Current Trainees



Postdoctoral Fellows

Patidar
  • Microbiology
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Ayush Kumar

Rakesh has completed his Bachelor of Science in Biology from Barkatullah University, Bhopal, India in 2005 and earned Master of Science in Microbiology from the same university in 2007. He worked as a Microbiologist in Quality Control Department of Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics, AKV, Gujarat, India (From 2007 to 2008). Rakesh obtained his PhD in Microbiology from Barkatullah University, Bhopal, India in 2014. He also awarded Senior Research Fellowship and Research Associate ship from Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi, India (from Feb 2013 to Jan 2015). He has worked in diverse research areas, including Microbial Drug Resistance, Oral Microbiology, Molecular Biology and epidemiology. Currently he is working on molecular mechanisms of triclosan-antibiotic cross-resistance in Acinetobacter baumannii as a postdoctoral fellow in Ayush Kumar’s laboratory, Department of Microbiology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB, Canada.

Rakesh is helping with the detection of antibiotic resistance genes in water samples from First Nation communities.



PhD

ARACHCHILAGE
  • Agriculture PhD student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst and Francis Zvomuya

Geethani has planned a career in environmental soil science since she was an undergraduate student in University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka. During her undergraduate and graduate studies, she was able to gather extensive experience in planning, monitoring, conducting, and interpreting various field and laboratory experiments to evaluate the effects of soil nutrients on water quality. A PhD will allow her to explore different perspectives and use sophisticated analytical tools and techniques.

PhD project: Cisterns, which are commonly used to hold drinking water in rural areas and First Nation's communities in Canada, can pose risks to water quality since water sits in the tank for a long time, reacts with the chemicals in the water and with the tank walls, and involves transport processes. However, no comprehensive research has been conducted on cistern water quality as affected by source water quality and water treatment process.

The specific objectives of the proposed research are to:
  1. study and model the seasonal variation of chlorine decay and free chlorine levels in water distribution systems and cisterns over time
  2. characterize natural organic matter and organic and inorganic composition in source and drinking water and to identify their effects on trihalomethane (THM) formation
  3. investigate the impact of free and residual chlorine contents on bacteriological growth in drinking water
  4. determine the potential for THM precursor release from lake sediments
Download of PDF of Presentation: Drinking Water Quality as Affected by Water Treatment, Distribution, and Source Water Quality
  • PhD student, Environmental and Life Sciences
  • Trent University
  • Supervisor: Chris Metcalfe

Mary‐Claire is finishing an MSc degree through Trent University, where she is studying biogeochemical cycling in small tundra lakes and ponds. She will be starting her PhD studies in fall 2014.

’s project will focus on equitable access to potable water in First Nations communities. Through her research, she will aim to identify the root causes of contaminated drinking water in the First Nations community or communities of focus, through the exploration of source contamination issues and waterborne disease ecology affecting drinking water sources. By working in collaboration with communities, she plans for her project to generate sustainable community–based solutions to improve upon clean water access.

Mary-Claire comes from a diverse background in environmental and aquatic sciences. She holds an honours BSc in environmental biology from the University of Guelph, where much of her studies focused on waterborne disease and aquatic ecology as well as environmental chemistry and conservation.

After completing her degree, she worked for the Ministry of Natural Resources as a management biologist in Wawa, Ontario. During that time, Mary-­Claire worked extensively with multiple stakeholders, including community and industrial partners, on forest and water management planning.

serville
  • Environmental and Life Science PhD
  • Trent University
  • Supervisors: Chris Metcalfe

As an undergraduate student at Nipissing University, Ontario, Marsha pursued studies in Environmental Geography.

She then returned to the Caribbean where she completed her MSc. in Natural Resource and Environmental Management at the Centre of Resource Management and Environmental Studies (CERMES) at the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus in Barbados.

For her master’s program, Marsha specialized in Water Resources Management. Her research project was based on a component of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) funded Integrating Watershed and Coastal Area Management (IWCAM) demonstration project in St. Lucia. She focused on correlating water quality in the Fond D’Or watershed, St. Lucia with the health of watershed residents.

Marsha has an interest in water and wastewater issues affecting disadvantaged communities. For her project, she intends to work closely with First Nation communities to protect source waters in order to improve public health and ecosystem health. Her experience with environmental education and capacity building initiatives has made her aware of the importance of community involvement in promoting water safety.

Challis
  • Chemistry PhD student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Mark Hanson and Charles Wong

Passive samplers are widely used for characterization of many inorganic chemicals (e.g., trace metals) and polar organic contaminants (POCs – pharmaceuticals and pesticides) in natural waters. While passive sampling technologies for metals are well established and reliable, passive sampling of POCs is less so. Polar passive sampling techniques are highly sensitive to the hydrologic flow of an aquatic system, making their applicability under changing flow conditions significantly reduced.

Work to modify a current passive sampler design to effectively and consistently uptake POCs across surface waters of varying flow conditions is ongoing in our laboratory, with promising results.

Ultimately, field-validation of these modified polar passive samplers will take place in Norway House Cree Nation. This northern community treats its wastewater passively via sewage lagoons, which are subsequently released into nearby river systems.

Both classic and modified samplers will be used to characterize trace metal and pharmaceutical and pesticide concentrations, respectively, in these impacted river systems. Understanding the occurrence and distribution of POCs and metals in impacted systems is paramount to an effective risk assessment and management program.

GOHARROKHI
  • Soil Science PhD. student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Dr. David Lobb and Dr. Phil Owens

Masoud obtained a B.Sc. and M.Sc in Civil Engineering in Iran, followed by another M.Sc. in Civil Engineering at the University of Manitoba in 2015. He started his PhD. in January, 2016. 

His research project is in the area of geomorphology/sedimentology focusing on the sediment mobilization, transport and deposition on the Nelson River system starting at the north shore of Lake Winnipeg and ending in the estuary in Hudson Bay.

