sherilee harper

EcoHealth Research with Indigenous Communities

Team Members

Research Managers, Associates, & Staff


Dr. Mark Andrachuk, Post-Doctoral Fellow

Dr. Carol Zavaleta, Post-Doctoral Fellow

Carlee Wright, Project Manager

Nia King, Research Associate

Dr. Zainab Yeabu Kargbo, MD, MSc, Medical Research Associate

Amy Kipp, Research Associate

Emma Windfeld, Research Associate

PhD & MSc Candidates

Kate Bishop Williams, PhD Candidate


Kaitlin Patterson, PhD Candidate

LJ Weber

Laura Jane Brubacher, PhD Candidate

Paola Alejandra Torres Slimming

Dr. Paola Torres Slimming, MD, PhD Candidate

Alexandra Sawatzky, PhD Candidate


Danielle Julien-Wright, DVM, PhD Candidate

Jen Jones for use 2015

Jen Jones, PhD Candidate

Jamie Snook, PhD Student

Sharon Edmunds-Potvin, PhD Student

David Borish, MSc Candidate


Jacqueline Middleton, PhD Candidate

Steven Lam, PhD Student

Amy Caughey, PhD Student

Matthew Pike, PhD Student

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Stephanie Masina, MSc Candidate

Vivienne Steele, MSc Candidate

Mackenzie Wilson, MPH Candidate


Anna Manore, MSc Candidate

Emily Mercer, MSc Candidate

Undergraduate Students &
Research Assistants

Julia Bryson

Julia Bryson, Undergrad RA

Matthew Buccioni, Undergrad Thesis Student

Crystal Gong, Undergrad Thesis Student

Marta Thorpe, Undergraduate Thesis Student

Isaac Bell, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Jessica Purbrick, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Chloe Zivot, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Team Member Biographies


Dr. Mark Andrachuk, PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow | 2017 – Current    

Mark works with communities on issues related to human dimensions of environmental change and natural resource conservation. His background and expertise are in social-ecological resilience and transformations, governance networks, knowledge systems, and climate adaptation. As a Postdoctoral Fellow (with Dr. Ashlee Cunsolo, Labrador Institute and Dr. Dan Gillis, University of Guelph), Mark is contributing to development of a community-based system for tracking environmental change in order to support wildlife stewardship and conservation. This monitoring system is centered on app-based data collection (e.g. using smart phones and tablets) in order to engage and empower Inuit sovereignty over adaptive responses to environmental change.

For his doctoral studies at University of Waterloo, Mark investigated how fishing communities can create or become more engaged in programs to improve livelihoods and ecological sustainability. This work, based in Vietnam, explored questions about fishers’ perceptions of environmental change, how to further engage fishers in co-management networks, and how successes with small-scale fisheries management can be replicated across communities.

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Dr. Carol Zavaleta, MD, PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow | 2017-current

Carol Zavaleta works with the Indigenous Health and Adaption to Climate Change (IHACC) research Program in Perú. Carol is a Peruvian physician who did a PhD in Health Geography at McGill University to have a more holistic understanding about the socio, political and environmental determinants influencing the health of Indigenous populations globally, and specifically in the Peruvian Amazon. For her thesis, Carol partnered with Shawi Indigenous communities in the Loreto region in Peru, to investigate individual and household factors affecting the nutritional status of Shawi children. She also developed an assessment of the household and community food system adaptive capacity to respond to climate change. For her post-doctoral work, Carol is being co-supervised by Dr. Lea Berrang-Ford from Leeds University in the UK and Dr. Sherilee Harper from Guelph University to conduct a meta-synthesis about the impacts of climate change on food systems and related health outcomes among the Shawi and Shipibo in the Peruvian Amazon.  In parallel, Carol is co-supervising graduate students working with the IHACC team in Peru in understanding the importance of Indigenous food systems for climate change adaption.

