Graduate Student Profiles

PhD


Mohammed Abdulai

PhD Student
Supervisor: Dr. Hongming Cheng

Email address: maa277@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Olufemi Ajiboye

Supervisor: Dr. John Hansen

Email address: ofa391@mail.usask.ca

 

Joseph Asomah

PhD Candidate
Supervisor: Dr. Hongming Cheng

Email address: jya759@mail.usask.ca

I was born and raised in a small town called Japekrom, popularly known as Japstown, in the Brong Ahafo region of Ghana. Prior to coming to Canada in 2013, I was working with Ghana Education Service in Bechum. I hold a Bachelor of Arts degree with first class honours in Political Science and Sociology from the University of Ghana. I also hold thesis-based MA degree in Sociology from the University of Manitoba, Winnipeg.

My research interests focus generally on human rights and dignity, policing, anti-corruption movements, social justice and policy, white collar crime, and governance and accountability. Personal and scholarly motivations have served as a catalyst for my concentration on these areas of academic interest. I have presented papers at conferences and have also published in reputable peer-reviewed Canadian and international journals. Some of my recent publications include 'The Importance of Social Activisim to a Fuller  Concept of Law', published by Western Journal of Legal Studies in 2015, and 'Cultural Rights versus Human Rights: A Critical Analysis of the Trokosi Practice in Ghana and the Role of Civil Society', published by African Human Rights Law Journal in 2015.

My PhD research focuses on investigating anti-corruption reforms and struggles in developing democracies, using the case of Ghana. My long-term aim is to contribute to developing this neglected area of inquiry on political corruption, which is a sub-field in white collar crime. I have come to realize through experience and empirical evidence that the fundamental problem in sub-Sahara Africa is not about lack of human and material resources, but problems of governance and leadership. I believe that it is high time the peoples of Africa begin to demand political accountability. As Ittner (2009, p.150) argues, "It is vain to hope that a government will become accountable all by itself through some kind of 'moral obligation'. In the long term, this can only be achieved by pressure from its citizens." This insightful reality explains my commitment to pressing for responsible and responsive governance system that meets the needs and aspirations of its people. Against this backdrop, one of my primary goals is to produce critical knowledge that will contribute to progressive social movements for political and legal change, social justice, in the African context in particular.

Wei (Rose) Chen

PhD Student
Supervisor: Dr. Li Zong

Email address: wec171@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Daniel DeLury

PhD Student
Supervisor: Dr. Harley Dickinson

Email address: daniel.delury@usask.ca

About me:

Yuchen (Nina) Gao

PhD Student
Supervisor: Dr. Terry Wotherspoon

Email address: yuchen.gao@usask.ca

My hometown is Daqing, China. I am a quiet person who enjoys travelling, listening to people's stories, reading, volunteering, and playing tennis.

My research topic is medication education. I am fascinated by the hidden curriculum in medical education and medical students' identity development. I am also interested in topics related to sociology of education and medical sociology.

Jason Jean

PhD Candidate
Supervisor: Dr. Terry Wotherspoon

Email address: jaj609@mail.usask.ca

I was raised in Lloydminster (on the Saskatchewan side of the border) but have lived in Saskatoon for most of my adult life. I consider myself both a labourer and an academic. In addition to attending university, I have worked in lumberyards and drywall delivery companies continuously since the age of 14. I have my class 1A licence and have driven forklifts and other large construction equipment since before I could legally drive.

At present I reside in Chengdu, Sichuan, China with my wife Yixi Lu, herself a sociologist from the University of Saskatchewan. My Mandarin is presently a work-in-progress but I love living in China and exploring historical sites. I have a wide range of interests such as: international politics, martial arts, media studies, Chinese and Canadian history, theology, religious studies, science studies, fundamentalism, and the sociology/history of science and religion.

My PhD studies focuses on the scientific, religious, educational, and political engagement of small-scale creationist groups in Saskatchewan and Alberta which have adopted antievolutionist positions. Specifically, how they conceptualize science and scientific activity, with a focus upon biological evolution. This form of analysis is missing within the present literature on antievolutionalism, which focuses more on influential historical figures and larger organizations such as Answers in Genesis or the Institute for Creation Research (which are much more dogmatic and systematized). Over time, I hope that scientists and the general population will learn to differentiate between scientific knowledge and the different theological and philosophical interpretations of that knowledge, which has often evoked fundamentalist responses from both religious and scientiific organizations.

Yiyan Li

PhD Candidate
Supervisor: Dr. Terry Wotherspoon

Email address: yil408@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Rezvan Ostadali

PhD Student
Supervisor: Dr. Carolyn Brooks

Email address: rezvan.ostadali@usask.ca

About me:

Siyu Ru

PhD Student
Supervisor: Dr. Colleen Dell 

Email address: sir106@mail.usask.ca

I was born and raised in Xi'an China. I first came to the University of Saskatchewan in 2014 through the 1+1 joint MA program between University of Saskatchewan and Xi'an Jiaotong University. After convocation, I decided to continue to study at the University of Saskatchewan as a PhD student.

