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Promising talent

$1.9 million in federal support for multidisciplinary graduate student researchers

By Jeff Green

More than 50 graduate students are sharing more than $1.9 million in funding to support diverse research projects ranging from exploring Islamophobia to social entrepreneurship.

On Jan. 12, the federal government announced the latest recipients of several tri-agency scholarships and fellowships programs.

Graduate students based in the faculties of Business Administration, Humanities and Social Sciences, Medicine, Engineering and Applied Science, Education and Science, and the schools of Music, Social Work, Science and the Environment, Fisheries and Fine Arts are among those receiving support.

The funding comes from programs such as the Canada Graduate Scholarships – Doctoral program, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Doctoral Fellowships program, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Postgraduate Scholarships – Doctoral program, the Canada Graduate Scholarships – Master’s program and others.

‘Hugely important’

David Finch, a PhD candidate in the Department of Archaeology, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, has received a Canada Graduate Scholarship – Doctoral program valued at $105,000.

Smiling and wearing a green shirt, hat, sunglasses and backpack, David Finch stands in front a waterfall and trees.
David Finch is one of 50 Memorial graduate students who are sharing more than $1.9 million in research funding.
Photo: Submitted

He is completing his degree under the supervision of Dr. Scott Neilsen, assistant professor and co-ordinator, certificate in Indigenous Studies, School of Arctic and Subarctic Studies and the Department of Archaeology, as well as Dr. Lisa Rankin, professor and Memorial University Research Chair, Northern Indigenous Community Archaeology, Department of Archaeology.

Mr. Finch is working on a community-based archaeology project, which was designed in conjunction with the Innu Nation.

“My research has three parts: interviews with people involved with Innu heritage, a review of how other jurisdictions approach their own cultural resources and an archaeological field survey with Innu crew,” he told the Gazette.

“The last part builds local archaeological skills so communities are less dependent on outside researchers, plus it’s a way for all of us to engage with Innu culture.”

“[My research is] important to me personally, but I think also to Canada and Labrador.” — David Finch

Mr. Finch and his family spent years living in mining towns in northern Manitoba and Ontario. He says he has always felt at home in the North.

“My graduate research brings together many different threads – the North, Indigenous issues, land use, and how to reconcile complicated histories,” he said. “These are important to me personally, but I think also to Canada and Labrador.”

He says research funding for graduate students is “hugely important.”

“I am happy with how things have worked out and I hope that other students can get the same assurance.”

‘New generation’

Dr. Amy Warren, interim associate vice-president (academic) and dean of graduate studies, says the investment empowers the next generation of researchers.

“Federal funding for students is an integral part of graduate education,” Dr. Warren told the Gazette. “And it is of the utmost importance as we lead these emerging scholars into ground-breaking research, both in terms of the methods they will use for research as well as the research areas they will undertake.

“Increased funding will allow these new generations of scholars help lend their expertise to endeavours that will no doubt change the world we live in for the better.”

Below is the full list of Memorial award recipients.

SSHRC recipients

CGS Doctoral

  • Beth A. Downey, Department of English. Representations of Il/literacy in Contemporary Canadian Atlantic Fiction, $105,000
  • Siham Elkassem, School of Social Work. Exploring Islamophobia Through the Lived Experiences of Muslim Youth, $105,000
  • David M. Finch, Department of Archaeology. Practicing Heritage: Community-based Archaeology and Learning in Labrador, $105,000
  • Shannon C. Fraser, Interdisciplinary PhD Program. Down and Out in a Post-Work World: Social Suffering, Socioeconomic Exclusion and Therapeutic Governance, $105,000
  • Sharon A. King-Campbell, Department of English. Plays in a Pandemic: COVID-19 precautions and the performer-to-spectator connection, $105,000
  • Kathryn Prowse, Department of English. Shakespearean Dance, Embodiment, and Gender at the National Ballet of Canada and the Royal Ballet, $105,000