Before her PhD studies, she had worked in the Peruvian National Intercultural Center (MoH-Peru) and in the Tropical Medicine Institute Alexander von Humboldt of the Cayetano Heredia University to provide quantifiable evidence about the burden of diseases affecting Peruvian Indigenous populations. Carol is married to Hugo Razuri and they have two kids, Mateo of eleven years old, and Julieta of three years old.

  • Keywords: Indigenous peoples’ health; Peru; Nutrition; Food security; Climate change adaptation
  • Want to learn more about Carol’s work?  Click here.


Carlee Wright, MSc
Project Manager | 2017-current


Carlee completed her baccalaureate degree at the University of Guelph in 2014, majoring in biological science. She is currently a thesis-based MSc student in epidemiology at the Ontario Veterinary College, working with Dr. Sherilee Harper. Her research focuses on drinking water and acute gastrointestinal illness (AGI) in northern Canada, in the Inuit community of Rigolet, Nunatsiavut. Her project makes use of an EcoHealth research framework to assess the contamination of stored drinking water and its possible associations with self-reported AGI. Her project also aims to understand drinking water consumption patterns in Rigolet and how they have changed over time with new drinking water infrastructure in the community. The ultimate goal of this work is to use the generated knowledge to help inform sustainable drinking water interventions to reduce risk of waterborne infections, and inform risk assessments and public health messaging in Nunatsiavut and other northern Indigenous communities.

  • Keywords: Inuit; drinking water; coliform; waterborne illness; acute gastrointestinal illness
  • Email:
  • Want to learn more about Carlee’s work?  Click here.


Amy Kipp, MA
Research Associate | 2017-current

Amy completed a joint MA in International Development and Geography at the University of Guelph in 2017. Her research focused on human geography and the gendered dimensions of volunteering abroad. Specifically, her thesis explored themes related to the geographies of fear and care, and the systems of oppression that influence these geographies. During her MA, Amy had the opportunity to take a course on Global Health with Dr. Sherilee Harper, where her interests in health, global inequality, and community-based research came together. Since this class Amy has had several opportunities to further her knowledge on Global Health, including being a part of the inaugural Ontario Coalition Institute led by the Canadian Coalition for Global Health Research. Amy is currently working as a Research Associate with the Harper Lab where she supports the research being done, with a specific focus on the eNuk program.

  • Keywords: Gender, human geography, international development, geographies of care and fear
  • Contact Information:
  • Want to learn more about Amy’s work?  Click here.


Kate Bishop-Williams, MSc
PhD Candidate, Epidemiology | 2014 – Current    

Kate is a PhD candidate at the University of Guelph in the Department of Population Medicine (co-supervised by Drs. Harper and Sargeant). She completed an Honours Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Guelph in 2012 in Bio-Medical Science, and a Masters of Science in 2014 in Epidemiology. Kate’s undergraduate research focused primarily on gastrointestinal illnesses with a project on each of E. coli, Salmonella and the link between Johne’s disease in dairy cattle to Crohn’s disease in humans. Kate’s MSc introduced her to EcoHealth. Her thesis was titled: The Impact of Heat Waves in Rural Southern Ontario on Dairy Cow Mortality and Human Emergency Room Visits. Using statistical and epidemiological skills learned in her Masters, Kate is working on a project in Bwindi, Uganda, identifying seasonal and temporal patterns in acute respiratory infections and access to healthcare. Kate is particularly interested in the ability of clinical data to represent vulnerable populations.

  • Keywords:  Respiratory, Epidemiology, EcoHealth, Rural
  • Contact:    |     @kbishopwilliams 
  • Want to learn more about Kate’s work?  Click here.

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Kaitlin Patterson, MSc  
PhD Student, Epidemiology and International Development | 2015 – Current

Kate_website_picKate is a PhD student in the joint program in Population Medicine and International Development at the University of Guelph. Her Masters in Health Geography from McGill University (Supervisor: Dr. Lea Berrang-Ford) focused on food security among the Indigenous Batwa of Kanungu District, Uganda. The food insecurity reported by the Batwa is among the highest in the published literature. Kate values a community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach and incorporates both quantitative and qualitative methods into her research. Kate is now shifting her focus to maternal and infant health among the Batwa, a key priority identified at the local and national levels in Uganda for her PhD. Additionally she is the database manager for the Arctic, Peru and Uganda for the Indigenous Health an Adaptation to Climate Change (IHACC) project.


