Scholarship for Graduate Dementia Research by Black Students


This Toronto Dementia Research Alliance (TDRA) scholarship was created to respond to the historical under-representation of Black students and faculty in research, particularly in the field of dementia research.

 Scholarship is open to:

  • Masters ($10k/year for 2 years; $20k total) and PhD ($15k/year for 2 years; $30k total) students
  • Domestic and international applicants (living in or planning to move and study in Canada)
  • Those who identify as Black

About the Scholarship:

  • Application will be assessed on merit and grades
  • The project must have some connection to a TDRA investigator or partner site
  • Applicants must:
    • Have a pending application to a Master’s or Doctoral program;
    • Have received or accepted an offer of admission to a Master’s or Doctoral program; OR
    • Be currently enrolled in a Master’s or Doctoral program with at least two years of the program remaining
  • A community-specific mentorship network will be accessible to each awardee 
  • Projects can explore any aspect of dementia, for example Western medicine/science, traditional medicine, quantitative or qualitative projects, social determinants of health, etc.


  • Should have a strong background in EDI and reconciliation.

If you have any questions, email


The TDRA is now accepting applications for this Scholarship.

Download applicationApplications are due to TDRA on June 30th, 2024. 

Please send your application to

Meet the 2023-24 Graduate Dementia Research Scholars

Two exceptional candidates were selected as recipients of TDRA’s inaugural Scholarship for Graduate Dementia Research by Black Students: Tristin Best and Chinaza Dibia. Tristin Best, a PhD candidate, is collaborating with Dr. Howard Chertkow at Baycrest Health Sciences Centre. Chinaza Dibia, also a PhD candidate, is working with Dr. Isabelle Aubert at Sunnybrook Health Science Centre.

To supplement this scholarship opportunity, TDRA assembled a community-specific mentorship network to further engage the successful applicants; they include Dr. Mireille Norris from Sunnybrook Health Science Centre and Dr. Notisha Massaquoi from the University of Toronto.

Tristin Best

Tristin Best

Tristin Best is currently enrolled in a PhD program at Concordia University under the supervision of Dr. Natalie Phillips. He will be pursuing a research practicum in Dr. Howard Chertkow’s lab at Baycrest Health Sciences Centre, which will focus on exploring olfactory dysfunction as a potential predictor of Alzheimer Disease in individuals experiencing subjective cognitive decline. Tristin completed an undergraduate degree in Psychology from Concordia University and an MSc in Neuroscience at McGill University where he examined the role of subcortical and cerebellar structures in neuropsychiatric and behavioural symptomatology in genetic frontotemporal dementia. Finally, Tristin has significant life experience with dementia and other brain disorders, through caregiving roles with family and in a volunteer capacity in the community.

Chinaza Dibia

Chinaza Dibia

Chinaza Dibia is currently enrolled in a PhD program at the University of Toronto under the supervision of Dr. Isabelle Aubert of Sunnybrook Health Science Centre.  She is investigating innovative non-invasive gene delivery methods to treat Alzheimer Disease-affected brain regions. Her research work will further the understanding of the potential and challenges of two remarkable technologies with possible life-changing impacts for patients with dementia - focused ultrasound and gene therapy. Chinaza completed her undergraduate degree at Nnamdi Azikewe and her MSc at the University of Ilorin, both in Nigeria. Through volunteer opportunities at institutions such as Regions Stroke and Neuroscience Hospital and Asata Health Centre in Nigeria, Chinaza gained empathy and understanding for people living with dementia and other neurological disorders.