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Graduate Students

Biology


Monalisa Abas Monalisa Abas
Supervisor: Dr. Tabitha Wood

Biography: My name is Monalisa Abas and I graduated with a B.Sc. in Biochemistry from the University of Winnipeg in 2020. I am now working towards my Master of Science under the supervision of Dr. Tabitha Wood. The project I am working on is in the field of synthetic organic chemistry. The goal is to design and synthesize a series of synthetically challenging benzamide molecules through a directed ortho metalation/nucleophilic aromatic substitution reaction to ultimately achieve a Truce-Smiles rearrangement.  The benzamide compounds are of interest for their reported ability to inhibit an important protein involved in bacterial cell division called FtsZ. This protein is not found in eukaryotic cells, therefore the benzamides prove to begood candidates for the design of new antibiotic drugs.

I decided to pursue my M. Sc. at the University of Winnipeg because I really enjoyed the faculty and atmosphere during my undergraduate studies. I quickly found a passion for organic chemistry leading me to work as a research assistant with Dr. Wood during my undergraduate degree. Here, I discovered mypassion for research which ultimately led me to pursue my M. Sc. under her supervision.


Arshiya Bagheri Arshiya Bagheri
Supervisor: Dr. Craig Willis

Biography: I graduated with a BSc in Cellular and Molecular Biology – Microbiology from Rasht Islamic Azad University in Iran. I am currently pursuing my MSc in Bioscience, Technology and Public Policy program under the supervision of Dr. Craig Willis. For my thesis project, I am excited at the prospect of conducting field research using radio-telemetry to quantify critical habitats of bat species endangered by white-nose syndrome (WNS), a devastating invasive disease that has killed millions of bats in North America. This fungal disease endangers bat species like little brown and northern myotis and we are using our citizen science website, batwatch.ca to find new maternity roosts and obtain count data from experimental colonies. I am fortunate that I have received the Faculty of Graduate Studies Award from the University of Winnipeg, which allows me to pursue my educational goals. Studying at the U of W will allow me to grow professionally as a scientist and contribute to animal conservation issues.


Lambert Baiden Lambert Baiden
Supervisor: Dr. Aunraag Shrivastav and Dr. Sara Good

Biography: I am an international graduate student. I have completed my bachelor’s degree in medical laboratory sciences at University of Ghana. I am doing my masters in Bioscience, Technology and Public Policy at the Department of Biology. I am studying cell signaling pathways linked to the onset and progression of human cancer which includes Bioinformatics analysis.

I work under the supervision of Dr. Anuraag Shrivastav and Dr. Sara Good. Under their supervision, I will develop the skills and reputation I need to launch into a lifelong path of intellectual discovery and professional success. I want to contribute my laboratory skills along with bioinformatics skills to their projects.  The University of Winnipeg gives great opportunities as there is a smaller ratio of students to supervisors, which provides maximum interactions with professors. I have the opportunity to work in a laboratory setting more often to increase my research experience and laboratory skills which will increase my capabilities in my field of study. I am a graduate research assistant and a teaching assistant, which gives me the opportunity to improve my communication, professional and laboratory skills. If you are truly passionate about research and ready to solve some of the toughest scientific problems facing the world today, then you are welcome to apply to the University of Winnipeg.


Ilena Benoit Ilena Benoit
Supervisor: Dr. Renee Douville

Biography: I received my BSc from the University of Winnipeg where I majored in biology and bioanthropology. During my masters I will study the affect of Endogenous Retrovirus K’s integrase enzyme in a fly model system. The integrase enzyme functions to insert viral DNA into our DNA which causes DNA damage and cell death. When this happens in neurons, motor dysfunction and pathological protein deposits occur and ALS-like symptoms can develop. Under the supervision of Dr. Renee Douville, I will determine the effect of the integrase enzyme on motor ability and lifespan in fruit flies. I will also treat the flies with integrase inhibitors in an effort to halt the progression of ALS-like symptoms. This will bring forward candidate antiretroviral drugs to inform clinical trials. I decided to do my masters at the University of Winnipeg because of my interest in virology and neuroscience and the opportunity to develop as a scientist in a close-knit lab with like-minded and supportive people.