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Alexandra Sawatzky, BScH
PhD Student, Public Health | 2015 – Current

Alexandra is a PhD student in Public Health at the University of Guelph, where she graduated with an Honours Bachelor of Arts and Sciences degree in 2015. Broadly, she works at the intersection of environmental and human wellbeing. More specifically, her work involves the use of participatory, community-based approaches to develop deeper understandings of how changes in the environment impact various dimensions of wellbeing from the perspectives of Inuit living in Rigolet, Nunatsiavut, Labrador.

Under the advisory and mentorship of profs. Sherilee Harper and Ashlee Cunsolo – and alongside Inuit community and government partners in Rigolet – Alexandra’s doctoral project involves the participatory development of a health- and environmental-monitoring and response program. Essentially, this program prioritizes the centrality of land-based relationships; indeed, for Inuit, well-being is ultimately rooted in deep, intrinsic, interconnected relationships with the land. It is therefore crucial to understand these land-based relationships in order to inform the creation of adaptive pathways for dealing with environmental change that enhance well-being in innovative, culturally-safe, and community-centered ways.

The need for this program emerged from the many years this community has spent developing expertise in climate change research and strengthening relationships with members of the research team. Alexandra is honoured be a part of this team and have the opportunity to continue cultivating these relationships. Cultivating meaningful, lasting relationships necessarily involves stepping back, listening, and creating spaces that privilege Inuit voices and keep Inuit values at the heart of all conversations, decisions, and actions. In doing so, Alexandra hopes to engage in both research and community in ways that contribute to larger, ongoing processes of decolonization and reconciliation in Canada.

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Laura Jane Brubacher, BScH
PhD Student, Epidemiology and International Development | 2015- Current

LJ WeberLaura Jane is currently pursuing a collaborative PhD in Population Medicine and International Development Studies at the University of Guelph. She graduated with an Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Biomedical Science in 2015. During her undergraduate degree, she worked on a mixed methods project that analyzed health-seeking behaviour in response to acute gastrointestinal illness among the Indigenous Batwa peoples in Uganda, a population that was recently forcibly evicted from their ancestral lands. It was over the course of this project that she became interested in the importance of place to Indigenous peoples and its association with well-being. LJ’s doctoral research will involve learning about the centrality of place and connection to the land in Inuit conceptions of well-being, and how this may be associated with individuals’ experiences of healthcare provision.

  • Keywords:  place; healthcare experiences; health policy; participatory research; decolonizing methodologies
  • Email:
  • Want to learn more about LJ’s work?  Click here.

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Dr. Danielle Julien-Wright, DVM, MPH
PhD Candidate, Epidemiology | 2014 – Current

danielle_photo_bioDr. Danielle Julien-Wright was born in Grenada, West Indies and also lived in St. Kitts and Barbados before coming to Guelph to pursue a Bachelor of Science (Hons.) degree at the University of Guelph in 2000. In 2004, she started the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program at the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC). During this time, Danielle had the unique opportunity to travel to and volunteer in Kenya, Tanzania and Zimbabwe as part of the Global Vets program, and facilitated by Veterinarians Without Borders (VWB/VSF).

Resulting from these experiences, Danielle recognized the importance of sustainable community health and the utility of combining veterinary medicine with public health efforts in the control and prevention of zoonoses (diseases shared between humans and vertebrate animals). She completed her externship in the New Forest, Hampshire, UK and in 2008 graduated from the DVM program. After one year in companion animal practice, Danielle worked on a contract project with OMAFRA and the Poultry Industry Council (PIC). In 2011 she left industry to pursue a Master of Public Health (MPH) at the Ontario Veterinary College. In 2013 she started her PhD. with Drs. Jan Sargeant and Sherilee Harper in the Department of Population Medicine and Dr. Catherine Filejski at the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC).

