Research Assistants

Emil Briones | Polly Cheng | Christopher Dietzel | Anuradha DugalBeth Friesen
Chloe Garcia | Morgannis Graham | Shannon Hutcheson | Zameer Karim
Arianne Kent | Sarah Lewington | Benjamin NothwehrMilka Nyariro | Malaya Powers
Atiyeh Shohoudi Mojdehi | Andrea VelgheAyesha Vemuri | Yulia Yugay

 


Emil Briones

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (MA)

I work in collaboration with McGill's Faculty of Dentistry to deliver and develop a series of lecture-workshops in the second year of the Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) program. This work is underpinned by social justice scholarship, feminist pedagogy, and popular education traditions in order to critically unpack medico-social issues such as health equality, professionalism, and anti-violence work, as they relate to dental trainee's future roles as critically conscious healthcare providers.

 

Polly Cheng

Department of Education and Counselling Psychology (PhD)

I am a PhD student in counselling psychology and my research interests are in the areas of sexual violence and social justice. I believe it is essential to understand the intricacies of experiences and how it relates to someone’s identity. As a new member of the team on the IMPACTS project, I am very excited to participate and contribute to the research of sexual violence on campuses. My role on IMPACTS team is to review surveys, organize and analyze the data.

 

Christopher Dietzel

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (PhD)

My research examines sexual violence affecting LGBTQ communities as well as sexual consent on dating apps. I recently conducted an exploratory qualitative study examining Grindr and other similar apps to consider how normalized interactions and negative practices, including discrimination, harassment, and sexual violence, may occur online and in real-life. 

My goals are to help people recognize the value of consensual relationships, to challenge the negative normalized behaviours of rape culture that exist online and in society, and to advance rights for LGBTQ+ communities. Through education, leadership-citizenship, policy and law, and community engagement, I believe we can inspire positive change in society so everyone is able to enjoy healthy, respectful, and safe relationships. 

[Visit Chris' website]

 

Anuradha Dugal

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (MA)

Anu Dugal has been Director of Community Initiativesat Canadian Women’s Foundation since 2008and waspreviouslyBoard Member (2002 – 2007) and Chair of the Violence Prevention Committee. She is currently responsible fornational strategies related to violence against women and girls, including trafficking. While deeply implicated ingrant making, knowledge mobilization, program enhancement, convening, andcoalition building, her main area of focus is currently working onpolicy that will bring about systemic change for womenand girls in Canada. Anu is very involved in social issuesand she sits on MinisterMonsef's Advisory Councilfor the federal government strategyonGender-based Violence, as well as being a member of the Conseil des Montrealaises.

[Visit Anu's website]

 

Beth Friesen

Faculty of Law (BCL/LLB)

I am happy to be a part of iMPACTS because I see the need to address sexual violence on campus. As a law student with previous academic and professional experience in criminal justice, I have some insight into the legal structures that provide the framework for current approaches to this issue. Through my work on the project, I hope to put my legal research skills to the service of moving towards social justice. Since joining the team, I have been working on understanding what justice might be in a given context and how to facilitate the experience of justice from a procedural standpoint. I have also been looking at how privacy legislation may play a role in this. Through my work on this project, I hope to develop materials that can support improvements in the current systems of addressing sexual violence, both on campus and beyond.

 

Chloe Garcia

Lead Mentor

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (PhD)

I am a fifth year PhD candidate in the department of Integrated Studies in Education at McGill. My research intersects sexual consent and rape culture, sexualities education, and media and digital literacies. My research investigates how participatory cultures on YouTube contribute to sexual consent discourses, and I explore how the analysis and production of youth-produced YouTube videos contribute to undergraduate students’ understandings of sexual consent and their agency to effect personal and social change.

I thoroughly enjoy working on the IMPACTS project. To date, my contribution to the project involve the development and implementation of the student and faculty surveys and focus groups on campus climate surveys, student mentorship, and more (see my full page for details).

[Visit Chloe's website]

 

Morgannis Graham

McGill School of Information Studies (PhD)

McGill School of Information Studies PhD student in the field of digital preservation. I have been tasked with the management of the project's internal information systems (intranet and library), as well as the data sharing repository.

 

Shannon Hutcheson

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (PhD)

I am a doctoral student who came to Montreal to pursue research in international/comparative education and the international student experience at McGill. After working in education and studying School Psychology at the University of Minnesota, I spent four years working in Lyon, France as a Psychology and English as a second language (ESL) instructor in higher education. I'm happy to be part of the Define the Line project and I look forward to providing a comparative/multicultural lens.

 

Zameer Karim

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (MA)

I am a former broadcast journalist who’s come to McGill working on my MA in Education & Society. I am working on the IMPACTS Project focusing on bullying and sexism in politics and the media. I have a passion for news, current affairs and sports and have worked as both a news and sports journalist all over the world. When not working on the project, you can probably find me behind the mic broadcasting McGill varsity athletics, discussing the state of world affairs, or watching a game.

 

Arianne Kent

The Institute for Gender, Sexuality, Feminist, & Social Justice Studies (BA)

I am an Undergraduate Honours student studying in Sociology and Gender, Sexuality, Feminist, and Social Justice Studies. On top of being a research assistant for the Define the Line projects, I am an intern at Women in Cities International, a non-profit that aims to foster female safety and inclusion in urban environments. Through this internship I have worked collaboratively to develop the Right to Campus Campaign, an initiative that works to promote student safety, equity, and empowerment on campus. 