Total: $630,000

SSHRC Doctoral

  • Maro Adjemian, Department of Geography. Conquest and resistance: Re-mapping development, Indigenous territory, and life projects in Panama, $60,000
  • Mohammad Farshad Amini, Faculty of Business Administration. Visualizing a Social Entrepreneurship Ecosystem to Address Food Insecurity in Rural NL, $40,000
  • Mariah Cooper, Department of History. The Body of Proof: Rape in Middle English Romance and Law, $20,000
  • Robert Pozeg, Faculty of Education. Permission to Dissent: Urban youth inciting social change through personal storytelling, $20,000

Total: $140,000

CGS Master’s

  • Sarah Bartlett, Ethnomusicology. Co-operating for Music Education, $17,500
  • Lacy N. Custance, Department of English. Patriarchal Oppression and Fixation on Beauty in Disney Princess Mythology, $17,500
  • Kaitlyn A. Fortune, Department of Sociology. So you’re a stripper?’: Athletics and Empowerment in the Real World of Pole, $17,500
  • Holly Fox, Department of Political Science. Fat Chance: The Effects of Race, Gender, and Size on Candidate Evaluation, $17,500
  • Heidi Haering, Department of Anthropology. Increasing Corporate Land Ownership and Its effect on Rural PEI Communities, $17,500
  • Kellyann M. Henderson, School of Fine Arts. The Plastic Flamingo in the Trailer Park Dirt Patch: An Autoethnographic look at “White Trash”, $17,500
  • Robynn L. Hoskins, Department of Archaeology. The Socioeconomics of Fishing Labourers in Saint-Pierre et Miquelon, $17,500
  • Laurel Huget, Department of Political Science. Discourses of Duty and Responsibility: Ethical Frameworks in Navigating Crises of Overdose, Homelessness & COVID-19, $17,500
  • Heidi M.A. Janes, Department of Political Science. The Newfoundland and Labrador Household Food Insecurity-Corporate Grocer Nexus, $17,500
  • Magdalyn A. Knopp, Department of Folklore. The Influence of Irish Fairylore on Conceptualizations of Landscape in Newfoundland and Labrador , $17,500
  • Juliet J. Lanphear, Department of Archaeology. A Microhistorical Analysis of Icelander Kristján Eldjárns role in the Archaeological Saga of L’Anse aux Meadows, $17,500
  • Pier-Ann Milliard, Department of Archaeology. Using archaeoentomology to achieve a palaeoecological reconstruction in Uunartoq Fjord Valley, Southern Greenland, $17,500
  • Madeline Q. Morris, Department of Psychology. Intrusive thoughts of infant harm among pregnant and post-partum women: A systematic review and meta-analysis, $17,500
  • Katarina Nedeljakova, Environmental Policy, Knowledge partnerships in action: a case study of Castle Provincial Park, $17,500
  • Mikaila L. Ortynsky, Faculty of Business Administration. A busted leadership pipeline: Investigating gender bias in lower managerial hiring, $17,500
  • Paige K. Percy, Environmental Policy. Cows in the City: Protest, Policy, and Populism, $17,500
  • Sarah M. Raab, School of Fine Arts. Eating as social practice: how contemporary art can capture the complex human relationship to food, $17,500
  • Shruti Raheja, Department of English. Reimagining Multiculturalism through Coming-of-Age Stories in Carrianne Leung’s That Time I Loved You and Souvankham Thammavongsa’s How to Pronounce Knife, $17,500
  • Erienne E.D. Rennick, School of Fine Arts. Simplicity Through Complexity: Illusions all around us, $17,500
  • Talston Scott, Faculty of Medicine. Commercial surrogacy in Canada: Exploring themes and factors surrounding the rise of cross-border reproductive care and international surrogacy, $17,500
  • Christopher R. Winsor, Department of History. Land, Labour, and Race in Nineteenth-Century British Honduras, $17,500

Total: $367,500

Canada Graduate Scholarships – Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplements

  • Juliet Lanphear, Department of Archaeology. A Microhistorical Analysis of Icelander Kristján Eldjárn’s role in the Archaeological Saga of L’Anse aux Meadows, $5,560