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Jen Jones, MPH
PhD Candidate, Department of Geography

Jen makes her home in Yukon where she has worked and lived for over 20 years.  Her experience, both broad and diverse includes working with Yukon First Nation health and social departments and more recently evaluating health impacts in the context of resource development projects.  Currently, Jen is a PhD candidate in the Department of Geography at the University of Guelph and is co-advised by  Sherilee.  She is a 2015 Trudeau Scholar and recipient of a SSHRC Graduate Scholarship. Jen’s work seeks to understand and address the impacts of colonization on Indigenous health and well-being in the governance of the extractives sector.

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Dr. Paola Alejandra Torres Slimming, MD, DTM&H 
PhD Candidate, UPCH

Dr. Paola Torres Slimming is a PhD student in the Life Science program at UPCH in Lima, Peru. Her research interests focus on reducing health threats to vulnerable populations by trying to understand how diseases interact with social determinants of health, poverty, inequity. Paola is interested in finding novel ways of conducting effective studies that can bring primary health care level solutions by incorporating patient and community engagement through evidence based research.

  • Want to learn more about Paola’s work?  Click here.



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Jamie Snook, MA
PhD Student, Public Health   |   2016 – present

guelph-jpgJamie Snook was born, raised, and still lives in Labrador. As the Executive Director for the Torngat Secretariat he is often immersed in inter-governmental and research discussions about Snow Crab, Greenland Halibut, Northern Shrimp, Seals, Polar Bears and Caribou to name some of the highlights.

Jamie is a PhD student, studying Public Health through the Ontario Veterinary College’s Department of Population Medicine at the University of Guelph. Jamie is interested in Indigenous co-management, environmental stewardship, sustainable utilization, traditional knowledge, wildlife management, public policy analysis, communications, community wellness, community engagement, and leadership.

Jamie is also the former Mayor Happy Valley – Goose Bay, holds a Business degree, a professional designation from the Canadian Institute of Management, as well as a Masters in Ethno-Political Conflict Analysis and Management from Royal Roads University. Jamie is well travelled having visited all of Labrador, the Canadian provinces and territories, and many international locations such as Cuba, Mexico, Dominican Republic, United States, Thailand, Russia, Ireland, Spain, Iceland, Greenland, England, Switzerland, Holland, France, Morocco, and Germany.

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Steven Lam, MPH 
PhD Student, Public Health   |   2017 – present

Steven is a PhD student in Public Health at the University of Guelph, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in 2013 and a Master of Public Health in 2015. He is interested in generating, evaluating, and communicating evidence to inform programming and policy in the broad area of environmental health. After completing his Masters, he worked as an international consultant for various NGOs and research centres in Hanoi, Vietnam. Upon returning to Canada, he joined a Guelph-based consulting company and supported research and evaluation activities for projects relating to public health, local food, agriculture, and global food security. Steven’s doctoral research will explore the development and evaluation of approaches for monitoring changes in Indigenous food systems in the context of climate change.

  • Keywords: Food security, climate change, Indigenous health, program evaluation
  • Contact: | @thestevenlam
  • Want to learn more about Steven’s work?  Click here.

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Amy Caughey, RD 
PhD Student, Public Health   |   2017 – present

Amy is a registered dietitian who has spent over 15 years living and working in Nunavut.  Amy’s work has centered on public health and clinical nutrition with Inuit communities, where she has been involved with a range of initiatives related to food security, Inuit traditional food, diabetes education, pediatric nutrition, and zoonotic disease & food safety in the Arctic.  She has worked with – and learned from – community health representatives (CHRs), Elders, hunters, families, communities, researchers, health workers, governments and Inuit organizations across Nunavut. Amy completed undergraduate studies the University of Guelph, and holds a Master of Science in Human Nutrition and Metabolism from the University of Aberdeen (Scotland).  Amy lives in Iqaluit with her family.