The significance of this work would be to better understand the relationships between sediments and water flow and water quality in this hydrologic system. 

Goss
  • Civil engineering PhD Student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Beata Gorczyca

Charles graduated from the University of Winnipeg in 2009 with a BSc in chemistry with interests in both the analytical and environmental chemistry fields. In 2012, he received an M.Sc. in civil and environmental engineering from the University of Manitoba.

He is currently focusing on developing a rapid method for monitoring the composition of natural organic matter (NOM) in surface waters. His work includes NOM fractionation method development and the trihalomethane formation potential of isolated NOM fractions. His aim is to provide a method for water treatment facilities to identify the presence of problematic NOM fractions related to trihalomethane formation as well as to improve NOM removal through optimization of treatment processes.

hill
  • Natural Resources Institute PhD
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst & Shirley Thompson

The title for Stewart’s proposed dissertation research is “Nipi Onaschikewin (Water Planning): Developing source water protection plans for the communities of Bunibonibee Cree Nation at Oxford Lake, and God’s Lake First Nation and Manto Sipi Cree Nation at God’s Lake located in Manitoba, Canada based upon science and Cree traditional knowledge.” Stewart achieved a milestone in his studies by passing his Candidacy/Comprehensive Exam on July 17, 2015 to become a PhD Candidate. Stewart is an Ininiw (Cree) from God's Lake First Nation undertaking his PhD studies at the Natural Resources Institute of the University of Manitoba made possible by the mandate of the CREATE H2O program beginning in September 2013. His proposed research, as indicated in the title, is to develop source water protection plans for his community of God’s Lake First Nation and their sister communities of Bunibonibee Cree Nation and Manto Sipi Cree Nation. Stewart grew up in God's Lake and speaks his language fluently. Stewart earned his Master of Natural Resources Management degree from the Natural Resources Institute in 1993 and also holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Brandon University with a major in Environmental Science and a minor in Botany. Upon completing his Master's degree in 1993, Stewart spent 20 years working in the service of First Nations in the areas of natural resources research, environmental management, treaty land entitlement, community self-government consultations, Swampy Cree cultural and historical research, environmental assessments, First Nations engagement in the resource development sector, and traditional area land use planning. He has a deep appreciation and understanding for the value of applying the Traditional Knowledge of First Nation’s people to modern environmental and natural resources management regimes.

Stewart's article in the Winter 2014 edition of ResearchLife

Baijius
  • PhD Student, Department of Geography and Planning
  • University of Saskatchewan
  • Supervisor: Robert Patrick

I have a BA in Geography from Vancouver Island University, and recently completed my MA in Geography and Planning at the University of Saskatchewan. The focus of my MA thesis was the interaction between different types of knowledge, and the role they play in a watershed planning process. Going forward, I am looking to identify opportunities to integrate indigenous perspectives into existing planning practices by working with First Nations communities involved in watershed management.

Goss
  • PhD student in Soil Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Francis Zvomuya and Annemieke Farenhorst

I earned a Bachelor of Agriculture (Soil Science) from Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria and recently completed my Masters of Science (Soil Science) at the University of Manitoba. I am currently enrolled in a PhD program at the University of Manitoba and my research is focused on examining the role of plants in the attenuation of antibiotics in municipal biosolids.

Khan
  • Soil Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst & Tricia Stadnyk

Fahad S. Khan completed B.Sc. in Agricultural Engineering from University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan in 2009. Then, he achieved M.Sc. degree in Agriculture from Dalhousie University, Canada in 2012. His expertise or specialties are in the area of Precision agriculture, GPS/GIS, Electromagnetic induction, DualEM sensor, Water table depth, Fruit losses, Soil properties and Plant parameters. He started Ph.D. in Soil Science from University of Manitoba, Canada in September, 2015 and he is working on impact of biochars on the aged-sorption and transport of emerging contaminants (Antibiotics and Estrogens) from soil to water. Biochars are carbon-rich porous materials and typically have a strong sorption ability for these contaminants. Therefore, application of biochar may provide an alternative management option for reducing the transport of emerging contaminants from land to water.

Fatema
  • Soil Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst

Marufa is a PhD student in Soil Science working with Dr. Annemieke Farenhorst. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture in 2009 from Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Agricultural University (BSMRAU), Bangladesh and went on to complete a Master of Science in Entomology. Her masters work is on the use pattern of insecticide residue on eggplants. Marufa also earned masters in Agricultural Science and Resource Management in Tropics and Subtropics at the University of Bonn in Germany where she studied the special distribution and temporal variation of rice yields in Bangladesh. Marufa gained work experience at the University of Bonn researching nutrients acquisition from subsoil focusing on the role of individual biopores.

islam
  • Economics Phd
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Melanie O’Gorman

Mr. Khan Jahirul Islam is a PhD candidate in the department of Economics at University of Manitoba. Khan has completed his Master of Arts in Economics from Carleton University, Ottawa. His fields of research are applied microeconomics and econometrics

Khan is doing his PhD thesis on microfinance in the developing and underdeveloped countries and on payday lending in Canada. His research includes both theoretical and empirical studies. Primary focus of his research is to analyze the socioeconomic conditions of the poor and deprived people both in the developed and underdeveloped countries.

In addition to his PhD thesis, Khan is also very interested and involved in studying the socioeconomic conditions of First Nations communities in Canada. Khan is working as a contract instructor in the Department of Economics both in the University of Manitoba and University of Winnipeg.


Masters

oyegunle
  • Masters of Arts student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Peter Kulchyski and Aimée Craft

Janice is doing research in the traditional homelands of the Pimicikamak people, identifying place names and Cree oral histories in regards to relationships the Ininew had with water and land prior to hydro development.

Janice Bone is an Ininew (Cree) from Pimicikamak Cree Nation (Cross Lake); growing up in Pimicikamak is why she is a Cree language speaker today. Janice completed her BA in 2003 with a major in Native Studies and a minor in criminology.