 

Sarah Lewington

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (MA)

As a first year MA in Education and Society with a focus on Gender and Women’s studies, I am looking forward to exploring my passion for activism and academics.  My research interests include critical race feminism, the integration of pleasure-based programming into sexual health education and utilizing Institutional Ethnography to better understand how knowledge of women’s experiences provides meaningful insight into countering the pervasiveness of gender-based violence on campus. I feel truly fortunate to be a part of Define the Line and immerse myself in a collective that seeks to make lasting change through addressing, dismantling and preventing rape culture in universities.

 

Benjamin Nothwehr

Sociology and Gender, Sexuality, Feminist, and Social Justice Studies (BA)

I am a fourth year undergraduate student with research interests in queer and transgender embodiment, interactions between gender and self-produced/new media (such as zines and mobile applications), grassroots social movements and coalition-building between minority communities, critical prison studies, transformative justice, and theories of the flesh. After completing my undergraduate studies, I hope to continue researching feminist media studies in graduate school. 

My work for this project includes helping to develop toolkits and research guides for use by researchers, educators, and students that spark discussion around rape culture on university campuses in order to approach these issues with a nuanced and intersectional lens. Additionally, I examine how different organizations and campus initiatives define themselves as 'survivor-centred', how this definition is weaved into the organization's praxis, and how they orient the responsibility of the bystander witness in cases of sexual assault. 

 

Milka Nyariro

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (PhD)

I have a background in Cultural and Medical Anthropology for my Bachelor’ and Master’s respectively. I am currently a third year of Ph.D candidate in the Department of Integrated Studies in education (DISE) with a major in Gender and Women’s Studies.  My research interest includes; sexuality studies, girlhood studies, gender violence in education, both explicit and systemic forms of violence. Specifically, I’m interested in studying how policies have reinforced the gender norms and perpetuated gender violence in education. My methodological approach is the use of Arts-Based visual participatory methodologies such as Photovoice and Cellphilm to advocate for policy engagement and social change in on gender violence in education. I work as an RA in Project B which focus on the use of Arts-Based Methodologies in addressing sexual violence on university campuses.

 

Malaya Powers

Faculty of Law (B.C.L./LL.B.)

During my undergraduate degree in Sexual Diversity Studies, I gained insight into the structures that facilitate and sustain rape culture and sexual violence. In law school, I have sought to learn how our justice system plays a role in sustaining harmful discourses about sexual violence, while also seeking to learn how our justice system may provide the answers for addressing such issues. As an editor with Contours law journal, the legal journal that reflects women’s voices in law, I am impassioned about learning about people’s experiences of marginalization vis-a-vis legal culture. 

I am enthusiastic about the possibility that legal education may provide the tools for both actors in the justice system, as well as those who engage with it, to combat sexual violence, which makes me particularly excited about the IMPACTS project. My research consists primarily of looking at how legal boundaries are shifting with social movements addressing sexual violence, such as the #metoo movement. 

 

Atiyeh Shohoudi Mojdehi

Educational and Counselling Psychology (PhD) 

My research focuses on the impact of cultures and developmental changes in children’s moral evaluations of lie and truth-telling. In on the IMPACTS grant, I investigate the youth perspectives and rape culture in terms of social norms and their view of their moral and ethical responsibility.

 

Andrea Velghe

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (MA)

As a master's student in Education & Society with Women & Gender Studies who is interested in matters surrounding youth, gender and sexuality, Andrea is orienting her studies towards sexualities education, especially through peer-led and community-based initiatives. She currently works as an outreach educator for several grass-root organizations in Montreal, all of which provide age-appropriate and comprehensive workshops on safer sex, LGBTQ+ identities and healthy relationships for high school students.

On IMPACTS, Andrea is developing guidelines for an anti-sexual violence toolkit. Her current research specifically looks into how educators apply survivor-centered, anti-oppressive and trauma-informed practices when leading arts-based anti-sexual violence workshops and courses. She hopes that her strong teaching background and her passion for sex ed will help inform more inclusive and comprehensive practices for other educators and facilitators.

 

Ayesha Vemuri

Communication Studies (PhD)

Ayesha Vemuri is a research assistant, coordinator and graduate peer mentor within the IMPACTS project at McGill University. Her research focuses on feminist activism against sexual violence, with a specific focus on social media and online platforms. She has published articles in Girlhood Studies, the Education and Law Journal, and in the Communications, Critique and Culture journal, related to young women’s activism against sexual violence and rape culture. Her other research interests include transnational feminist solidarity and the politics of “viral” anti-sexual violence campaigns from India.

 

Yulia Yugay 

Faculty of Law (B.C.L./LL.B.)

My internship with the Equality Effect in Kenya has deepened my interest in understanding how a particular legal system, and law in general, address cases of sexual violence. This summer, during my internship, I was working closely with girls who were victims of defilement and other forms of sexual violence, following their cases in courts, and monitoring police treatment of children’s cases. I was also involved in public legal education in primary and secondary schools setting on issues of sexual violence, which makes me particularly happy to continue my research with IMPACTS. My input consists primarily of legislation and case law research.