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Matthew Pike, MA
PhD Student, Public Health   |   2017 – present

Matthew is from Happy Valley – Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador (NL) but recently moved to Mount Pearl, NL. Much of Matthew’s career was spent working on the Muskrat Falls Hydroelectric Project in Labrador however, he left that project in the fall of 2017 to focus on Arctic and Indigenous peoples issues. Since then, he has lived and worked in Norway with the Arctic Council and in Finland with UArctic. In May of 2017, he helped lead a Nunatsiavut delegation to the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in New York City. Matthew is interested in public health policy in Newfoundland and Labrador and policies surrounding the well being of Indigenous communities involved in or located near major natural resource developments. Matthew has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Aboriginal Studies with certificates in Public Administration and Criminology from Memorial University. Also, Matthew holds a Master of Jurisprudence in Energy Law degree from the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Matthew is an active Rotarian and has volunteered with many organizations including Habitat for Humanity, Children’s Wish Foundation and the Melville Native Housing Association.

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Anna Manore, BScH 
MSc Candidate, Epidemiology | 2015-current

Anna graduated from BSc program in Microbiology at the University of Guelph in 2015. During during her undergraduate degree, a co-op work term at the Public Health Agency of Canada sparked her interest in the effects of climate change on health, specifically in Indigenous populations. In September 2015, Anna began her MSc with the Harper Lab, working to understand the prevalence and sources of foodborne pathogens in clams in Iqaluit.



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Stephanie Masina, BScH
MSc Candidate, Epidemiology | 2015-current   

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Stephanie is a first-year MSc student in Epidemiology at the University of Guelph. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Sciences at the University of Guelph where she started a research project with Dr. Sherilee Harper and Kate Bishop-Williams exploring the burden of chronic gastrointestinal illness in Rigolet, Nunatsiavut. Stephanie developed an interest in how climate change affects water resources during her undergraduate co-op positions. In these roles, she monitored water quality and was introduced to waterborne disease mitigation and public health. Her thesis project aims to determine the prevalence and sources of waterborne pathogens in Iqaluit, Nunavut to explore why the rates of acute gastrointestinal illness appear to be high in this community. This is part of a broader, collaborative project (the PAWS project) aiming to develop a participatory, community-based environmental surveillance system to better understand and monitor pathogens in Iqaluit.

  • Keywords: parasites, water quality, waterborne disease, Inuit health, Iqaluit, Nunavut
  • Want to learn more about Steph’s work?  Click here.

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Jacqueline Middleton, BScH
PhD Candidate, Epidemiology | 2015-current

Jacqueline is currently pursuing her PhD in Epidemiology at the University of Guelph under the supervision of Drs. Sherilee Harper and  Ashlee Cunsolo. She graduated with an Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Life Sciences from the University of Toronto in 2014, where she completed a major in Human Biology and Psychology, and minored in Environmental Biology. This diverse academic background developed her curiosity in interactions between the physical environment and human health, and has drawn her to the field of EcoHealth. Jacqueline’s time spent as a research assistant in Psychiatry has led to her interest in mental health and well-being in the context of climate change. Through her thesis research, she will contribute to the development of a community-based monitoring program that will track and respond to climate change impacts on Inuit health in Nunatsiavut, Labrador, Canada. This work is being done in collaboration with community partners and the Nunatsiavut Government, and will examine how changing weather and climate impact mental health outcomes and healthcare service provision.

  • Keywords:  Inuit; Nunatsiavut; Mental Health; Seasonality
  • Want to learn more about Jacquie’s work?  Click here.



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Vivienne Steele, BScH
MSc Candidate, Epidemiology | 2015-current 

Vivienne is completing a MSc in Epidemiology at the University of Guelph. After graduating from McGill University with a BSc in Environmental Sciences, Vivienne was a research assistant for the IHACC Ugandan team. Inspired by an environmental health-focused exchange in a rural community in West Africa during her undergraduate studies, and her work experience in environmental consulting, Vivienne will continue to expand her understanding of environmental health research. Vivienne’s thesis will focus on access to maternal health care services in rural Uganda using data she collected in visits to Bwindi Community Hospital in 2015.

