Jan 25, 2024

Humans of LMP: Malik White

Programs: Graduate, Agile education, Research: Brain & Neuroscience, Inclusive community
Malik White

Each month we speak to a member of the Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology community and find out more about them as part of an initiative from our Wellness, Inclusion, Diversity and Equity Committee (WIDE).

This month we feature MSc student, Malik White, who is part of the Aubert Lab at Sunnybrook.

Visit the Humans of LMP page to read more stories and nominate yourself or others to be featured.

What are you studying at LMP and why are you interested in studying it?  

I'm working on a cool project that combines FUS and gene therapy to deliver more effective treatment directly to the brain, aiming to counteract problems related to dementia and other brain diseases. The current challenge is that existing methods use a lot of gene therapy and can sometimes cause side effects by delivering treatment to unintended parts of the body.

What is the most interesting thing you’ve done, seen, or got involved with while at LMP? 

I’m interested in my project, as my work is looking to bridge a gap in the field. Brain health declines with aging, due to many reasons. As of now, there is limited interjection we can do to maintain brain health in aging individuals. Through my work, I hope that we can achieve a good way to deliver treatments across the entire brain, so we can ensure that the brain ages…. 

What was the best career advice you ever received?  

"Stop and smell the roses every once in a while" – This is a great reminder to just enjoy the journey. We get caught up in the "what’s next" often in science, but this quote reminds me to take in how special the work is that we get to do!

What has been an important learning experience in your life?  

Burnout is real, though you can work long hours over a few days or even a few weeks, your body will always catch up to you. Planning your breaks and sticking to them tightly will do wonders for yourself and your work efficiency!

Who is an influential person in your life and why?  

The most influential people in my life are my parents. Watching them move our family from Jamaica to Canada when I was only five and picking up with what seemed like without missing a beat. Between navigating their careers, re-establishing themselves in a new country, and even juggling going back for MBA degrees all while still having the time to take me to my many games and club activities burned into me a sense of community we can often lack as immigrant families. 

What would it surprise people to know about you? 

At two years old I could read books independently!

What activities do you enjoy doing outside of work? 

Outside of work, I love to take part in physical activity. I have been a part of the intramural program from D-League to recreational for the past six years I have been at U of T! Aside from this, I frequent the athletic center and other community gyms and courts to partake in basketball, volleyball and weightlifting.

What is your favourite album, film and novel? 

Album – Janet Jackson: The Velvet Rope

Movie: Spiderman 2 – Across the Spider-verse

Novel: Scarborough - Catherine Hernandez

Who would be your dream dinner guests? 

My dream dinner guest would be Leonel Messi. 

Where/what is your favourite place? 

Montego Bay – Jamaica or any beach!

If you were stuck on a deserted island but had all your basic needs taken care of (i.e. food and water), what two items would you bring with you and why?

I would bring a soccer ball to kick around and any electronic device to play Hip-hop music.