She then went on to complete her Bachelor of Nursing in 2007. Janice worked for seven years in nursing, often in remote communities such as Pimicikamak, St. Theresa Point, God¹s Lake, Berens River and Nunavut. Janice felt that more holistic culture-based research needed to be done in the Cree language in order to improve the health of First Nations in the North, so decided to pursue an MA in Native Studies.

  • Master Student, Department of Health Sciences
  • University of Saskatchewan
  • Supervisor: Dr. Lalita Bharadwaj and Dr. Brenda Elias

Growing up in Thunder Bay and Sioux Lookout, Ontario, Diane Adams always felt a deep connection to water. Today, she's translated her meaningful relationship water into a passion for water-related research. Diane is currently a student in the Masters in Public Health program at the University of Saskatchewan School of Public Health. Working under award-winning community-based water researcher Dr. Lalita Bhardwaj, Diane will explore how Indigenous communities define safe and secure water supplies and characterize water safety risks. Diane holds a Bachelor of Applied Science in Environmental Health Science from the First Nations University of Canada (University of Regina). She recently completed a practicum in Environmental Health Inspection with the Saskatoon Tribal Council, and will certify as a Public Health Inspector/Environmental Health officer in November 2016.

  • Master Student, Department of Soil Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Dr. Annemieke Farenhorst and Dr. David Lobb

Kristy Anderson grew up in Northwestern Ontario in a small community. Her time spent outdoors has taught her how important the water and land is not only as a resource, but also as a way of life and learning. Kristy graduated in the fall of 2016 with a Bachelor’s of Environmental Science from the University of Manitoba. Her summers were spent working at a fishing camp and then later as a wildland firefighter. She then went on to work for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources as a Resource Management Technician where she conducted fieldwork for several projects. Now she plans to be working with a First Nations community to address a problem they have identified with their underground cisterns. She will test the source water and drinking water as well as collaborate with other researchers and the community to test ways to clean drinking water at a household level.

Herman
  • Master of Science student
  • Trent University
  • Supervisors: Chris Metcalfe and Chris Furgal

Rick will assist the M'chigeeng First Nation of West Bay, Manitoulin Island, with a water source protection plan. He will look at microbial water pathogen drivers that are point source (such as wastewater lagoon discharge) and non-point discharges (industry, agriculture and wildlife, including deer) compared to raw water intake microbial counts.

Rick holds a BSc honours microbiology co-op degree from the University of Guelph and an Environmental Monitoring and Impact Assessment post-graduate certificate from Cambrian College. His research interests are watershed assessment, including water quality, flows, benthic invertebrates and documenting phytoplankton/chlorophyll levels.

He will also deploy passive samplers to detect artificial sweetener, a tracer for wastewater discharge that can be detected up to 300 kilometres away from a source. The wastewater plume will be characterized under lake stratified conditions at the end of July to assess if wastewater is found above and below the thermocline. The discharge and drinking water intakes are both at 10 metres, where the thermocline is anticipated.

Future recommendations could be to place the discharge at 5 metres and drinking water intakes at 15 metres to exploit longer global-warming-induced thermoclines that would naturally separate wastewater into the epilimnion and drinking water intake from the hypolimnion.

Download a PDF of his presentation to his committee meeting

Download a PDF of one of his presentations on Sources of Drinking Water Contamination for the M'Chigeeng First Nation in West Bay, Manitoulin Island.

Herbert
  • Master of Environment and Geography
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Drs. Barber and McCullough

Claire earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Manitoba. She has worked for the past 19 years as a biologist and ecologist on freshwater lakes in Canada and overseas. In 2013 she began working for the Centre for Earth Observation Science at the University of Manitoba as the Coordinator for the Canadian Watershed Information Network (formerly the Lake Winnipeg Basin Information Network). The goal of her master’s project is to use remote sensing and in-situ data to study the relationship among nutrients, algae and algal toxins in Lakes Manitoba, Winnipegosis and Waterhen. These methods can be used for early detection of algal blooms and identify potential sites where algal toxins may occur. These toxins decrease the quality of drinking water of first nations if they are taken directly by an individual or processed by water treatment plants. They are not removed by filtration or boiling. Blooms that may occur near First Nations camps where drinking water is taken directly from the water is also a concern as these blooms can lead to health problems in the short and long term.

Claire will also work with First Nations Communities on a community based monitoring project to enable them to monitor FN community priority areas. The project will train FN members on water quality sampling and sample preparation techniques that can readily be adapted to sampling for potable water quality.

Herman
  • Master of Science in Engineering student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Qiuyan Yuan

Md. Mofizul Islam completed bachelor degree from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) and has gained four years professional and industrial working experience with three different national and multinational companies n Chevron, Petromax Refinery and Dae Dong Chemical Industries Ltd.

His research is focusing on municipal wastewater treatment systems in first nation communities. His research will lead to the development of better wastewater treatment in first nation communities that is more cost-effective and energy efficient.

Goss
  • Civil engineering Master of Science student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Nazim Cicek and Qiuyan Yuan

Vanja is a mother, wife and student. Her background is in quality control and quality assurance of different products and materials, in researching and monitoring of environmental aspects and impacts, in implementing systems management, and in working with the food and agriculture industries. She holds a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering and technology and a master's degree in environmental engineering from Croatia.

Working in collaboration with communities, Vanja is planning to research passive wastewater systems as a cost-effective and energy-efficient alternative to achieve government-proposed requirements for effluent discharge levels and minimize the effects of nutrients on receiving streams, rivers and lakes.

She is planning to assess the environmental impact of lagoon effluents through natural wetlands to receiving waters. This data will help with future planning for upgrading wastewater treatment in First Nations communities. It will provide best management practices around lagoon discharge strategies, which can be used by community wastewater managers to make best use of their wetland systems.