Sophia Brown Sophia Brown
Supervisor: Dr. Craig Willis

Biography: I graduated with my BSc in Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental Biology from Purdue University. I am now studying movement and behavior of little brown bats under the supervision of Dr. Craig Willis. I will be tracking bats during the spring and fall seasons surrounding hibernation to learn about their habitat preferences, time budgets, and travel patterns. I decided to pursue my MSc in Bioscience at the University of Winnipeg in order to continue exploring my interests in ecology, to integrate science with policy, and to participate in public outreach.


Jamie Card Jamie Card
Supervisor: Dr. Caleb Hasler

Biography: I graduated with a BSc in Environmental and Conservation Sciences with distinction from the University of Alberta, majoring in Conservation Biology. I am currently studying the effects of catch-and-release angling on understudied fish species and in understudied conditions, working under the supervision of Dr. Caleb Hasler. I will be looking at stress physiology, behavioural impairment and injury in Freshwater Drum during spring and summer angling and in Yellow Perch during the winter through ice-angling. Freshwater Drum is a species of fish that has never before been studied in this fashion, and the effects of ice-angling are heavily underrepresented in the catch-and-release angling literature. I decided to pursue my MSc in Bioscience at the University of Winnipeg because Dr. Hasler’s research on fish biology and aquatic conservation is the area of conservation biology that I am most passionate about. As a result, I hope to pursue a career as a fisheries biologist with a focus on anthropogenic effects on aquatic ecosystems and the conservation of aquatic habitat for freshwater fish species.  So far I have been instructing laboratories for Cells and Cellular Processes (Biol-1115-3) and am looking forward to teaching labs for other courses in the Department of Biology.


Rebecca Carter Rebecca Carter
Supervisor: Dr. Susan Lingle

Biography: I received my BSc degree in Biology (Honours) from right here at the University of Winnipeg. I began working in Dr. Susan Lingle’s behavioural ecology lab for my Honours thesis and continued on in the lab for my MSc in Bioscience. I’m currently studying potential ecological and behavioural mechanisms that may facilitate or prevent hybridization between mule deer and white-tailed deer. Our lab conducts research on an amazing field site in the prairie grassland of southern Alberta that offers behavioural observations of undisturbed animals. The University of Winnipeg offers a range of unique research experiences such as this, and the feeling of community the small faculty provides is why I chose to remain for my MSc. I am the recipient of the University of Winnipeg Graduate Studies Scholarship – UWGSS.


Melanie de Pena Melanie de Pena
Supervisor: Dr. Susan Lingle

Biography: I graduated with a BSc in biology from the University of Winnipeg. For the last few years I have worked in the Lingle Lab as a field technician where I assisted with fieldwork and data collection for different projects.

I am currently working under the supervision of Dr. Susan Lingle, investigating apparent competition. I will look at the annual variation in abundance of ground squirrels to see if the numbers interact with seasonal differences in vulnerability between white-tailed and mule deer fawn survival. I am excited to gain more hands-on experience during my masters.


Nicole Dorville Nicole Dorville
Supervisor: Dr. Craig Willis

Biography: I am a very long-distance import from Singapore! I also studied in Melbourne, Australia at Deakin University, where I graduated with a Bachelor of Environmental Science (Hons) with a major in Wildlife and Conservation Biology. My research interests include human-wildlife interactions and disease ecology. I am from Dr. Craig Willis' bat lab which mainly focuses on conservation physiology and white-nose syndrome, a bat-specific fungal disease which has been devastating North-American hibernating bats for the last decade. My thesis is 2-part: 1) testing two potential treatments for the disease, and 2) studying the differences in disease susceptibility between two species of bats that contract the disease (one deals with it better than the other). I have been a grateful two-time recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarship and the Presidents Scholarship for World Leaders. I am also the graduate student coordinator of the Let's Talk Science outreach program at the U of W. Despite what people say about the flat and dreary nature of the prairies, I have visited many beautiful and friendly communities across rural Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario across the 4 seasons. These experiences have only helped grow my love for field work and science outreach with youth in remote areas.


