Doctoral Citations

A doctoral citation summarizes the nature of the independent research, provides a high-level overview of the study, states the significance of the work and says who will benefit from the findings in clear, non-specialized language, so that members of a lay audience will understand it.
Year Citation Program
2024 Dr. Pokhrel studied the role of geothermal energy for global decarbonization potential. He developed numerical models to understand the physical behavior of complex subsurface reservoirs for extracting geothermal energy. Doctor of Philosophy in Mining Engineering (PhD)
2024 Health monitoring is essential to enable timely and appropriate care for newborns. However, this is limited in low-to-middle-income countries due to insufficient resources and health staff. Dr. Grooby examined accessible newborn health monitoring. He developed software to monitor heart and lung health using digital stethoscopes and video cameras. Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical and Computer Engineering (PhD)
2024 Dr. Stephan directed stem cells into liver and studied how the cells changed their identity. She found a specific protein in newly forming liver cells, TBX3, that may be responsible for pushing cells towards using liver genes. Knowing how cells turn into liver cells can be used to produce lab-grown livers replacing conventional organ transplants. Doctor of Philosophy in Cell and Developmental Biology (PhD)
2024 Dr. Ha investigated the impact of elevated carbon dioxide on plant-insect interactions across multiple insect species. His work narrowed knowledge gaps on how different insect species respond to feeding on CO2-enriched host plants, and contributed towards gaining a deeper understanding of how plant-insect interactions can change in the near future. Doctor of Philosophy in Integrated Studies in Land and Food Systems (PhD)
2024 Dr. Zhang studied waxes sealing plant surfaces. She found whitish appearance of leaves to wax nanocrystals formed by characteristic wax compounds, and her analysis revealed the mechanisms underlying the formation of these compounds. This research will inform the breeding of drought-resilient crops and engineering waterproof compounds. Doctor of Philosophy in Botany (PhD)
2024 Dr. Rees developed and characterized dextran-coated nanoparticles and nanoparticle assemblies for bioanalytical applications such as the specific labelling of cancer cells. These materials were very brightly fluorescent, stable, non-fouling, and will help enable point-of-care diagnostic technology that will make molecular medicine more accessible. Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (PhD)
2024 Dr. Gogoi examined how satellite-based crop yield estimation in the Canadian Prairie region can be improved by using new multi-source, multi-variable datasets, and machine and deep learning methods. Her studies have improved our ability to estimate crop yields at fine spatial scales and to forecast them a few months ahead of time. Doctor of Philosophy in Resources, Environment and Sustainability (PhD)
2024 Dr. Frieling used laser cooled atoms to create ultra-cold molecules and study chemical reactions at 1 millionth of a degree above absolute zero and to characterize the performance of a new quantum atomic sensor for vacuum metrology relevant for applications in aerospace and semi-conducting fabrication industries. Doctor of Philosophy in Physics (PhD)
2024 Dr. Herberts developed a noninvasive blood profiling technology for patients with metastatic prostate cancer, enabling expedited discovery of treatment resistance mechanisms to common cancer drugs, and helping clinicians select treatment tailored to patient's unique tumor biology. This test is now being evaluated in two Canadian clinical trials. Doctor of Philosophy in Genome Science and Technology (PhD)
2024 Dr. Gill examined how different types of childhood poverty experience affect children's development, health, and school success from kindergarten to high school graduation in British Columbia, and how these relationships differ by the child's immigration background. This work can inform intervention and policy to reduce harms related to poverty. Doctor of Philosophy in Population and Public Health (PhD)
2024 Dr. Pourzahedi's research delved into the dynamics of gas propagation inside complex fluids, offering strategies to manipulate gas presence inside such media. Relevant to mitigating greenhouse gas emissions from tailings ponds, understanding gas behavior in these fluids holds significant importance for sustainability and environmental preservation. Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering (PhD)
2024 Dr. Alemzadeh Mehrizi investigated roles of 5 proteins in the deadliest subtype of uterine cancer. She discovered that the elevated levels of these proteins are reducing patients' survival, and increasing the invasiveness of the cancer cells. Her findings provide novel insights into new ways of treating this deadly subtype of uterine cancer. Doctor of Philosophy in Reproductive and Developmental Sciences (PhD)
