Research Assistants


Safia Amiry

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (PhD)


Safia profile photoI was born in Kabul, Afghanistan where, during the Taliban period, women were denied their fundamental rights. That made me more passionate about women’s rights and gender equality in all aspects. Therefore, I volunteered with many organizations back in Afghanistan, working on women’s advocacy programs. My Fulbright program in the US in 2017 allowed me to do a certificate program on Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, along with my Master’s degree in International Development Studies. Studying this subject academically gave me a clearer picture to reroute my focus for my Ph.D. program and further explore this subject.

I am currently enrolled in the Ph.D. program in Educational Studies with a focus on Gender and Women's Studies. I am planning to look at the role of women in the peace-building process in post-conflict countries, especially Afghanistan. Because I believe that the role of women and women’s needs are mostly undermined in the peace negotiation process where women are one of the primary victims during the war, which includes sexual violence. Being with the IMPACTS project allows me to better understand women and gender issues at different levels, including policy development, and further explore them through my research. I am looking forward to adding to my experience and also learning through this project.

Philips Ayeni

School of Information Studies (PhD)


Philips profile photoPhilips has a background in library and information science and he is currently undertaking a doctoral program in information studies with a research focus on open access scholarly communication practices of researchers in Canada. Being passionate about scholarly communication and open access has spurred his interest in current development landscape in scholarly communication. He has previous relevant experience in managing and providing access to information resources with the use of information technologies. He is therefore excited to join the team by managing the research data, teams project collaboration software and data repository associated with iMPACTS. He seeks to ensure that relevant data and research outputs related to the project are well captured, effectively accessed, and utilized.

Keihgan Blackmore

Faculty of Law (BCL/JD)


Keihgan Blackmore profile photoI am a third-year student at the McGill Faculty of Law (BCL/JD Program), with a B.A. from the University of Ottawa in Psychology and Philosophy. The BCL/JD program prepares students for a legal career in both of Canada’s legal systems - civil law and common law. As a member of the iMPACTS team, my degree is being put to very good use, as much of the legal research is necessarily national in scope.

My research focuses on technology and social media, with an emphasis on evaluating community standards and their impact on reducing harassment of various forms. Through my research, I hope to improve digital environments and make them safer for all users.

Alyson Gounden Rock

Desautels Faculty of Management (PhD)


Alyson Profile photoAlyson is a doctoral student in Organizational Behavior at the Desautels Faculty of Management. She studies social norms that contribute to unequal gender outcomes at work and in society. Current research (including a chapter in a forthcoming IMPACTs publication on social and mental issues related to COVID) investigates how this pandemic might affect the emergence, stability and change of discriminatory norms that surround working from home. Related research focuses on how social process contribute to organizational inequality through task segregation (in the context of US unions). Before her doctoral studies, Alyson worked as a strategy consultant (with Bain & Company and PWC), as a social entrepreneur, and as a volunteer with the HBS/HKS Community Action Partners, where her clients have included a not-for-profit organization that provides legal advice and services to victims of sexual violence.

Anita Hagh

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (PhD)


Anita profile photoAnita holds a B.A. in Linguistics & Russian and an M.A. in Education & Society, from McGill University. Her research focuses on emerging literacies, texts, and forms of communication in contemporary digital cultures. She is especially interested in the role of non-human agents, such as AI and algorithms, in the production of culture and information online. In projects related to these general research interests, Anita investigates the affirmative potentials of digital cultures and everyday online life. She favors research methods that are sensitive to affect, emotion and empathy, and that allow unique, holistic perspectives & analysis.

Shannon Hutcheson

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (PhD)


Shannon profile photoI 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.

Masoomeh Kalantari

Desautels Faculty of Management (PhD)


Masoomeh profile photoMasoomeh is a doctoral student of Organizational Behavior at the Desautels Faculty of Management. Her research investigates the role of gender and race in organizations. Understanding the organizational culture and how social and sociodemographic dimensions such as race and gender influence the nature of interactions within organizations are important factors in studies of organizational behaviour. As a member of the IMPACTS team, her research contributes to a better understanding of organizations and more specifically university campuses, and the critical roles gender and race may play in these settings.