My research interests include substance abuse, addication, and animal-human bonds.

Srijita Sarkar

PhD Student
Supervisor: Dr. Kara Somerville

Email address: srs298@mail.usask.ca

About me:

A. Zita Seshie

PhD Candidate
Supervisor: Dr. Patience Elabor-Idemudia

Email address: azs896@mail.usask.ca

I am from Ghana, West Africa. I graduated with first class honours in Sociology and Theatre Arts at the University of Ghana. I completed my Master's degree in Social Justice and Equity Studies (SJES) at Brock University, Canada, because I have a great passion for issues of social justice. My current research is in the area of gender and educational policy in Ghana, West Africa. My commitment to education and equity for girls and women in Africa influenced my decision to start an initiative called the "One-Change project". This project is to build on the existing body of knowledge on girls' education in sub-Sahara Africa, provide school supplies for children, especially girls in rural communities in Ghana through fundraising; and share the stories of girls as they strive to pursue an education in Ghana.

S. Asad Shah, MBA, PhD

Supervisor: Dr. Patience Elabor-Idemudia

Email address: sys679@mail.usask.ca

Successfully defended Dec 22, 2017

I was born in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, and spent most of my life in my native city. I earned my Bachelor's degree in Journalism and then got Master degrees in Business Administration and International Relations. I am now pursuing my Doctoral degree in Sociology at the University of Saskatchewan, where I am in the final phase of my PhD. My research focuses on the social construction of Muslim minority groups in Canada. I am conducting critical discourse analysis of newspapers and non-academic topic areas such as leadership, digital media marketing, SPSS, NVivo, EndNote, and MS Office applications.

I was awarded gold medal for academic excellence in my Master degree in International Relations from Iqra University Islamabad, Pakistan in 2009-10. At the U of S, I received a Teacher Scholar Doctoral Fellowship and taught a research methodology course in 2016-17.

I have knowledge capital and experience in various social and corporate sectors. I have worked with several national and multinational organizations in Pakistan, UK, UAE, and Canada. I have been working as an IT consultant, social worker, researcher, business development and marketing advisor, and also worked as a trainer with different renowned organizations. I believe in and promote the right model of global social harmony throughout the whole social spectrum, like living and doing business with values, thereby contributing to the wellbeing of the society at large. I endeavour to change the perceptions by doing the right things in society and in business, thus contributing to bringing a positive change in society.

Hakeem Shokoya

PhD Candidate
Supervisor: Dr. Elizabeth Quinlan

Email address: hos013@mail.usask.ca

I was born and raised in Lagos, Nigeria. I completed my Bachelors and Master's degrees at the prestigious University of Lagos, Akoka, Nigeria in 1991 and 1996 respectively, where I was the best student in the Sociology graduating class of 1991. I received an award and cash prize. I completed and obtained the Human Resources Management Certifcate at Mount Royal University in June 2014 and the Graduate Professional Sklills Certificate at University of Saskatchewan in May 2016. I have also had the priviilege of attending Mitacs training in Project Management I & II and the Instructional Skills Workshop at Gwenna Moss Centre for Teaching and Learning. I have some academic publishing to my credit.

My work experience spans two decades in the not-for-profit, business and government sectors where I used my education, skills and networks to impact positively on people, situations, and organizations. I taught Sociology for three years at Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos and for over seven years at University of Lagos, Akoka, Nigeria before relocating to Canada in 2013. I taught Sociology as contract faculty for a year at Mount Royal University, Calgary, Canada before enrolling for the doctoral program in Sociology at the Universiy of Saskatchewan. 

Areas of my academic interest and research include: industrial sociology, workplace relations, state and union issues, economic sociology and development studies. My doctoral research is on "The State and Workers' Rights in Alberta and Saskatchewan: An Institutional and Comparative Study of Municipal Employees." In this study, I am examining issues relating to collective bargaining, dispute and conflict resolution, policy and legal frameworks, and how these affect temporary employees in municipal government.

Mark Stobbe

PhD Candidate
Supervisor: Dr. Harley Dickinson

Email address: mjs665@mail.usask.ca

I was raised in the northern Saskatchewan mining town of Uranium City. Prior to returning to University to pursue graduate studies, I worked as a hard-rock miner, political organizer, government communications official, and administrator for an arts-sector community based organization. I have two sons in University, and my goal is to graduate before they do.