Total: $5,560

CIHR recipients

Canada Graduate Scholarships – Masters Awards

  • Chelsea A. Crossley, Faculty of Medicine. Investigation of the Influence of Pretangle Tau on Cellular Properties in Different Brain Regions involved in Alzheimer’s disease, $17,500
  • Brandon Richardson, Department of Psychology. Cannabidiolic acid methyl ester as preventive treatment in a preclinical model of schizophrenia risk, $17,500
  • Daphne To, Faculty of Medicine. Evaluation of strategies to enhance intervention fidelity of a multi-component intervention to reduce non-indicated imaging for low back pain, $17,500

Total: $52,500

Canada Graduate Scholarships Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplements

  • Lisa Fang, Faculty of Medicine. Identification of neural circuits underlying obesity. $6,000
  • Daphne To, Faculty of Medicine. Evaluation of strategies to enhance intervention fidelity of a multi-component intervention to reduce non-indicated imaging for low back pain, $6,000

Total: $12,000

NSERC recipients

Canada Graduate Scholarships Doctoral Scholarships

  • Nova Hanson, Department of Ocean Sciences. Symbiosis and energetics of a hydrothermal vent snail across extreme environmental gradients, $105,000
  • Michael King, Department of Earth Sciences. Investigating the role of continental blocks and their interplay with the Iberia, Newfoundland and Irish offshore margins using plate tectonic reconstructions $105,000
  • Jordan Wight, Department of Biology, Assessment of fecal contamination and antimicrobial-resistant Escherichia coli in lakes across Canada and the role of wildlife in their dissemination, $105,000

Total: $315,000

Postgraduate Scholarships Doctoral Scholarships

  • Kyle Hall, Department of Physics and Physical Oceanography. Computational Studies of Competing Interactions in Rare-earth Pyrochlores, $63,000
  • Jessika Lamarre, Cognitive and Behavioural Ecology Program. Effects of omega-3 fatty acids on avian cognition, $63,000
  • Isabella Richmond, Department of Biology (Tenure at Concordia University). The role of spatio-temporal processes in urban forest ecosystem service provision, $63,000

Total: $189,000

Canada Graduate Scholarships– Master’s Scholarships

  • Rebecca Bennett, Department of Psychology. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Circadian Function: Can Previous Generations of Traumatic Stress Influence Sleep/Wake Cycles?, $17,500
  • Alexander Burke, Department of Psychology. Optogenetic stimulation of the locus coeruleus: Examining the effects of light stimulation parameters with single cell recording, and a difficult spatial pattern separation task, $17,500
  • Brendan Carswell, Department of Biology. Risky Times and Risky Places: Does Prey Density Provide Safety?, $17,500
  • Dominic Jeyamanoharan, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science. Development of a Megahertz Power Inverter for Wireless Power Transfer Applications, $17,500
  • Caleb Jones, Department of Mathematics & Statistics. NSERC Canada Graduate Scholarship, $17,500
  • Jillian McGroarty, Department of Biology. Investigating the effects of habitat fragmentation and loss with lichen model systems, $17,500
  • Erin Pearson, Department of Geography. Insular Newfoundland as a template for urban forest responses to ongoing climate change throughout Canada, $17,500
  • Ellise Proctor, Department of Geography. Forest management alternatives to prescribed burning in Terra Nova National Park, Newfoundland, $17,500
  • Reid Steele, School of Fisheries. Developing spatially explicit depletion models for the Newfoundland yellowtail flounder (Pleuronectes ferruginea) fishery, $17,500
  • Antoine Vallette Viallard, Environmental Science Program. Identifying dissolved organic matter fingerprints of different phytoplankton size in the Labrador Sea, $17,500
  • Emily Walsh, School of Fisheries. Impact of Cold Water Exposure on Performance and Motor Learning Adaptations, $17,500

Total: $192,500

Information supplied by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and the School of Graduate Studies.


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