Marine Khediguian

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (B.Ed)


Marine profile photoI am a second-year student of the Faculty of Education of McGill University, majoring in Teaching English as a Second Language. Through this major, I am mainly learning about the intricacies of the English language and the pedagogical implications of teaching this language in a francophone environment. In addition, I am learning about the integration of ESL students in an environment where their first language is not widely spoken, which can have a great impact on their integration. Outside of my own studies, I have been working in my community as an ESL, arts, and most recently mathematics high school teacher for grades 7 and 8, on a part-time basis. I also work as a private tutor for students with learning disabilities.

I am excited to have been invited to work on the IMPACTS research project and given the opportunity to contribute to this important initiative to start to understand the prevalence of gender-based violence in higher education. More precisely, I look forward to researching the extensiveness of this type of violence in the online school context we have been thrown in during the COVID-19 pandemic and how this new reality has affected the reporting of this type of violence.

Kaelyn Macaulay

Faculty of Law (BCL/JD)


Kaelyn profile photoI am in my second year of law at McGill, having previously completed a BA in English Literature and worked as a Digital Humanities research assistant at the University of Calgary. My role on the iMPACTS team will be to provide editorial support and to research legal issues related to the project. Throughout my academic and professional career, I have explored the overlap between the areas of education, policy, and accessibility. As such, I am most excited to contribute to raising awareness about the topic of sexual violence on university campuses, which represents a major barrier to education that disproportionately affects vulnerable groups.

Nina Morena

Department of Art History and Communication Studies (PhD)


Nina profile photoMy doctoral research explores the ways in which breast cancer patients seek and share health information on social media and how this impacts their disease management. I’m interested in intersections of gender and illness and how medical misinformation travels through platforms such as Facebook and Instagram. My work for IMPACTS is with Dr. Carrie Rentschler and her team. My responsibilities as an RA include data analysis, interpreting the results, and contributing to building Dr. Rentschler's archive of student activism.

Juliet Morrison

Department of Political Science and Gender, Sexuality, Feminist, and Social Justice Studies (B.A)


Juliet Morrison profile photoI am currently in my second year studying Political Science and Gender, Sexuality, Feminist, and Social Justice Studies (GSFS). From an academic perspective, I am intrigued by the complexity of tackling sexual violence and the challenges encountered when trying to meaningful address the issue, especially those from the legal framework.

I am thrilled to be on the iMPACTS project so I can deepen my understanding of sexual violence and contribute to research that informs better policy. As a student journalist who has covered sexual violence cases, I believe in the importance of maintaining a dialogue around tackling sexual violence at universities.

Sam Nepton

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (B.Ed)


Sam profile photoI am currently in my second year of the Kindergarten & Elementary Education program at McGill University. As a future elementary school teacher and a lifelong learner, I believe that education is our most powerful tool for addressing social issues. With that being said, I am interested in finding ways to improve the mental health and sexual education programs in educational institutions, and further research the benefits of these programs. Additionally, I am interested in learning more about how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted victims of cyberbullying and sexual violence, and how it has affected their ability to disclose information and access supports. Through iMPACTS, I hope to be able to research the realities of social media culture, sexual violence, and harassment, while taking part in knowledge mobilization efforts and providing educational opportunities to the McGill (and greater) community.

Benjamin Nothwehr

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


Ben profile photo

Benji Nothwehr is a queer, trans, and disabled researcher. They recently graduated with a Master’s degree in Communication Studies with the Graduate Option in Gender and Women’s Studies from McGill University. Building on their research interests in archives and queer/trans studies, Benji’s MA thesis explored how trans artists use archival materials in their work to generate new modes of historical inquiry and archival practice.

Over the past five years, their work with iMPACTS has focused on the creation of a digital archive of student activist materials. Spanning over 30 years, the archive documents student organizing around sexual violence on the McGill University campus, as well as other Canadian university campuses. Their other work on the project has included developing toolkits and guides on survivor-centered research practices for academics and other researchers interested in studying rape culture and sexual violence.