  • Keywords: Maternal health, Uganda, Indigenous, rural, antenatal, community-based
  • Email:     |     @SteeleVivienne
  • Want to learn more about Vivienne’s work?  Click here.

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David Borish, BA
PhD Student, Public Health & International Development    |     2016-current


David is currently pursuing his Master’s as an MSc student in the Department of Population Medicine, co-supervised by Dr. Ashlee Cunsolo. He graduated with an Honors Bachelor of Arts degree in 2016 from the International Development program at the University of Guelph, winning the Excellence in International Development Studies Prize. On the side of his studies, he worked as a multimedia artist, producing video and photographic content that examined socio-economic and environmental issues. In 2016, he worked with WWF-Malaysia and other conservation groups to published a documentary film about tiger conservation relating to sustainable development in Malaysia. David is interested in continuing to produce research-based multimedia projects that address global health, socio-economic, and environmental issues.

As part of his graduate thesis, David will be producing a research-based documentary film regarding the decline in the George-River Caribou Herd and the resulting effects on Indigenous health in Labrador. Under the supervision of Dr. Sherilee Harper and Ashlee Cunsolo, he will be working in collaboration with Inuit and Innu from Nunatsiavut, NunatuKavut, and the Innu Nation to tell the story of caribou from the voices, perspectives, wisdom, and experiences of people throughout Labrador. The film will aim to stand as a testament of traditional knowledge and Indigenous science related to caribou in Labrador, and educate both research and policy regarding caribou conservation into the future.

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Nia King, BScH
Research Associate | 2015-Current

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Nia graduated from her degree in Biomedical Sciences at the University of Guelph in 2017. Stemming from a love for global health, in 2014, Nia had the opportunity to conduct research in a small rural Kenyan village investigating community nutrition and the determinants of primary school absenteeism and dropout. In 2015 she joined the Harper Lab and has been working on a variety of projects including determining the indirect costs of acute gastrointestinal illness and completing a literature review to inform the federal government’s northern climate change adaptation strategy, and developing.

  • Keywords: Canada; Indigenous health; Inuit; Acute gastrointestinal illness; Cost of illness; Indirect costs; Health economics; Community-based research
  • Contact:
  • Want to learn more about Nia’s work?  Click here.

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Julia Bryson
Undergraduate Honours Student, Bio-Medical Science   |     2016-Current

Julia 1.4Julia is an undergraduate student majoring in Bio-Medical Sciences at the University of Guelph. She is passionate about global health, science, and social justice, which draws her to the interdisciplinary nature of epidemiology and the Harper Lab. Julia recently completed a systematic scoping review which investigates the associations between climate and the Neglected Tropical Diseases in East Africa with Dr. Sherilee Harper and Kate Bishop-Williams. She has also worked in Southwestern Uganda as a Research Assistant for Kaitlin Patterson’s study of maternal and infant health among the Batwa. Part of her time in Uganda was spent in local communities learning from women about their experiences with food during pregnancy. These discussions will inform her undergraduate thesis project investigating associations between climate and Indigenous maternal nutrition and food security in Kanungu District, Uganda.


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Isaac Bell
Undergraduate Honours Student, Bio-Medical Science   |     2017-Current

Isaac is entering his third year of a Bio-Medical Science major at the University of Guelph. He has a wide range of academic interests, spanning human health, environmental issues, anthropology, and the philosophy of science. For the summer of 2017, Isaac will serve as an undergraduate research assistant in the Harper Lab, contributing specifically to the IHACC project. In following an ecohealth research approach, Isaac is committed to maintaining respectful, community-based practices when studying Indigenous health adaptations to climate change.


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Mackenzie Wilson, BScH
Masters of Public Health & International Development Studies Candidate   |     2017-Current

Mackenzie is a first year student in the Master of Public Health and International Development Studies program at the University of Guelph, where she completed an Honours Bachelor of Biomedical Science with a minor in Nutritional and Nutraceutical Science in 2016.