Jenna Fleet Jenna Fleet
Supervisor: Dr. Caleb Hasler

Biography: I graduated with a Bachelor of Science with distinction from the University of Alberta double majoring in Biology and Psychology. I am currently pursuing my MSc under the supervision of Dr. Caleb Hasler whose lab focuses primarily on fish biology and aquatic conservation research. For my thesis project I am investigating how Japanese Medaka (Oryzias latipes) respond to elevated environmental carbon dioxide (CO2) over multiple generations. I will measure the physiological, behavioural, and reproductive performance of these fish and compare the data from each generation to determine if parental phenotypes and parental exposure to CO2 has direct effects on their offspring in elevated CO2. This research will help to build a comprehensive understanding of how some fish may respond to future environmental conditions. I chose the University of Winnipeg to join Dr. Hasler’s lab which offered support, flexibility, and a breadth of opportunities to explore my interests in comparative environmental physiology.


Karl Friesen-Hughes Karl Friesen-Hughes
Supervisor: Dr. Nora Casson

Biography: I graduated from the University of Winnipeg with a BSc Honours in Environmental Science.  My current research project is based at the IISD-Experimental Lakes Area at the Lake 239 watershed (which is located in a boreal forest).  I'm investigating how organic carbon moves across this landscape and how the quality changes as it moves from terrestrial to aquatic environments.  Part of this research is also contextualizing this within the long-term data that is available at my site, which will let us connect what we learn to climate change.  I work under the supervision of Dr. Nora Casson.  I decided to do the Bioscience MSc program at UWinnipeg because I was very interested in continuing research with Dr. Casson.  I also was interested in this program because I want to learn more about how science and the public interface.   Science communication is something that interests me, so this program was a good fit for me.  I also want to continue as a research scientist after my MSc, so I am very glad to have the opportunity to learn and be trained by Dr. Casson and the great lab group that she has.  This program has been a great chance to further my research skills and I look forward to diving deeper into my project.


Alwyn Go Alwyn Go
Supervisor: Dr. Alberto Civetta

Biography: I obtained my BSc. In Biochemistry (Hons.) at the University of Winnipeg in 2018 and am currently pursuing my MSc. under the supervision of Dr. Alberto Civetta. I work with fruit flies and am interested in understanding the genetic basis of speciation by taking advantage of the unidirectional hybrid male sterility (HMS) exhibited in the Drosophila pseudoobscura subspecies pair. HMS in the subspecies pair is due to incompatibilities between D. p. bogotana X-chromosome and D. p. pseudoobscura autosomes. A gene, Ovd, is found within the X-chromosome and has a major contribution to HMS. My project aims to identify interaction networks of Ovd using RNA-sequencing and transcriptomics.

I like making puns on the fly and enjoy the resulting groans from my lab mates.


Maureen Hanlon Maureen Hanlon
Supervisor: Dr. Richard Westwood

Biography: I graduated with a BSc from the University of Winnipeg. Working with Dr. Richard Westwood in the Centre for Forest Interdisciplinary Research, I study pest resilience and carbon sequestration in the city's urban forest. I attended an urban forestry trade school in 2009, and I’m glad for the opportunity to link my academic learning to my practical knowledge of urban forest management.


Justis Henault Justis Henault
Supervisor: Dr. Richard Westwood

Biography: I have a BSc Biology (Honours) Degree from the University of Winnipeg. My MSc research focuses on the habitat interactions of the endangered Poweshiek Skipperling (Oarisma poweshiek) butterfly. This butterfly is endemic to the tall grass prairie in Manitoba and the US and its population has declined due to habitat conversion to human agriculture. I study adult and larval behaviour of this butterfly to increase the understanding of its biology which will allow us to better manage habitat to maintain host plant quality in prairies where it still exists. My work also helps guide recent reintroduction efforts of this butterfly into natural habitats it once occupied. My work will contribute to the long-term successful survival of this butterfly species. I am supervised by Dr. Richard Westwood. This research has enabled collaboration with experts working on conserving endangered butterflies in Canada and the United States. It also allowed me to participate in international conferences and to work directly with government agencies and NGO’s to ensure recovery strategy of this species. I am a recipient of the Research Manitoba Graduate Scholarship, Manitoba Graduate Scholarship and Graduate Studies Travel Grant Award. I chose the University of Winnipeg for interaction with professors and research opportunities with real world applications to benefit the quality of the environment.

I am a recipient of the EMILI Master of Science award.