2024 Dr. Bacon used DNA sequencing to explore genomic associations with poor disease outcomes in patients with genitourinary cancers. His work has demonstrated the role of circulating tumour DNA as a tool for predicting survival in patients with kidney cancer, as well as the prognostic utility of specific gene alterations in patients with bladder cancer. Doctor of Philosophy in Genome Science and Technology (PhD)
2024 Why is the natural world so diverse in its shape and form? Is diversity random or driven by natural selection? Dr. Boehm studied the beaks of tropical hummingbirds, and the flowers they visit, to answer these questions. He concludes that extreme curvature is a result of niche partitioning, while other shapes remain unknown in their origin. Doctor of Philosophy in Botany (PhD)
2024 Dr. Aslanimehr conceptualized exile as an internal force carried within, hindering recognition. Her work explored the tension between self-understanding and how others perceive us. Applied within academia, she challenges the theory of recognition by emphasizing attentive listening attuned to the unique experiences that may send the self to exile. Doctor of Philosophy in Human Development, Learning, and Culture (PhD)
2024 Dr. Thulasi examined the role of protein degradation in the regulation of plant immunity. He identified a new regulatory mechanism mediated by the degradation of lipid biosynthetic enzymes. These findings deepen our understanding of the complex plant immune system. He hopes his discoveries aid in the future development of disease-resistant crops. Doctor of Philosophy in Botany (PhD)
2024 Dr. Albuquerque investigates topics in the field of the economics of crime and violence, focusing on Latin America and its recent history. The studies that compose his dissertation highlight the interplay between historical events, trust, state capacity, cultural diversity, and political structures in determining the levels of violence and crime. Doctor of Philosophy in Economics (PhD)
2024 Using artificial intelligence methods, Dr. Dirks developed machine learning models to unlock the information contained in spectral data. Demonstrated applications include grade estimation in mining and food quality assessment in agriculture. Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science (PhD)
2024 Dr. Diwan studied how and why audiences in India watch video streaming media. Her work shows the role of factors like language, geolocation, fandom etc. in digital viewership practices. By theorizing this set of audience behavior, she developed the concept of the interactive viewer to advance the understanding of digital audiences in Media Studies. Doctor of Philosophy in Asian Studies (PhD)
2024 Dr. Strich explored students' experiences with place at their school located in the Skagit Valley, Washington State. Students shared stories of meaningful places during walking and stationary interviews. Findings reveal place as a multi-dimensional inquiry, layered perspectives and understandings, and highly contextual to each person and place. Doctor of Philosophy in Curriculum Studies (PhD)
2024 Dr. Burge studied how relationality plays a role in the revitalization of Lingít, an Indigenous language spoken in the Pacific Northwest. Her work reflects on ideas of gender, identity, organizational structures and academia, and how the intersection of those themes speaks to the active fight to reclaim Lingít as a language, and as a community. Doctor of Philosophy in Anthropology (PhD)
2024 Dr. Kinney investigated how rapid environmental changes influence evolution in hybrid populations. Using threespine stickleback fish, she showcased the pivotal role of ecological selection in shaping hybrid populations, improving our understanding of the fragility of reproductive isolation. This work advances our insights into hybrid evolution. Doctor of Philosophy in Zoology (PhD)
2024 Dr. Saito investigated students learning mathematics in English at a Canadian school and in Japanese at a weekend Japanese school. He found that multilingual learners recognize the differences in curricula between the two countries. His study helps us to understand that there are curricular and linguistic differences in mathematics across countries. Doctor of Philosophy in Curriculum Studies (PhD)
2024 Dr. Tabrizian's research identified ROR2 as a key receptor promoting cellular plasticity in prostate cancer. Her findings suggest ROR2 as a therapeutic target to combat aggressive AR-independent tumor phenotypes. This could enhance responses to androgen receptor pathway inhibitors and prevent lineage plasticity. Doctor of Philosophy in Experimental Medicine (PhD)
2024 Dr. Schmidt designed and researched methods for efficiently tracking organ surfaces during surgery. He designed multiple algorithms to track tissue motion along with a dataset to evaluate performance for applications of tissue tracking. His research in efficient tracking will enable applications in surgical robotics, such as autonomy. Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical and Computer Engineering (PhD)