As part of her undergraduate research, Mackenzie worked in Cambodia studying the sodium intake of rural Cambodians. This has shaped her interest in Global Health and Nutrition.

As part of her Masters, Mackenzie is traveling to Southwestern Uganda to examine how national recommendations for antenatal care are being implemented at the community level by health care facilities to elicit understanding and compliance in women receiving care. The project aims to understand national, community and individual levels of maternal nutritional care. Using qualitative data obtained through focus group discussions and key informant interviews, the objectives of the project are to improve efficiency and delivery of antenatal care, as well as improving other areas of maternal nutrition services in the region.

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Chloe Zivot
Undergraduate Honours Student, International Development Studies   |     2017-Current

Chloe is entering the final year of her undergraduate degree, majoring in International Development Studies, with an emphasis in Business and Economic Development. Over the course of her degree Chloe has developed a deep interest in food security, systems, and safety. After graduation she plans to pursue further studies surrounding global policy as related to food systems, climate change, and maternal and children’s health in the context of rural and indigenous populations both in Canada and abroad. Chloe really looks forward to working alongside the inspiring team in the Harper Lab this summer, and is thrilled to have the opportunity to contribute to the IHACC project.


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Jessica Purbrick
Undergraduate Honours Student, Arts & Science   |     2017-Current

Jessica is entering her fourth year of an undergraduate degree in Biomedical Sciences at the University of Guelph. Her academic interests span many areas including human health and physiology, population medicine and environmental science. After graduation Jessica hopes to pursue further studies in healthcare focusing on rural and indigenous communities. For the summer of 2017, Jessica will be contributing to the Indigenous Health Adaptation to Climate Change (IHACC) project, acting as an undergraduate research assistant in the Harper Lab.


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Crystal Gong
Undergraduate Honours Student, Arts & Science   |     2016-Current

Crystal is an undergraduate student majoring in Biomedical Science at the University of Guelph. Her passion for global health and human well-being, drew her to the interdisciplinary field of Epidemiology and EcoHealth at the Harper Lab. She is currently working on her undergraduate thesis with Dr. Sherilee Harper and Kate Patterson, which is focused on investigating the determinants and prevalence of seasonal food security in Rigolet, Nunatsiavut. Crystal is also currently working on a systematic review that will inform the current understanding of the effects of climate change on the food systems and nutritional health of Indigenous populations in Northern Canada. All in all, she hopes to engage communities through community-based participatory research, and learn about the determinants of health through cultural understanding.

  • Want to learn more about Crystal’s work?  Click here.



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Marta Thorpe
Undergraduate Honours Student, Biomedical Sciences   |     2016-Current

Marta Thorpe discovered her passion for Northern Canada as an evolutionary ecology research assistant for the Kluane Red Squirrel Project in the Yukon and as a Leg 9 Youth Ambassador for the Canada C3 Expedition in Nunavut. She hopes to link her passions for healthcare/resource availability, conservation biology and Indigenous reconciliation by exploring these matters as an undergraduate student in the Harper Lab. She will be analyzing ArcticNet survey data to investigate Indigenous Knowledges utilization and community-based approaches to research in the Arctic.

  • Keywords: Community-based, Indigenous, Indigenous knowledges, ArcticNet
  • Want to learn more about Marta’s work?  Click here.



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Matthew Buccioni
Undergraduate Honours Student, Biomedical Sciences   |     2017-Current

Matt is a fourth year student in the biomedical science program at the University of Guelph. Over the past few years, he has developed a passion for global health, epidemiology, and the dynamic relationship between human health and the environment. Matt has previously conducted research on implementing maternal and child health interventions in low-resource settings, leading to a strong interest in the process of translating research evidence into more equitable health policy. Matt is excited to join the Harper lab as an undergraduate research student in the Fall 2017 semester.

  • Want to learn more about Matt’s work?  Click here.

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