Ilya Kisselev Ilya Kisselev
Supervisor: Dr. Sara Good

Biography: I completed my BSc (Hons) in Biotechnology at Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (Almaty, Kazakhstan) in 2020. My research at the University of Winnipeg, under the supervision of Dr. Sara Good, focuses on the population genetics of Kazakhs.  Using Y-STR markers and mtDNA data, I study how cultural practices such as postmarital residential patterns influence the genetic variation of the modern Kazakh population. Along with studying and working on my thesis project, I have been instructing laboratories for Cells and Cellular Processes at the University of Winnipeg. I decided to do the MSc in Bioscience, Technology and Public Policy because the university offers great research experiences and plenty of opportunities to develop soft skills.


Abinash Kumar Abinash Kumar
Supervisor: Dr. Anuraag Shrivastav

Biography: I received my Integrated M.Sc. degree in Mathematical Sciences from the National Institute of Science Education and Research (NISER), Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India.

I work under the supervision of Dr. Anuraag Shrivastav who works on cell signaling mechanisms and their relation to Cancer Cells. My work collides with the study of Mathematical Modelling of such relations which gives the predictions of further processes which normally are hard to achieve experimentally. I try to understand various co-relations and the activities in cellular level and explain them using differential equations.

I received the prestigious INSPIRE fellowship during my Integrated M.Sc. I am also a recipient of the Bioscience Graduate Award.

During my tenure, I grew an interest towards Bioscience. I always wanted my work in mathematics to be seen socially and since Biomathematics is a rising field currently, I found Biology as the perfect platform to apply my skills. I am hoping to continue my study in this field in the future.


Alejandro Luchoni Alejandro Luchoni
Supervisor: Dr. Athar Ata

Biography: My name is Alejandro Luchoni and I graduated from the University of Winnipeg in 2017 with my Bachelor of Science degree in biology. Currently, I am in the second year of my Master of Science in Bioscience, Technology and Public Policy. I am working under the supervision of Dr. Athar Ata and performing phytochemical studies on medicinally important plants. Our goal is to isolate natural products which could behave as a-glucosidase inhibitors for the treatment of type II diabetes mellitus. Our research is sponsored by the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council and in 2017 and 2018 I received the Bioscience Graduate Student Scholarship. Throughout my undergrad, I was able to develop strong relationships with many professors in both the chemistry and biology departments. These connections were integral in allowing me to pursue my passion of contributing to healthcare related research at the University of Winnipeg. 


Breanna Meek Breanna Meek
Supervisor: Dr. Renée Douville

Biography: I graduated with my BSc in Biology (Honours) from the University of Winnipeg in 2019. During my Honours thesis, I studied the association between the endogenous retrovirus-K (ERVK) integrase protein and the neurological disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). I started my MSc in the Fall of 2019 with funding I received from the Canadian Institute for Health Research (CIHR), continuing my research on ERVK integrase and its affect on DNA damage, inflammation, and cell death. My research focuses on how this integrase protein breaks DNA causing DNA damage and an inflammatory response. Our lab has found ERVK integrase expressed in the brain and spinal cord of patients with ALS. Understanding the association between ERVK integrase and ALS can help to develop novel treatment option for patients. I am working under the supervision of Dr. Renée Douville.


Kristina Muise Kristina Muise
Supervisor: Dr. Craig Willis

Biography: I recently started my M.Sc in September of 2018 after completing a B.Sc (Honours) in 2014 (also at the University of Winnipeg). I work under the supervision of Dr. Craig Willis and will be studying a captive colony of big brown bats housed at the university. My project will examine the effect of ambient conditions and huddling behaviour on the hibernation physiology of bats. Throughout my undergraduate and graduate degrees, I am fortunate to have been awarded multiple scholarships and grants.  Most recently, I received the University of Winnipeg Graduate Student Travel Grant (https://www.uwinnipeg.ca/graduate-studies/funding/awards-and-scholarships.html) and The Wildlife Society Student Travel Grant (Manitoba Chapter) which allowed me to travel to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico to present my research at the North American Symposium on Bat Research. Overall, my education at the University of Winnipeg will allow me to have a foundation in research, which I can build on with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree, and eventually a Ph.D.