My dissertation examines the justice policies of the federal government led by the Hon. Stephen Harper, PC. It poses the question: "Was Stephen Harper really tough on crime?". I've also completed several side projects including an analysis of Canada's voluntary international philanthropic activities conducted through the Social Sciences Research Laboratory for the Hudson Institute and an examination of the evolution of Canadian sociology as expressed by papers presented at the conferences of the Canadian Sociological Association.  Major publications include the Lessons from Remand and co-editing of Devine Rule in Saskatchewan: A Decade of Hope and Hardship.

I am working as a Sociology instructor at Keyano College in Fort McMurray, Alberta.

Wesam Younis

PhD Candidate
Co-supervisors: Dr. Daniel Béland, Dr. Patience Elabor-Idemudia

Email address: wmy851@mail.usask.ca

I am an Egyptian Sociologist, born and raised in Cairo. As a child, I travelled with my parents all over the world.

The following is a brief description of my research areas. I worked in three different areas in Sociology: first, urban sociology, this is the study of my MA thesis at The American University in Cairo, which focuses on the new residential gated compounds on the outskirts of Greater Cairo as one form of urban segregation. Second, sociology of development, I worked in this area when I worked in the Egyptian government. I intiated a research project which sought to compare between two different types of micro-credit projects. Third, sociology of higher education, science policy, and sociology of organizations. This is my current area as a Sociology PhD candidate at the University of Saskatchewan. The main concern of my PhD research project is to understand how the Global Institute for Food Security was created. and how the Crop Development Centre was created, and to identify the similarities and differences between the factors, motivations, and social processes that led to the creation of each of them. I have submitted a first draft of my thesis and currently working on the revisions.

In terms of my activities beyond work, I represented the U of S Graduate Student Association in a Vice-Dean Search Committee and was very involved in the GSA meetings and many GSA activities for one year.

During the last five years, several political events strengthened my political consciousness and provided me a new empirical perspective to understand political sociology and conflict theory.

I am an athlete, a reader, and a writer. I read sociology, history, philosophy, and literature. My reading in sociology is broad and not restricted to a specific area. I am very interested in Weber, Habermas, communicative action theory, Naguib Mahfouz (an Egyptian novelist who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1988), the Egyptian cinema, and I have broad knowledge of existentialism. 

MA

Adil Afzal

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Carolyn Brooks

Email address: asa225@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Alhassan Alhassan

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Michael Gertler

Email address: aya891@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Vita Andersone

MA Student
Co-supervisors: Dr. Michael Gertler, Dr. Carl Gutwin

Email address: via861@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Anita Asare

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Laura Wright

Email address: ana173@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Kirby Brigden

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Elizabeth Quinlan

Email address: kmb250@mail.usask.ca

I was born and raised on a small farm outside of Medora, Manitoba. After graduating high school in Deloraine, MB, I moved to Saskatoon for university. In 2016, I graduated with an honours degree in Sociology with a minor in Political Studies. During this time I was also involved with a variety of extracurricular activities, such as volunteering as a peer mentor, playing rec sports, and bartending part-time.

Now a Masters student, I am researching campus response to sexual violence. In particular, I am looking at universities that have produced a sexual assault-specific policy to determine if the creation of such policies meets survivors' needs or is simply a way of fulfilling legislative requirements.

As an undergraduate, I was president of the Sociology Undergraduate Student Association (SUSA), and I now play an active role on the Sociology Graduate Student Association (SGSA).

When not doing work, I most enjoy hanging out with friends, cooking/baking, or drinking tea while working on my latest cross-stitch pattern.

Courtney Carlberg

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Terry Wotherspoon

Email address: clc270@mail.usask.ca

I was born and raised in Saskatoon, SK. Growing up I was involved with Girl Guides of Canada, where I achieved the rank Ranger. One day I would love to go back and become a leader in the Girl Guide's community. At the age of three I discovered my love for dance, including tap, jazz, ballet, lyrical, and pointe. The passion for dance contiues to this day as I regularly attend ballet classes and I am currently practicing ballroom dance at the University of Saskatchewan.

In 2015 I graduated from the Unviersity of Saskatchewan with Honours in Sociology and I started my Master's degree. The focus of my research is Saskatchewan's early learning and child care (ELCC) policies, specifically the development of Saskatchewan's regulated child care. My area of interest includes social policy, family, and women and gender issues. 

Dalbir Dolla

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Sarah Knudson

Email address: dad959@mail.usask.ca

Proposed Thesis Topic: Caste, class, and views toward marriage among two Sikh generations in Greater Vancouver, Canada.

This qualitative project focuses on how the Sikh religion influences perceptions of marriage in relation to the caste system by exploring attitudes toward marriage among a sample of married and unmarried people across two generations.  The central research question is: Why does caste still matter in modern times and to the Sikhs, particularily those in the diaspora? The study thus inquires about feelings about marraige as they connect to caste.