The proposed project is to evaluate treatment efficacy of passive wastewater management systems (lagoons + wetlands) and to evaluate environmental risk of lagoon effluent waters discharging through the wetlands to a receiving body of water in a First Nations community under cold-climate conditions.

pritty
  • Interdisciplinary Master of Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Brenda Elias and Annemieke Farenhorst

As an undergraduate student, Pepper worked with Tootinaowaziibeeng Anishinabe First Nation investigating microbial contaminants in the water on their homelands.

The health status of First Nations people has reached critical levels of concern, mostly due to the high rates of type 2 diabetes. One widely accepted strategy to mitigate this disease has been for First Nations people to revert back to their traditional diet obtained through hunting and gathering. However, there is increasing concern among members of First Nation communities that the fish and animals they hunt may not be suitable for human consumption.

Manitoba First Nations communities are concerned with drinking water access and sanitation issues related to human health, but also to the health of fish and game. An investigation of the ecosystem, particularly water sources, is needed to determine if there are contaminants present that will have potential negative health consequences for humans and wildlife.

Sabri
  • Master of Science. of Engineering Student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Nazim Cicek and Qiuyan Yuan

Mahrooz earned her BSc in civil engineering at the University of Tehran, Iran. She has worked as a consulting engineer for more than eight years. Her interest in environmental issues led her to continue her education at the University of Manitoba in this area.

Research project: to find a sustainable solution for sludge management in northern communities with consideration of cold climate conditions. The freeze-thaw method will be used as a sludge pre-treatment technique in order to examine the enhancement of sludge biogas production. The amount of nutrient recovered from the water will also be measured after the freeze-thaw process.

Weissflog
  • Master of Science student
  • Trent University
  • Supervisors: Eric Sager and Tom Whillans

Nicholas Weissflog is a student intent upon understanding the processes by which human beings can restore the societies and the ecosystems which they inhabit. In 2014 he completed an Honours Bachelors of science in Ecological Restoration, a program run by both Fleming College and Trent University.

He is currently setting up a research project whose purpose is to inform the restoration of Manoomin or wild rice (Zizania Palustris) in the Kawartha Lakes. This project is multifaceted, it shall include a genetics survey of wild rice populations across Central Ontario in order to document genetic and morphological differences which are indicated by the ecological differences identified by traditional knowledge holders.

These surveys shall be coupled with greenhouse experiments testing the seed stock of each of the populations sampled for differences in phenotypic expression under controlled conditions.

Goss
  • Master of Soil Science student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: David Lobb and Annemieke Farenhorst

Johanna is a recent graduate of the University of Manitoba with a Bachelor of Environmental Science degree. She has focused her studies on water resources and was also part of the co-operative education program.

Johanna has accomplished many projects in environmental management as part of her university course work. “Sustainable Water Management: Engineered wetlands” was a group project and oral presentation, in which her team consulted with Ducks Unlimited and Native Plant Solutions on the functioning, success, economic implications and future applications of engineered wetlands in urban environments as a tool for protecting water quality. She has also produced a short video on the implications of using aquatic pesticides to control aquatic invasive species, such as zebra mussels and sea lamprey in the Laurentian Great Lakes.

Johanna has gained extensive laboratory experience with analysis of water quality and sediment parameters through university laboratory work, as well as through co-op work placements. In her coursework in ecotoxicology, she has performed a variety of bioassays looking at the effects of chemicals on many organisms and has a deep understanding of the requirements for performing a statistically sound bioassay, which can be used for risk assessment.

Through her co-op work placements, she has also gained extensive field work experience with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, where they continue to do research and monitoring for the environmental impacts of freshwater aquaculture on the benthic invertebrate community.

MES project: Johanna’s graduate work will involve developing water quality monitoring programs for long-term evaluation of point- and non-point source pollution impacting First Nations communities.

Download a PDF of her presentation on the effects of the Two Mile Channel on Sedimentation and Contamination in Norway House Cree Nation Waters?

gamhewage
  • Master of Soil Science student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst and Claudia Sheedy

Mauli is from Sri Lanka and holds a BSc in Agricultural Sciences and Management from Sabargamuwa University. She plans to work with a Cree community in Manitoba on pesticide contaminants in groundwater.

grima
  • Master of Environment student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Stephane McLachlan

Victoria earned a Bachelor of Engineering and Architecture (Honours) degree from the University of Malta before working as a planning officer and then environmental protection officer with the Malta Environment and Planning Authority.

In 2012, she completed the advanced post-graduate diploma for Geographic Information Systems Technology offered by Red River College. Victoria is enrolled in the Master of Environment program at the University of Manitoba. The goal of her masters' project is to better understand the implications of hydropower on the province's northern environment and Indigenous communities.

Spatial information technologies will be used to describe the spatiotemporal impacts on waterways and shorelines as they relate to hydropower, quantify relationships between traditional land-use practices and environmental change, and document physical changes on the landscape. Elders and harvesters will be interviewed to have a better understanding of how and to what degree the changes are affecting traditional land-uses practices.

This project will be carried out in close collaboration with northern Indigenous communities that are active members of the Wa Ni Ska Tan Hydro Research Alliance (www.hydroalliance.ca).

jimenez
  • Master’s in Indigenous Development Practice student
  • University of Winnipeg
  • Supervisor: Melanie O’Gorman and Annemieke Farenhorst

Gabriela is a chemical engineer from Caracas, Venezuela. She has a strong sense of teamwork and experience in engineering projects, laboratory work, research, co-ordination and supervision of organizational logistics and simulation with engineering software.

Besides her native language Spanish, she is fluent in English and Portuguese and has visited several developing countries in the Western Hemisphere. She was also an exchange student at the University of New Mexico and took specialized courses on water resources management.

While working on projects related to water treatment, gas, and oil refineries, Gabriela has experienced the importance of considering all facets of a project: environment, health, finances and community development. She chose Indigenous Development because growing up in Venezuela has given her awareness of the social and economic exclusion Indigenous communities endure.

