Dr. Martin McLoughlin, a professor of surgery, has been named as one of the winners of the 1997 Aboriginal Achievement Awards.

Now in its third year, the awards honour aboriginal people who have made outstanding contributions to society and who serve as role models for aboriginal youth.

McLoughlin, who obtained his MD from UBC in 1968, has been on faculty at the university since 1977 in the urology division of the Dept. of Surgery. He served as chair of the division for 10 years.

He is now working toward the establishment of a First Nations hospital in the Lower Mainland.

McLoughlin will receive his award from Gov. Gen. Romeo LeBlanc at a gala ceremony Feb. 7 in Calgary. The ceremony will be broadcast Feb. 13 on CBC-TV.

Sharon Manson Singer, assistant professor in the School of Social Work, is the province's new deputy minister of Human Resources.

Manson Singer received her MSW from UBC, specializing in socio-economic policy, before completing her PhD in social welfare economics at Brandeis University.

A member of the faculty since 1988, her research interests include health and social policy, income security, AIDS and health promotion.

Active in community service, she has served on the Social Planning and Research Council of B.C., the Canadian Council on Social Development, the National Forum on Family Security, the Women's Economist Network and the Canadian Association of HIV/AIDS Research.

Most recently she chaired the B.C. Minister of Social Services Income Assistance Advisory Council, the Premier's Forum on New Opportunities for Working and Living and the premier's Summit on the New Economy of B.C.

Richard Splane, professor emeritus in the School of Social Work, has received the 1996 Distinguished Service Award of the International Council on Social Welfare (ICSW). The award was conferred at the council's 27th conference held recently in Hong Kong.

Splane was recognized for his contributions to international social development, including his work promoting the collaboration of ICSW and the kindred organizations representing the social work profession and education in the field.

Splane and his wife, Verna, were inducted into the Order of Canada last year and were jointly awarded honorary doctorates at UBC's 1996 Spring Congregation. Last year also saw the launch of Splane's book, 75 Years of Community Service to Canada: The Canadian Council on Social Development 1920-1995.

UBC's world debate team returned from the World Debating Championships in South Africa last month just one point short of advancing to the final round. This is only UBC's second appearance in the international competition which attracts teams from Oxford, Cambridge, Yale and Harvard.

World team members Christopher Moreno, a master's student in Applied Ethics and Western Canada's top-ranked debater, and third-year law student Justine Wiltshire, a semi-finalist at Oxford's Debater of the Year competition, competed in nine rounds. Debate topics included international law, South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, human rights, the European Union and its trade agreements, and legalizing same sex adoption.

Combined, Moreno and Wiltshire have 11 years of debating experience and are the current Western Canada debating champions.

Moreno made the semi-final round of public speaking at this year's world competition, also a first for UBC.