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Graduate Students

Emily Unger Emily Unger
Supervisor: Dr. Ryan Bullock

Biography:

Since graduating with a Bachelor of Environmental Studies in 2020, I have had a keen interest in continuing my studies around environmental governance and resource management. I am now pursuing my Masters in Environment in the MESC program under the supervision of Dr Ryan Bullock. My research focuses on forestry and co-management resource agreements. My research will follow a relationship-based approach to understanding forestry governance and related capacity needs, working collaboratively with Eagle Lake First Nation to develop long-term solutions that account for the rights of, and also meet the long-term objectives and goals of forestry professionals and Eagle Lake First Nation. This project may serve as a model for future natural resource based projects to develop equitable resource management models. I am looking forward to being a part of the small and supportive research environment that the University of Winnipeg offers its students.



Patrick Carty Patrick Carty
Supervisor: Dr. Alan Diduck

Biography:

I graduated with a BSc in Biology from the University of Winnipeg in 2021.  My undergrad had a major focus on both Forest Ecology and Indigenous Studies and I have worked in the urban forestry industry for 5 years. I am currently pursuing my MEnv in the Masters in Environmental and Social Change program and am working on the Climate Learning and Adaptation for Northern Development Project (C-LAND).  The purpose of this project is to determine how climate learning can support adaptive capacity within intricate government settings.  This will be done by exploring various case studies involving the natural resource sector within northern communities across Canada. 

I was drawn to the MESC program by its interdisciplinary nature and I believe bridging natural and social sciences is crucial in understanding the climate issues we face today. The C-LAND project is particularly compelling as northern communities are often adversely affected by climate change and the natural resource industry.


Sean Goldstone Sean Goldstone
Supervisor: Dr. Alan Diduck

Biography:

In spring of 2020, I graduated from the University of Winnipeg with a BSc in Environmental Science (Hons) in the forest policy and management stream and a 3-year minor in biology.

Throughout my education, as well as enriching employment opportunities along the way, I have gained an interdisciplinary and integrated knowledge of the intrinsically linked natural and human environment. This has brought about a personal desire to stand up for social justice, and engage in sustainability issues. I have also identified a career centred around natural resource research and policy development as the most suitable route to aligning my values and goals with meaningful outputs.

This has driven me to pursue a Master of Environment degree through the Master in Environmental and Social Change (MESC) research-focused program. As recently acknowledged by the Manitoba Environmental Industries Association and Manitoba Hydro, the MESC program zeros in on integrated training that environmental industries truly need to make positive change. Through this program, I anticipate comprehensive development of my ability to work through an interdisciplinary and collaborative lens, as well as enhance a broad range of research and critical thinking skills made available through the program.

My research will examine linkages between social learning and adaptive capacity and how these concepts may translate to climate change adaptation in Canada’s renewable resource sector. The research will provide information and tools to guide adaptation strategies in correspondence to Canada’s international commitments under the Paris Agreement and federal objectives in pursuit of a clean growth economy.


Patrick Harney Patrick Harney
Supervisor: Dr. Ian Mauro

Biography: I graduated with a BA Honours in Anthropology from the University of Winnipeg. I am currently pursuing my MA in Environmental and Social Change under the supervision of Dr. Ian Mauro. Working with Dr. Mauro, my MA research focuses on how culture, values, politics and ideology shape perception of climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies among Canadian farmers. My project highlights the critical role of values-based and cross-cultural understanding in forging effective climate action. My research will investigate and integrate social research, digital storytelling, and the critical role that climate communications play especially when attuned to the needs and values of communities. My choice to join the MESC is motivated by a growing sense of urgency regarding the broad societal change necessary to face the climate emergency.


Alexandria Ireland Alexandria Ireland
Supervisor: Dr. Ryan Bullock

Biography:

I graduated in 2017 with a BA in Human Rights from the University of Winnipeg. I am a policy analyst with experience working with community-based organizations in the North End of Winnipeg in project planning, evaluation, and crisis support. My areas of research interest are the intersections of human-environment interaction with Indigenous rights, environmental racism, and treaty relationships. I chose the MESC program at the University of Winnipeg to have the opportunity to learn from and work collaboratively with the environmental and science sectors. A huge systemic barrier to sustainable long term social and environmental change is the “siloing” of sectors and initiatives. I am looking forward to returning to U of W, gaining experience on land based research projects, and studying with other students across program streams.


Ryan Shirtliffe Ryan Shirtliffe
Supervisor: Dr. Chris Storie

Biography:

Working under the supervision of Chris Storie, I will utilize remote sensing and drone imagery to identify defects and damage to railway infrastructure from hydrological impacts in northern Manitoba.  After graduating in 2016 from the University of Winnipeg with a BSc in Geography and entering the workforce, the MESC program presents an opportunity to continue to build on my academic experience, develop my skills further, and learn new skills.


