery up close – inspiring his future learning and propelling his personal development. He has proven himself to be a dedicated student, disciplined researcher and inspiring leader during his time at UVic.

Paul Kim is the 2016 ACE Co-op of the Year for the University category.

Kim secured his first co-op work term performing research at the Centre for Microbial Diseases and Immunity Research (funded by the Centre for Blood Research). After receiving a Science Undergraduate Research Award from UVic, he was offered the chance to work alongside Dr. Julian Lum at the BC Cancer Agency Deeley Research Centre, where he conducted research involving lymphocyte infiltration in tumour microenvironments—research that could contribute to streamlining cancer treatments in the future.

“My work term at the Deeley Research Centre was one of the first opportunities I had to create an impact in a field that I’m truly passionate about,” he says. Having watched people close to him struggle with the disease, he jumped on the chance to make a difference in leading cancer research.

Kim’s work not only added a great deal of understanding on basic lymphocyte biology, but also provided Lum’s lab with a strong backbone for future research grants. “Paul’s performance and work were nothing short of outstanding, and his contributions to the lab have been enormous,” says Lum. “He’s demonstrated outstanding passion, drive, commitment and integrity.”

“Applying my university education to groundbreaking research helped me to see the bigger picture of my degree.”

For Kim, experiential learning has been a crucial aspect of his university education.  “Through co-op, I learned that the only way to bridge the gap between my university education and the fast-paced environment of a research lab was to work in that setting,” he says. “Applying my university education to groundbreaking research helped me to see the bigger picture of my degree.”

As a vocal proponent of co-op on and off campus, Kim is eager to continue building strong relationships and working on collaborative projects in future work terms. “Working with inspiring researchers has developed me into a lifelong learner,” he says. “I am looking forward to creating synergies through co-op that will ultimately generate large-scale impact in the medical field.”