Revanti Mukherjee Revanti Mukherjee
Supervisor: Dr. Anuraag Shrivastav

Biography: I am an international student from India pursuing master's program in Biosciences, Technology and Public Policy in Fall 2020. I graduated with a Bachelors of Technology (B.Tech) degree in Biotechnology from VIT University in Vellore, India. I have always been fascinated by the enigma of biology which evoked my interest in cell and molecular biology, genetics, biotechnology, bioinformatics. The astounding aspect of this branch of science is the wealth of information unlocked in this genomic era of biology by decoding the information contained in our genes. This explosion of information has paved the way for interpretation of the underlying mechanisms of chronic diseases like cancer. Aberrations in signal networks in our cells are integral to the formation and growth of cancer. I am working under the supervision of Dr. Anuraag Shrivastav- In my research, I will be studying about the genetic variants in cancer cells and their role in signaling pathways that control the processes associated with oncogenesis. Mutational analysis of cancer cells will lead to a better understanding of cancer progression and the identification of potential biomarkers for therapeutics.

I chose the University of Winnipeg for my masters as it is a place of opportunity fostering intellectual and professional development. The Graduate Studies at the biology department offers an ideal academic environment with small class-sizes and a personalised level of attention. The department is also very supportive and encourages students to reach their full potential. I am the recipient of the Bioscience Graduate award and the President’s Scholarship for World Leaders. My ultimate goal is to continue in the field of healthcare research and contribute to the existing body of scientific knowledge.


Chris Patterson Chris Patterson
Supervisor: Dr. Jacques Tardif

Biography: I received my BSc (Hons.) from the University of Winnipeg, majoring in Environmental Science: Forest Policy and Management. Having gained an appreciation for the intricacies of Environmental Science, I decided to shift my focus towards biology and the study of forest dynamics. I started my MSc in 2020 at the University of Winnipeg under the supervision of Dr. Jacques Tardif (U of W Dendroecology Lab). My thesis work in dendrohydrology involves conducting stem analysis of black ash (Fraxinus nigra) trees, a riparian ring-pours species, from the Abitibi Plains Ecoregion (northwestern Québec). I am using tree-ring anomalies (flood-rings), which have been shown to appear below flood levels not above, to determine their significance as a proxy for historical flooding. My research is part of a multidisciplinary project examining the hydrological, climatological, and anthropological relationships between regulated and unregulated rivers and lakes. My work will contribute to a better understanding of regional flood regimes, and the impacts climate change and hydroelectric generation have on forest dynamics. As an MSc candidate I have enjoyed teaching introductory biology labs and look forward to additional teaching experiences. I decided to pursue my MSc in Bioscience at the U of W because of the support and guidance I received as an undergraduate. The biology graduate program (faculty and students), has been no different, and has been overwhelmingly supportive and receptive.


Jenny Pawluk Jenny Pawluk
Supervisor: Dr. Robert Anderson

Biography: I graduated with a BSc from the University of Winnipeg and began a MSc in Bioscience, Technology, and Public Policy in 2019. I work under the supervision of Dr. Robert Anderson in collaboration with the City of Winnipeg Insect Control Branch where we are researching new methods of monitoring and controlling Winnipeg mosquito populations. My future interests include infectious disease and vector-transmission research, with a focus on mosquito-transmitted pathogens such as malaria. I have received the Orkin Award from the Entomological Society of Manitoba. Since the start of my MSc program, I have been volunteering for Let’s Talk Science and have been instructing laboratories for Cells and Cellular Processes and Evolution, Ecology and Biodiversity at the University of Winnipeg.


Sreelakshmi Rajesh Sreelakshmi Rajesh
Supervisor: Dr. Rafael Otfinowski

Biography: I am Sreelakshmi Rajesh and I am studying with Dr. Rafael Otfinowski in the Department of Biology to complete my Masters in Bioscience, Technology and Public Policy at the University of Winnipeg. I received my first M.Sc. in Botany from Mahatma Gandhi University, one of the most prestigious educational institutes in Kerala, India, where I also completed my B.Sc. My current project focuses on the effects of grazing on the function of wet meadow ecosystems in Manitoba. In my research, I will examine the effect of cattle grazing on the distribution, biomass, and anatomy of roots in wet meadow rangelands. My research is supported by the Mitacs Accelerate Internship and a collaboration with the Manitoba Beef and Forage Initiatives Inc. I am also working with undergraduate students as a laboratory instructor for the Biology of Cells and Cellular Processes (Biol-1115). I am excited to see how my experiences at the University of Winnipeg help me develop as a future researcher and teacher!