Gabriela is working with the Public Interest Law Centre and Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak on tallying the capital, operating/maintenance and retrofitting funding gaps for First Nation water and wastewater treatment.

hayward
  • Master of Science in Environmental and Life Sciences student
  • Trent University
  • Supervisor: Dr. Chris Metcalfe and TBD

Shé:kon Sewakwekon Erin Elizabeth Hayward yónkyats. Aterón:to nitewaké:non, Ohsweken nitewakahtóntyeu tahnon Peterborough tkenákere. Kenien’kehá:ka nì:’i tahnon kaniáhten niwaki’tarò:ten.

Erin Hayward is a Mohawk woman, turtle clan, born and raised in Scarborough Ontario, traditionally from Six Nations of the Grand River Territory. She has been involved in the Urban Indigenous community since the age of 15; is a ceremonial helper, hand drummer, and traditional medicine gardener. Erin is currently the Youth Director for the Peterborough Nogojiwanong Friendship Centre Board of Directors.

Erin graduated from Fleming College with a certificate as a Cartographic specialist and from Trent University with a B.Sc (Hons.) in Biology and Geography with an Emphasis in Geographic Information Systems. She has worked as a G.I.S technician and lab assistant within the Limnology laboratory at Trent University and compiled the largest global dataset for riverine ecology 14C analysis to date, titled: Relationships between Anthropogenic Mobilization of Fossilized Carbon with Surface Runoff, Groundwater Runoff, Groundwater Recharge and Precipitation.

Erin is completing an M.Sc degree in Environmental and Life Sciences through Trent University. She hopes to use her previous experience to track waste water contaminants and assess the environmental impact from sewage lagoons in First Nations communities.

MI
  • Bachelor of Environmental Science student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst and Francis Zvomuya

Ruidong is interested in water quality protection and water movement in the environment. He is assisting PhD student Geethani Eragoda Arachchilage in lake water sampling and laboratory analysis, especially focusing on chlorine-related contamination.

hayward
  • Master of Science of Engineering Student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Dr. Qiuyan Yuan

Qian obtained a bachelor degree in bioengineering from Huaqiao University, which is located in Xiamen, one of the most beautiful cities in China. His interest in water research was stimulated in 2012 when he started to conduct the research of drinking water safety in Chinese Academy of Sciences. It is also the interest that led Qian to further his graduate study in University of Manitoba and decided to commit himself to water research in CREATE H2O program.

The goal of his study is to design and test a cost-effective and household UV disinfection system to treat drinking water in first nation communities.


Undergraduate

Lee
  • Bachelor of Science Student in Biology
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Dr. Annemieke Farenhorst

Lettie is a first year science student at the University of Manitoba. She is working towards her B.Sc. Bachelor of Science General Degree. She is very interested in genetics and biology. She plans to attend medical school in a couple of years. Lettie is looking forward to working with Annemieke Farenhorst over the summer of 2017.

Litke
  • Civil Engineering
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Healther MacKenzie, Neegan Burnside

Matt is an undergraduate student working towards his Bachelor of Science (Civil Engineering). He has completed a four-month term working for industry partner Neegan Burnside Ltd., in combination with Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), surveying and assessing infrastructure conditions in various First Nations communities throughout Manitoba. He is working to complete his degree under the Environmental Engineering Option with a focus on Water Resources. Matt looks forward to applying innovative engineering solutions to the water-related needs faced by Manitobans and Canadians. His technical studies will focus on issues related to water quality and management systems and he will seek to apply these skills in industry.

Strapazzon
  • Bachelor of Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Annemieke Farenhorst

Jasmine is a fourth year BSc student. She is aiming to pursue a masters degree in physiotherapy starting next fall.

 

She will be assisting graduate students this summer with water and sediment sampling and analysis. She will also be working on a project determining the effects of antibiotics in soil on microbial functions such as respiration and estrogen degradation.

Murdock
  • Bachelor of Science student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst

Anita Murdock is an Indigenous student at the University of Manitoba pursuing her Bachelor of Science. She is from Long Plain First Nation and also has roots in Fisher River Cree Nation. Currently she is working with the CREATE H20 program as a summer student in the Department of Soil Science. Her work includes assisting graduate students in their lab and field research, attending conferences related to CREATE H2O, such as the Annual Water Conference 2016, and also doing collaborative soil research testing for hormones present in Manitoban soil. She is excited to bring together her education and apply it to all the opportunities CREATE H2O provides.

Ducharme
  • Bachelor of Nursing
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Annemieke Farenhorst, Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak (MKO) and First Nations Health and Social Secretariat of Manitoba (FNHSSM)

Shaylee Ducharme is a third year nursing student at the University of Manitoba from Ebb and Flow First Nation. She has a background in science and is interested in helping First Nations communities regarding water protection. Shaylee is an undergraduate student for the Create H2O program for the summer 2016. She is working on projects with Create H2O partners including Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak (MKO) and First Nations Health and Social Secretariat of Manitoba (FNHSSM).

Strapazzon
  • Environmental Studies
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Ken Sandilands

My name is Stefano Strapazzon and I was born in Flin Flon, Manitoba. Being born and raised in the heart of northern Manitoba, I grew up with a deep passion and appreciation for the outdoors. That passion guided me to my current enrolment at the University of Manitoba. I am a member of the Clayton H. Riddell Faculty, currently studying Environmental Studies with a focus area in wildlife management. My goal in the future is to find a way to properly manage wildlife while supporting and understanding the need for proper resource use and management. During my time in University, many of my classes have focused on environmental studies and biology.

Much of the work I have done in the past revolves around water quality and aquatic species. I have spent 3 summers working for Hudbay (primarily a copper and zinc mine) in Flin Flon as both a exploration trainee and environmental trainee. I was in charge of the majority of water quality surveys done onsite and within the surrounding communities. I also had the opportunity to do a wide variety of environmental work such as: soil quality surveys and sampling, vegetative sampling, air quality surveys, environmental inspections, remote sampling, remote sensing installation, waterbody surveys, and much more.