I hypothesize that people who are less educated and older are more likely to place a higher importance on caste in general and in relation to marriage than people who are more educated and younger.  An inductive process allowed for exploration of this hypothosis. Twenty one-on-one semi-structured interviews were conducted of Canadian-born Sikh children (aged 22-30) and Sikh immigrant parents (with children aged 22-30) in the lower mainland of British Columbia. The interviews were used to obtain thoughts, opinions, and stories from the respondents. Based on these interviews, two themes emerged: (1) the way Sikhism is practiced amd interpreted vis-a-vis marriage differs from the teachings of the religion; (2) caste is not always taught, but rather reveals itself as an organizing framework that can become engrained through socialization. This study will contribute to knowledge development at the intersection of family, culture, and diaspora studies, and shed light on the struggles or conflicts that Canadian-born Sikh children may face as they contemplate marriage.

Chanda Hetzel

MA Student
Co-supervisors: Dr. Jennifer Poudrier, Dr. Gary Groot

Email address: cch163@mail.usask.ca

I grew up on a small farm near Lake Lenore, SK and moved to Saskatoon shortly after high school to work and then to continue my education. In 2015 I convocated with a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Sociology from the University of Saskatchewan. I have also worked at the Social Science Research Laboratories (SSRL) for three years where I was promoted to Assistant Manager in the Survey Group Analysis Laboratory. At the SSRL I was trained on the most up-to-date qualitative and quantitative computer software programs such as WinCati, Qualtrics, SPSS, and NVivo. 

I had the pleasure to work as a research assistant with many professors in the Sociology Department including: Dr. Elizabeth Quinlan, focusing on health research, bullying in the workplace, and sexual assault; Dr. John Hansen, focusing on addictions recovery through arts based programs like Saskatoon Community Youth Arts Programming (SCYAP); and Dr. Laura Wright, focusing on the cohabitation patterns of young and emerging adults in Canada and the United States.

I have been a teaching assistant for Dr. Tracey Carr, Department of Psychology, in her 2015-16 classes, Abnormal Psychology and Personality. I have been a teaching assistant for Dr. Carolyn Brooks, Department of Sociology, in her 2016-17 classes, Intro to Criminology.

I focus my research on Indigenous health where I have become part of a research team focusing on the decision-making process around breast cancer treatment for Indigenous women. I have Co-supervisors for my Master's thesis, Dr. Gary Groot, Community Health and Epidemiology and Dr. Jennifer Poudrier, Sociology.

I very much enjoy adventure and challenges. In 2014 I worked at a fly-in fishing camp at Slave Lake in the NorthWest Territories at Brabant Lodge. The year before I participated in Intercordia Canada where I lived in Peguche, Ecuador, for eight weeks where I stayed with a host family, learned some Spanish and volunteered at the local daycare.

I look forward to a career in community-based research and integrating myself into different cultural experiences, broadening my personal understanding of health and its relation to worldview as well as its connection to environmental, social, and political factors.

Jingjing Huang

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Hongming Cheng

Email address: jih129@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Mary Mansa

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Julie Kaye

Email address: mam356@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Rose McEwan

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Sarah Knudson

Email address: ram787@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Yi Qin

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Li Zong

Email address: yiq157@mail.usask.ca

About me:

Samuel Schultz

MA Student
Supervisor: Dr. Jennifer Poudrier

Email address: sps398@mail.usask.ca

I hail from the sprawling metropolis that is Saskatoon (or the Providence of the Prairies), Saskatchewan. The sum totality of my lived experience has taken place within the parameters of this particular life-world (I really ought to get out more). How might I describe this place? In short, an infinite skyline and consequentially terminate horizons, which is to say there is an apparent absence of mountains of which to buttress my madness. Perhaps it's true what they say: a mere moment may induce insanity, however it takes a life-world to be truly mad.

My immediate family constellation consist of a mother, father, brother, dog, cat, and a tenacious turtle. My mother is an embodiment of compassion par excellence, while my father personifies humility in form and substance. I am a synthesis of these two truths (and many, many more). May we say that an individual is a mere by-product of love? In a word, I am proud to be my parent's son.

My research currently focuses (if it wasn't dreadfully apparent in the previous illusions) on the life and times of H.P. Lovecraft. I hope to examine his historical experiences of a world in crisis (1890-1937), with the desire to understand our contemporary world in crisis (Trump 2017, dear old gods). Moreover, due to the presence of the Pitrim Sorokin archives at the University of Saskatchewan, I wish to explore potential linkages and commonalities between Lovecraft's work as an amateur writer and Sorokin as a professional sociologist. Are there synchromatic similarities contained in Lovecraft's Cthulhu Cycles and Sorokin's Cultural Cycles?

A closing suggestion: Do as Cthulhu does and dream forever - both Lovecraft and Sorokin would agree.