Colleen Robertson Colleen Robertson
Supervisor: Dr. Rafael Otfinowski

Biography: I graduated from the University of Manitoba in 2020 with my Bachelor of Environmental Science (Honours), specializing in conservation and biodiversity. With the support of NSERC’s Canada Graduate Scholarship (Masters), I am pursuing my Master of Science in the Prairie Lab, studying grassland restoration ecology with Dr. Rafael Otfinowski. In collaboration with Parks Canada and Riding Mountain National Park, I am researching the resilience of historically grazed grasslands to climate change. My research will help restore and manage grasslands in western Canada to support their diversity and sustain the ecosystem services they provide. The Bioscience, Technology, and Public Policy program at the University of Winnipeg gives me the unique opportunity to combine ecological research, environmental and public policy, and field work in the most pristine natural grasslands in Canada.


Cora Romanow Cora Romanow
Supervisor: Dr. Susan Lingle

Biography: I graduated with a BSc from the University of Winnipeg. I majored in biology (Hons) and minored in mathematics. Throughout my undergraduate degree, I had the opportunity to participate in and even lead several research projects designed by Dr. Susan Lingle. I am continuing under the supervision of Dr. Susan Lingle for my MSc research to study the mating tactics of female white-tailed deer and mule deer. Specifically, I am investigating whether female deer play a more active role in courtship than the current dogma seems to suggest. The opportunity to continue conducting non-invasive field research on wild animals was a major deciding factor in my choice to remain at the University of Winnipeg for my graduate degree.


Matthew Russell Matthew Russell
Supervisor: Dr. Richard Westwood

Biography: I completed my Bachelors of Science at the University of Alberta, specializing in evolutionary biology.  During my undergraduate degree I completed my honors thesis studying the effect of semiochemicals on a parasitoid wasp complex around ash leaf-cone roller. My research at the University of Winnipeg, supervised by Dr. Richard Westwood focuses on management of Dutch elm disease (DED) in the urban forest. My research aims to identifying infected elm trees harbouring a large majority of the beetle vector population spreading DED. Successful prioritized removal of these “super-shedder” trees before the beetles disperse in the early fall to overwinter will potentially reduce the spread and incidence of DED in Winnipeg. Surveys of disease progression, disease symptoms and vector population along with spatial analysis will identify these “super-shedder” trees.

I have received the SERG international graduate student award supporting students researching related topics to SERG-I areas of interest, such as forest pest management.

I decided to complete my Masters at the University of Winnipeg because throughout my undergraduate degree I had a passion for entomological research. Furthermore the project at the U of W provides relevant research analysing one of the most influential insect-born diseases in Canada.


Simran Sandhu Simran Sandhu
Supervisor: Dr. Athar Ata

Biography: I was raised in Northern part (Uttra Pradesh) of India and graduated with BSc (Hons) in Biotechnology from Punjabi University, Punjab, India where I studied about Physio-chemical properties of soil and plants.

Currently, I am pursuing my MSc in Bioscience, Technology and Public Policy at University of Winnipeg. I am working with the natural products in a chemistry lab under the supervision of Dr. Athar Ata. My project goal is to isolate natural products from medicinally important plants exhibiting α-glucosidase inhibiting active compounds with the bioactive potential to produce drugs to treat type-2 diabetes. The aim of research is to lower the side-effects of present day medicines through traditional herbs.

The University of Winnipeg is a wonderful community, offers unique research experiences for future academic career.


Alyssa Stulberg Alyssa Stulberg
Supervisor: Dr. Craig Willis

Biography: I recently graduated from the University of Regina where I received a BSc Honours in Biology and a Certificate in German. I am interested in a wide range of topics related to wildlife, but for my MSc I am predominantly focusing on wildlife disease ecology.  Under the supervision of Dr. Craig Willis I am investigating potential methods to inhibit the growth of Pseudogymnoascus destructans, the fungus causing white-nose syndrome, in environments where bats hibernate. White-nose syndrome has killed millions of bats across North America, and we hope environmental treatments will create habitats in which bat populations can persist throughout the spread of the disease. We are working in collaboration with Bat Conservation International, Lockhaven University, Northern Arizona University, and the US Forest Service. I am a grateful recipient of the CGS-M scholarship through the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada. Pursuing my MSc in Bioscience at U of W will allow me to do some of my favourite things: meet great people, travel to beautiful places, grow as a scientist, and contribute to important conservation issues.