I have also had the opportunity to work with the Conservation and Water Stewardship in the Fisheries division over an 8 month period. Working for the province was a wonderful experience as I was given a great amount of responsibility and was able to work in a new setting. The first portion of my work was done at the University of Manitoba at the Freshwater Institute. Another student and I were tasked with identifying all the fish species that came from the Namao, a research vessel on Lake Winnipeg. Another portion of my position was working with aquatic invasive species. I surveyed zebra mussel samplers in order to track the progress and growth rates on zebra mussels in Lake Winnipeg. I was also able to present aquatic invasive species information to the public. My work with the province was extremely inspiring and gave me a true appreciation for how science and policy come together. 

Hourie
  • J.D. Law
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Aimee Craft

Rayanna Seymour (Hourie) is an Anishinaabekwe from Naongashiing (Big Island) in Treaty #3 Territory (Lake of the Woods) and is from the bear clan. She is in her second year of law school at Robson Hall, U of M and is interested in learning more of Anishinaabe Law. She works part-time for Aimee Craft on the Anishinaabe nibi Inaakonegewin (Anishinaabe Water laws) project. She enjoys dancing both contemporary (zumba) and traditional (pow-wow: Jingle Dress & fancy shawl), spending time with family, especially her nieces and nephews, and travelling.

Parrott
  • Bachelor of Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Annemieke Farenhorst

Ashlyn Parrott is a third year student at the University of Manitoba. She is currently working towards a major in genetics. Ashlyn is a Metis student and is a member of the Anola Manitoba Metis Federation Local. She will be working with Dr. Annemieke Farenhorst in the Soil Science Department during the summer of 2016.

Ashlyn aspires to have a career in research and is looking forward to the experiences that the CREATE H2O program will offer her.

Bachand
  • JD Law student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Aimee Craft and Karen Busby

Brendan grew up in Yellowknife, NWT. Brendan attended Dalhousie University where he earned his BA in International Development Studies and History. Brendan has worked in policy and legislation in the governmental sector, working with both territorial and aboriginal governments in the NWT. He worked on the devolution of lands and resources transfer agreement and implementation project, which involved the federal, territorial, and aboriginal governments from 2012-2014. He advised on issues ranging from environmental agreements to formula financing agreements, to employee transfer agreements. Brendan is entering his final year of his law degree and hopes to work on aboriginal self-government law and policy upon completion.

Sabri
  • Bachelor of Environmental Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Annemieke Farenhorst

Hannah Polaczek is working towards a Bachelor of Environmental Science (Major, Co-op) at the University of Manitoba.

Hannah is a hard-working, enthusiastic, and motivated young woman who is currently exploring a variety of educational interests including environmental health, soil and water science, and toxicology. She hopes to one day complete an honours undergraduate thesis, earn a masters degree, and perhaps consider a career in research.

This summer, Hannah will work with six of Dr. Farenhorst's graduate students, assisting them with their masters or post doctoral research. In turn, they will guide her and her fellow undergraduate colleges, Ashlyn, Anita, and Jasmine in conducting their own research on the "Effects of Antibiotics on Microbial Community and Diversity".

Through this work, Hannah hopes to gain a wealth of experience in a laboratory setting and out in the field. She also looks forward to learning more about the water quality issues (and their associated health concerns) many First Nations communities face. Needless-to-say, she is absolutely thrilled to be a part of the CREATE H2O program!

Sabri
  • Bachelor of Arts (psychology)
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Katherine Starzyk

Aleah Fontaine is a fourth year undergraduate honours student in psychology with a minor in Native studies. She is a member of Sagkeeng First Nation. Aleah is very interested in the social justice aspect of psychology and is excited to complete her undergraduate honours thesis. She is passionate about issues faced by Aboriginal peoples in Canada. After graduating with her BA, she intends on applying for graduate school in psychology.

Michaleski
  • Bachelor of Environment
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Michael Paterson

Sonya Michaleski is in her second year of her undergraduate degree in environmental science, with interests in water, soil sciences, ecosystems and ecology. She wishes to pursue further studies with an honours undergraduate thesis and eventually earn a masters degree. She is currently looking forward to her summer position at the International Institute for Sustainable Development - Experimental Lakes Area.

Gilchrist
  • BSc. student (honours) Student
  • Trent University
  • Supervisors: Chris Metcalfe and Dirk Wallschlaeger

Dan Gilchrist is a Métis student approaching the last year of his degree with a specific interest in aquatic toxicology and water quality issues. For his thesis project, he hopes to look at lead and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in Owen Sound harbour sediments and the risk of re-suspension of these contaminants. Dan hopes to be accepted as a summer intern at the Experimental Lakes Area and to pursue his master's in trace contaminant toxicology and chemistry at Trent after his undergraduate degree is finished.

Ivey
  • Aboriginal and Northern Studies (Co-op)
  • University College of the North
  • Supervisors: Selvin Peter

Tansi, my name is Christina Ivey. I live in The Pas Manitoba and am originally from Pukatawagan Manitoba (M.C.C.N). I am 47 years old. I am currently working with Professor Selvin Peter doing research on water safety and security for First Nations, which is part of the CREATE H2O project. I am learning a lot while doing this project. I will be returning this fall to UCN, The Pas for my 4th year in Aboriginal and Northern studies. I enjoy taking Science courses as part of my program. After I receive my degree, I would like to continue to learn new, practical and innovative things to help out the young and old who need guidance and support respectively. My favorite past time is being outdoors with Mother Nature with my family, friends and grandchildren. I cherish these moments as this enables me to see the beauty of the land, water and animals.