Haven Soto Haven Soto
Supervisor: Dr. Nora Casson and Dr. Inoka Amarakoon (UManitoba)

Biography:

I am pursuing a Master of Science in Environmental and Social Change under the supervision of Dr. Nora Casson and Dr. Inoka Amarakoon from the University of Manitoba. My project aims to quantify dissolved and sediment-bound veterinary antibiotics found in spring-thaw snowmelt runoff in prairie agricultural fields. Livestock manure is often used to improve the physical qualities of agricultural fields, but veterinary antibiotics that is excreted (and present in the manure) are known to contribute to an increase in antibiotic resistance in environmental bacteria. Data and results from this study can be used to create policies for sustainable manure management under Canadian prairie conditions. I chose the MESC program because of its interdisciplinary nature and the opportunity to work with Dr. Casson and Dr. Amarakoon.


Nathalie Turenne Nathalie Turenne
Supervisor: Dr. Ed Cloutis

Biography:

My name is Nathalie Turenne, I graduated with a B.S.c in Environmental Sciences and a B.S.c in Geography from the University of Winnipeg in 2020. I am currently working on several projects in Dr. Ed Cloutis’s Centre for Terrestrial and Planetary Exploration (C-TAPE). During my Master of Science in Environmental and Social Change I will be researching how to detect and characterize microbalites and Mg-carbonates along with other material that may preserve biosignatures using mars-like spectroscopic instruments. Microbialites and Mg-carbonates are formed through deposition of sediments in water environments and thus entomb evidence of life such as chlorophyll and carotenoids, which can be identified using spectrometer. Evidence of life are identified as biosignatures and are important to the search for microbial life on Mars due to their ability to be preserved for millions or years within lithified rocks. Additionally, my research will tie into the landing site at Jezero crater due to it being an ancient lake and river delta on mars as well as my involvement with the Supercam team on the Perseverance rover as the science payload uplink lead and campaign implementation lead choosing and discussing rock targets that may hold clues to ancient life. I chose the MESC program at the U of W due to the great experiences I acquired in my undergrad studies. The passion of the professors and the community of the students created such a great environment. As well, the ability to have a great supervisor and continue doing research in the field of planetary science was a big factor.


Kirstin Witwicki Kirstin Witwicki
Supervisor: Dr. Ian Mauro

Biography:

Aaniin, boozhoo! My name is Kirstin Witwicki and I completed my undergrad degree here at the University of Winnipeg in Geography and Indigenous Studies.  As an Indigenous scholar, I am excited to collaborate with Dr. Mauro and the team at the University of Winnipeg’s Prairie Climate Centre. More specifically, I am interested in decolonial methodologies and wise practices that link Western science with Indigenous ways of knowing to best support community-level resilience and adaptability, while also examining climate-related disaster evacuations within Indigenous communities in Manitoba. 

I choose the master's program at the University of Winnipeg because of its interdisciplinary foundations. Working with people from a variety of disciplines and a diversity of worldviews and experiences gives us the best chance of finding creative and effective solutions to the environmental and social challenges that we face today.


Z. U. Wolf Z. U. Wolf
Supervisor: Dr. Ed Cloutis

Biography: I graduated with a B.Sc. (Hons) in Chemistry and a B.A. in Geography from the University of Winnipeg and I am now working towards my MSc in Environmental Science and Social Change under the supervision of Dr. Ed Cloutis. Since Mars' atmosphere is rich in carbon dioxide, presence of unique biology and geology is possible. My research involves the study of various types of silica deposits that are known to be widespread on Mars, including Jezero crater, site of the Perseverance Rover. I am investigating Mars analogue sites that are rich in silica as past research suggest that low-temperature deposits are able to preserve and entomb microbes. My research involves the examination of internal morphologies and compositions of selected analogue sites, as well as characterization of any preserved microbes. This will give insights into possible microbial communities Mars may host and how we might detect them on Mars using rovers. I choose the MESC program as working on these projects allows me to use both my chemistry and geography degrees in an area of research that is constantly evolving and that I am immensely passionate about.



Dan Applin Dan Applin
Supervisor: Dr. Ed Cloutis

Biography:

I manage the laboratories and instrumentation at the Centre for Terrestrial and Planetary Exploration at the University of Winnipeg.

As part of the M.Sc stream, I will be working on deriving refractive indices of a number of materials, while comparing and contrasting several existing methods. Refractive indices are required for radiative transfer modelling of atmospheres, soils, and regolith. These data on relevant minerals, pollutants, and aerosols are strongly lacking in the literature and existing databases.

I chose the MESC program at UWinnipeg because of the program size and interdisciplinary approach, and the availability of analytical equipment at UWinnipeg.