Samantha Tinkler Samantha Tinkler
Supervisor: Dr. Paul Holloway

Biography: I graduated with my BSc degree in Biology from the University of Winnipeg.

My research is on the pesticidal properties of secondary metabolites of a fungal endophyte found within the Douglas fir tree (Pseudotsuga menziesii). The fermentation, extraction, and testing of this metabolite on Spruce Budworm (Choristoneura sp.) is done under the supervision of Dr. Paul Holloway. The analysis and identification of the active compounds is done under the supervision of Dr. Athar Ata.


Emma Traynor Emma Traynor
Supervisor: Dr. Caleb Hasler

Biography: Hi, my name is Emma Traynor! I graduated with a BSc degree in biology with a major in marine biology from the University of New Brunswick. Currently, I am studying the effects of CO2 on Salmonidae species, such as brook trout and rainbow trout, under the guidance of Dr. Caleb Hasler. Specially, I am looking at how different species within the same family respond to CO2 in both a physiological and behaviourally manner. I decide to come to the University of Winnipeg so I could continue research on the species of fish I find very interesting as well as to experience a new province.


Connor Watson-Savage Connor Watson-Savage
Supervisor: Dr. Richard Westwood

Biography: I completed my BSc. with honors at Dalhousie University, Halifax, and a minor in Early Modern Studies at the University of King’s College, Halifax, in 2018. There, I received the 2017 Margaret & Elwin Malone Memorial Scholarship, and currently I am a recipient of the Mitacs Accelerate Program (2018-2019). I came to Manitoba in 2018 because of the unbridled research opportunities it presents for naturalists. I am now completing a MSc. at the University of Winnipeg on the endangered Poweshiek Skipperling (Oarisma poweshiek). This small butterfly is a tallgrass prairie-obligate which is restricted to several sites in Manitoba & Michigan; less than 1% of its historic range. Estimates of their abundance suggest there are less than 500 adult Poweshieks left in the world. My research is on optimizing the existing ex-situ conservation methods for the species and the implications of climate change on the species, with a focus upon larval-rearing under the supervision of Dr. Richard Westwood of UWinnipeg and Stephen Petersen of Assiniboine Park Zoo.


Tyler Winsor Tyler Winsor
Supervisor: Dr. Nora Casson

Biography: Hi my name is Tyler Winsor, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Aquatic Resources and Biology from St. Francis Xavier University on the East Coast.  During my undergrad I worked as a research assistant on a project looking at the restoration of primary producers at an effluent facility restoration.  In summer of 2020 I worked as a field biologist doing various surveys in remote habitats.  Now I am studying the mechanisms of how carbon is transferred and stored across boreal landscapes.  I am working on a project near Yellowknife, North West Territories under the supervision of Dr. Nora Casson.  I am learning lots about the biogeochemical processing of carbon and hope to one day use mechanisms of carbon storage to mitigate climate change.  I love the outdoors and learning new things, I’m excited to see what the environment of Winnipeg and NWT have to offer.


Caleb Wong Caleb Wong
Supervisor: Dr. Caleb Hasler

Biography: I graduated with my BSc (Hons) in Biology at the University of Winnipeg in 2020. For my Honours thesis, I investigated the effects of zebra mussels on freshwater drum (Aplodinotus grunniens) diet and growth, which led to a publication in the Journal of Great Lakes Research. I am currently pursuing my MSc under the supervision of Dr. Caleb Hasler, whose lab specializes in fisheries and aquatics research. I will be using molecular markers to characterize the genetic diversity, health, and structure of sauger (Sander canadensis) populations in Manitoba. Several sauger populations in the province are in decline or on the brink of extirpation, and my research will be instrumental in improving management strategies for these populations. I chose to continue my education at the University of Winnipeg because of my excellent undergraduate experience and the outstanding faculty and staff. I am looking forward to gaining new skills and knowledge with the Hasler lab as I pursue a career as a fisheries biologist.