McAdam
  • Bachelor of Science Student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Ayush Kumar

Alexa McAdam is working towards her degree in science, with a focus on genetics. She is interested in understanding disease on a molecular level and antibiotic resistance. She will be assisting Dr. Kumar in summer 2015 assessing water quality from a microbiological perspective.

mcgovarin
  • Bachelor of Science (Indigenous Environmental Studies)
  • Trent University
  • Supervisors: Chris Metcalfe and Tom Whillans

Stephen is passionate about sustainable methods for improving drinking water quality in First Nation communities. He will work on wastewater contamination and its impact on First Nation communities in Ontario.

Morriseau
  • Bachelor of Science Student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Ayush Kumar

Taylor is a proud member of Peguis First Nation and a third-year BSc student.

She is completing her double honours in microbiology and genetics, with intentions to pursue graduate studies in the field of medical microbiology.

Taylor is passionate about discovering the intertwining host-pathogen relationship and the underlying mechanisms of human infection. Taylor completed her work-term under the supervision of Dr. Ayush Kumar in the fall of 2015 to detect antibiotic-resistant genes in water samples taken from a Manitoban First Nation Community. She would like to focus on specific mechanisms of antibiotic resistance as she pursues graduate studies in the next year.

Seward
  • Bachelor of Science (Agroecology)
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Annemieke Farenhorst

Jeff Seward is finishing his 3rd year of undergraduate studies in the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences. He is working toward a major in agroecology and a minor in soil science.

He is fascinated by the complexity of ecosystems in agricultural settings and natural environments, and how these systems interact. It is his goal to understand how human endeavours can function efficiently without interrupting the integrity of a healthy ecosystem.

Jeff is looking forward to assisting master's student Johanna Theroux in her graduate work regarding the effects of the Two Mile Channel on sedimentation and contamination in Norway House Cree Nation waters.

Morriseau
  • Faculty of Law
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Aimée Craft and Karen Busby

Jared is a Métis father of two and a full-time law student at Robson Hall, University of Manitoba. He has a BA from the University of Winnipeg with a double major in conflict resolution and international development studies. Jared previously worked as a manager with the Manitoba Lotteries Corporation for 13 years.

In summer 2014, he worked as a research assistant with law professor Karen Busby on a project regarding Section 36 of the Canadian Constitution (Aboriginal and treaty rights) and how it may pertain to Aboriginal water rights, and with Aimée Craft on a project about Anishinaabe nibi inaakonigewinn – exploring Anishinaabe water law through gatherings with Elders.

Roberts
  • J.D. Law
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Karen Busby & Aimée Craft

Faye is also researching the justiciability of section 36 of the Constitution Act and its significance as part of a litigation strategy for First Nations seeking provision of clean water. She has an honour's degree in politics from the University of Winnipeg, where she wrote an undergraduate thesis examining the relationship between the Charter of Rights and federalism. She has since worked for an environmental not-for-profit agency and is particularly interested in the intersection of human rights and environmental rights.

Rahimi
  • J.D. Law
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Karen Busby & Aimée Craft

Kobra Rahimi is a JD student in the Faculty of Law with a BA in Criminal Justice from the University of Winnipeg. In summer 2015, she is working as a research assistant at Jerch Law under the supervision of law Prof. Karen Busby. Her research involves analysis of Aboriginal perceptions of water, water rights and an understanding of regulations and legislation aimed at protecting safe drinking water in First Nation communities. Kobra will also assist Prof. Busby on research on family and community pressures placed on young Muslim women in Winnipeg when making important life decisions.

Previous Trainees


Postdoctoral Fellows

McAdam
  • Post Doc
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst and Ayush Kumar

Ru Li earned BSc and Master of Science degrees at Yunnan University in China with a major in chemistry and microbiology. Ru also earned a PhD degree in plant science here at the University of Manitoba, studying how different cropping system influence soil bacterial communities.

Research project: Ru developed DNA techniques for analysis of microbes in water that students involved in the H2O program could apply to their research projects with First Nations.

Tun
  • Animal Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Ehsan Khafipour

After graduating from veterinary school in Myanmar with a gold medal, Hein worked as a clinical veterinarian and livestock specialist in an international non-governmental organization before he earned an MSc degree at Chulalongkorn University in Thailand specializing in veterinary public health. He also earned a PhD degree from the University of Hong Kong. Hein has worked in diverse research areas, including molecular epidemiological studies of infectious viruses, the animal gut microbiome, environmental microbiology and microbial genomics and metagenomics. He is pursuing postdoctoral research at the Gut Microbiome Lab of the University of Manitoba. His current research projects include environmental microbial surveys.

Hein will assist other H2O trainees by analyzing DNA and RNA from bacteria in First Nation water samples.

Jahan
  • Department of Soil Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisor: Annemieke Farenhorst

Musaratt finished her Ph. D in Food Science (Food Microbiology and Food Safety) in 2015 at the University of Manitoba. Her thesis is titled: Virulence characteristics of enterococci from cured meat and potential for inter-genetic transfer of antibiotic resistance determinants. Her post-doctoral research is working with First Nations drinking water, more specifically studying water born pathogen source tracking using Next Generation Sequencing by Illumina sequencer.


Graduate

oyegunle
  • Master of Natural Resources Management student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Shirley Thompson and Francis Zvomuya

Research project: Waste disposal in northern Manitoba First Nations communities of the Island Lake region. Ahmed will analyze the potential environmental and health impacts of leachate on water quality.

Ahmed has a Bachelor of Environmental Management and Toxicology degree from the Federal University of Agriculture, Nigeria. His research interests are primarily in the area of solid waste management and wastewater treatment.

mudiyansel
  • Soil Science PhD
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst

Inoka obtained a Bachelor of Science and Masters of Science in Sri Lanka, followed by another Masters of Science in soil science at the University of Manitoba. She is finishing her PhD on the effects of manure handling and land application practices on the environmental fate of antimicrobials.

