The idea for the First Canadian National Undergraduate Bioethics Conference
comes from a student who was partially funded by St. Francis Xavier
University to attend one of the annual National Undergraduate Bioethics
Conferences held in the United States.
By the time this conference takes place, the United States will have
hosted 5 such conferences, so it becomes quickly apparent that many
Canadian undergraduate students have a lot of ground to cover in order
to catch up. The first of these initiatives was organized and held by
Princeton University, with subsequent conferences hosted by: University
of Virginia, University of Notre Dame, Emory University, and Boston
The St. Francis Xavier University "BioethiX Society" was ratified
in the Fall of 2001 and it is the members of the BioethiX Society that
are primarily responsible for organizing this conference (St. Francis
Xavier University is warmly referred to as "X" by its students).
As many bioethical questions can be first understood only in the context
of the structures of the medical and legal systems of a particular society,
it makes sense that many questions raised at the annual conference in
the United States are discussed in terms of the United States healthcare
and legal systems.
One of the main aspirations of this Canadian undergraduate conference
initiative is that these questions be discussed in a context as familiar
to Canadians as the context in which questions are discussed at the
conferences in the United States is familiar to Americans. This entails
the discussion of contemporary bioethical issues in terms of the Canadian
healthcare and legal systems, which will be a focus at this conference.
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Francis Xavier University BioethiX Society