Nioushah Noushi

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (PhD)


Nioushah profile photoI am a PhD student working jointly in the Faculty of Education (DISE) and the Faculty of Dentistry (Population Health Axis). My PhD research seeks to gain insight into if and how professors, teachers, and clinicians incorporate social responsibility into their teaching approaches in the Faculties of Dentistry and Education, and the School of Social Work at McGill University. We also aim to understand the explicit and implicit influence that teachers can have on their students and trainees. 

By doing this research, I hope to have an impact toward improving dental education, students’ experiences, and thus improving oral health care for all.

Mathieu Nyarai

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (B.Ed)


Mathieu profile photoI am currently a second-year student in the Department of Integrated Studies in Education at McGill University, specializing in Secondary Social Sciences. Education has been a passion of mine for over five years now, and I particularly hope to use history as a framework to discuss broader sociocultural issues with my students. As for IMPACTS, I find myself drawn to issues surrounding our usage of traditional and social medias, particularly how portrayals of the objectification of women, hypermasculinity or sexual violence can have a normalizing effect on younger audiences. This is my first taste of the academic world, and I am very excited to learn from (and with!) the rest of the team.

Addy Parsons

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (B.Ed)


I am an undergraduate research assistant in my fourth year of McGill, working towards my Bachelor of Education and Bachelor of Music. I am interested in researching the intersections of education, policy, and law in order to better address barriers students face in reporting sexual violence.

Currently, I am researching the experiences of international students reporting sexual violence as they navigate the legal system through a systematic content analysis of US and Canadian case law. I am excited to be a part of the iMPACTS team and grateful to work with PhD Candidate Shannon Hutcheson on this topic.

Sara Sanabria

Faculty of Law (JD/BCL)


Before coming to McGill, I completed a dual BA between SciencesPo Paris and the University of British Columbia where I majored in international relations and political science. While at UBC I was a Research Assistant for the Hard-working Student Study conducted through the faculty of Education and led by Dr. Alison Taylor. Currently, I am in my second year of study at McGill's Faculty of Law.

As a Research Assistant on the iMPACTS team, I conduct research on legal issues related to the project and I provide editorial support. I am excited to be a part of the iMPACTs project because I get to meaningfully contribute to raising awareness about sexual violence on campus. As someone passionate about student's rights, this is a very important opportunity to me. I also look forward to conducting legal research on important contemporary legal issues such as the rise of "stealthing", the non-consensual disruption of intimate photos and sexual harassment on virtual reality platforms.

Farah Roxanne Stonebanks

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (MA)


Farah profile photoWhile completing my undergraduate honours degree in Psychology, my interests became focused on children’s and adolescents’ social and emotional well-being. Specifically, I began to examine bullying and anti-bullying programs/initiatives and how schools can work to prevent and react to the negative occurrences between students. The DISE graduate program will allow me to deepen my knowledge of education in order to further my research employing a variety of fields of knowledge.

My work for iMPACTS is based in Project C. It focuses on the role of news and social media in relation to its messages on rape culture, how these messages are interpreted by the university community and how media partners can work with universities to help address rape culture in their immediate and larger milieus. It is a meaningful and timely project which will produce positive long-term effects due to the authentic engagement and commitment of this collaborative team.

Sarah Zreim

Department of Integrated Studies in Education (PhD)


Headshot Sarah ZreimBorn in Canada, raised in Lebanon, I am a second-generation immigrant who seeks to make a dent in the world of girls’ education through research and teaching. I earned my bachelor’s in Education and master’s degree in ESL. I chose to teach at an all-girls school where I had first-hand experience with the educational challenges that impede girls’ personal, social, academic, and intellectual growth. This experience has inspired me to pursue my PhD. My research focuses on sexual harassment and gender-based violence among intersectional youth. I am pleased to join iMPACTS and work closely with a determined and influential team. Through my work with iMPACTS, I aim to gain a clearer awareness on women and gender issues in the Western world context.

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