Inoka will use her expertise on antibiotics to assist other H2O trainees with their research projects.


Undergraduate

lobson
  • Bachelor of Science graduate
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Mark Hanson and Charles Wong

Chelsea is a recent biological sciences graduate from the University of Manitoba. For her undergraduate research, she studied the effects of the insecticide thiamethoxam on zooplankton in wetland mesocosms. In summer 2014, Chelsea assisted PhD student Jonathan Challis, whose research on passive sampling techniques takes place in Norway House Cree Nation.

Martin
  • Bachelor of Arts Student
  • University College of the North
  • Supervisor: Selvin Peter

Harvey Martin is finishing a three-year degree in Aboriginal and Northern Studies at University College of the North. In summer 2015, he is studying water in Mosakahiken (Moose Lake)..

Moosetail
  • Bachelor of Arts student
  • University College of the North
  • Supervisors: Selvin Peter and Shirley Thompson

Cheryl was a 2014 summer student research assistant with Dr. Selvin Peter, University College of the North, and Dr. Shirley Thompson, University of Manitoba. She is passionate about First Nations drinking water and sanitation on reserves and re-establishing a better way to resolve the ongoing issues First Nations encounter every day. Manitoba First Nations communities are concerned with drinking water access and sanitation issues related to human health, but also to the health of fish and game.

Research project: Assisting Pine Creek First Nation improve water quality to help make her community a better, healthier place to live. An investigation of the ecosystem, particularly the water sources, is needed to determine if there are contaminants present that will have potential negative health consequences for humans and wildlife.

Weldon
  • Bachelor of Health Sciences student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: David Lobb and Annemieke Farenhorst

Arthur's degree program focused on health disparities between different populations at the community, national, and international level through the lens of the population health model. This degree also included a broad range of science and social science courses.

Arthur is starting the Master of Occupational Therapy program this year at the U of M, but is also interested in the development of bio-control for improving environmental and human health.

In summer 2015, Arthur will assist graduate student Johanna Theroux with collecting water and sediment samples, and will also help administer dietary surveys to community members in Norway House Cree Nation. He will help in the lab with analysis of water samples for different parameters related to the quality of drinking water sources.

Mai
  • Bachelor of Science (Co-op)
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst and Ayush Kumar

Monica is working towards Bachelor of Science, Major in Biological Sciences (Co-op). She is interested all aspects of biological science from understanding cell, molecular and developmental biology to studying animal behaviour and principles of ecology in their application to improving community well-being.

She will be assisting Dr. Annemieke Farenhorst in the summer 2015 assessing water quality from a microbiological perspective addressing the harmful effects of chemicals, bacteria and other contaminates in drinking water. In addition to her research projects, Monica will be involved in community and youth outreach, and working to disseminating information and research results to First Nation communities.

Through this project, Monica hopes to gain knowledge about the ways to improve the water quality in order to address long standing health concerns that many First Nations communities face on a regular basis.

Monkman
  • Bachelor of Engineering student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Nazim Cicek and Annemieke Farenhorst

Elizabeth Harries is finishing her undergraduate degree in biosystems engineering with a focus on the environment. Her aim is to work towards creating and maintaining clean and thriving environments. She believes in systems approaches where interdisciplinary knowledge, understanding, and collaboration are needed.

Her contribution to the CREATE H2O program is assisting in water sampling in Lake Winnipeg for sediments, as well as assisting in other arms of the project where she is needed. Elizabeth will be assisting masters' student Johanna Theroux this summer working with Norway House Cree Nation.

MI
  • Bachelor of Environmental Science student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst and Francis Zvomuya

Ruidong is interested in water quality protection and water movement in the environment. He is assisting PhD student Geethani Eragoda Arachchilage in lake water sampling and laboratory analysis, especially focusing on chlorine-related contamination.

Moosetail
  • Bachelor of Science – Nutritional Sciences
  • University College of the North
  • Supervisor: Annemieke Farenhorst

Isca Spillett was an undergraduate student in Human Nutritional Sciences at the University of Manitoba. Isca is a Cree woman whose roots can be traced back to communities in Northern Saskatchewan (La Ronge) and Manitoba (Opaskwayak Cree Nation). She is passionate about re-establishing traditional food harvesting methods that have been severely impacted as a result of colonization. Isca has spent time in Northern First Nations communities talking to Elders and traditional harvesters about traditional knowledge related to the ceremonial practices involved with traditional foods, water and medicines.

Isca was the recipient of a NEAHR student research award in 2013 that supported her work as an undergraduate research assistant with Dr. Annemieke Farenhorst. As a part of her summer internship with NEAHR, Isca developed a workshop called Niteh Maskihikiy as a way to engage youth in cultural reclamation and traditional harvesting methods.

Monkman
  • Law Student
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Karen Busby and Aimée Craft

Tiffany Monkman is entering her third year of law school at the University of Manitoba. She is Metis and was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Her research is about women as protectors of water. In Cree culture, women are regarded as water carriers and protectors because of their ability to carry a baby in water and give birth. Tiffany is exploring Cree philosophies in relation to water. She plans to interview four Cree women knowledge holders and learn more about women’s water teachings. Her career goal is to work in a legal setting that advocates for Aboriginal people's rights.

Sabri
  • Bachelor of Science
  • University of Manitoba
  • Supervisors: Annemieke Farenhorst and Francis Zvomuya

Erica is working towards an honours BSc in psychology, with a minor in biology. She then wishes to pursue a master's degree and do research. Erica has always been fascinated by the scientific side of psychology, with a focus on connections between genetics, cell biology, human physiology and behaviour.

She will help PhD student Geethani Arachchilage research water quality in cisterns for rural and First Nation communities, addressing the harmful effects of chlorine and other contaminants. Through this project, Erica hopes to gain knowledge about ways to start improving the health of these water sources. Additionally, she hopes to learn more about issues faced by people living in these communities.