Fliss, Matthew

Matthew Fliss is a graduate student, working on his Master of Science (MSc) in Kinesiology. He was recently awarded the esteemed Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP) 2021 Graduate Student Award for MSc Poster Presentation. The award acknowledges the outstanding graduate research that is presented at CSEP’s Graduate Student Poster Award Session. Winning the award was momentous for Matthew, as it is the first academic award he has received, and it proved to him how important his research is within the scientific community. “I had decently long conversations with two of the three judges,” remarks Matthew, “and one of them happened to be researching a similar topic to mine, so we talked about collaborating in the future.”

Before starting his MSc at UBC, he graduated from McMaster University in 2019 with an Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology. When asked about his mentors and who impacted him along his journey, Matthew stated McMaster university professors Dr. Stuart Phillips and Dr. Robert Morton as his biggest inspirations. Both were pivotal in his decision to continue his research at UBC: “Dr. Morton is the primary reason I’m at UBC today as he gave me the opportunity to excel in the lab and allowed me to discover my passion for muscle physiology research.”

Matthew’s love for sports ignited his passion for kinesiology before starting his bachelor’s, but an MSc was his opportunity to “answer his own questions” and “direct his own learning” in the field. Under the supervision of Dr. Cameron Mitchell, assistant professor in UBCKin, Matthew is currently researching the effects of higher- and lower-load resistance exercise training on muscle growth, strength, and endurance in the upper and lower body. He shares that there has never been a conversation with Dr. Mitchell that did not leave him curious to learn more. “It’s fun to try and hunt down the answer,” states Matthew, “and if there isn’t an answer, Dr. Mitchell and I can be the ones to try and find one.”

In January 2022, Matthew plans to start his Ph.D. also under Dr. Mitchell’s supervision to further expand on his current thesis research. In addition to his full-time studies, he works as a strength and conditioning coach at UBC. He enjoys volleyball and beach volleyball, but a sport he would love to learn is skiing. He also loves dogs, Sunday hikes, and reading on the beach during the summertime.