Student Stories

Dakota Cherry poses cheekily for a photo in front of an archway of plants, wearing an orange shirt and a brown vest and smiling.

Dakota Cherry Spotlight: Braiding Food Systems in Northern Ontario for Food Sovereignty, Security, and Climate Adaptation

“Food sovereignty is only possible if it takes place at the same time as political sovereignty of peoples.” (Nyéléni 2007: 5) 

Family Relations and Human Development Master's student Dakota Cherry believes that supporting communities in achieving food sovereignty, or the capacity to determine their own food futures and food security, is essential in building the food systems we need. Dakota shared some insights on her research and how she believes we can positively impact our food systems. 


What is your program and area of research? 

M Manjurul Islam sits at a table and smiles at the camera. He has medium-brown skin, short black hair, a goatee, glasses, and a blue long sleeve shirt.

M Manjurul Islam Spotlight: Investigating the Impact of Climate Change on Food Security

After working in the Bangladesh development sector for ten years, PhD student M Manjurul Islam is turning his focus to climate change adaptation. Through his research, Manjurul hopes to identify and develop sustainable practices that positively contribute to food security while mitigating the impacts of climate change.  

In recognition of this valuable research, Manjurul has been awarded a 2023 Arrell Scholarship. 

Headshot of Delane, a white woman with long blonde hair, wearing a beige shirt and dark turquoise blazer and is smiling at the camera.

Delane Linkiewich Spotlight: Tapping into the Value of Lived Experience

Although chronic pain is often an invisible illness, the impacts it can have on the lives of those living with it are profound.  

Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology PhD student Delane Linkiewich hopes to support adolescents living with chronic pain through peer support groups, where they can connect with others who have similar lived experiences to share knowledge and build relationships. 

Tzu-Yi poses in front of the University of Guelph Portico wearing her graduation robes.

Scholarship Enables Tzu-Yi to Return to Supportive Community at U of G

For Master of Applied Nutrition student Yang Tzu-Yi, the decision of whether to pursue her master's was a tough one. After completing the last year of her undergrad in Applied Human Nutrition online while living in China during the pandemic, Tzu-Yi got a job in China as a teacher. She debated whether it made sense to walk away from a stable job and take on the high cost of paying for continued education and moving back to Canada. 

A photo of Abigail dressed for Pride in a sequin tank top and mardi gras beads in front of a pride flag.

The Looking Glass: Loving Plainly

Abigail Mitchell (she/her) is a PhD student in Sociology at the University of Guelph and holds an MA in Criminology and Criminal Justice Policy from U of G. Her research focuses on domestic homicide, sexual femicide and internet-facilitated child sexual abuse.  

Laureen Owaga headshot. Laureen has her hair pulled back in braids and is wearing a red blazer with a necklace and dangling earrings.

Laureen Owaga Spotlight: Breaking the Silence Around Sexual Assault

Sexual assault may feel like a difficult and taboo topic to bring up in conversation, but second year Psychology and International Development PhD student Laureen Owaga wants to break the silence around sexual assault and intimate partner violence. 

Passionate about her work, Laureen hopes that her research looking at implementing a Canadian sexual assault prevention program in Kenya will not only help Kenyan women and girls, but also inform findings that can improve the program back in Canada.  

On the left, an aspirational Katie with some big dreams; on the right, also an aspirational Katie with some more meaningful dreams.

The Looking Glass: Growing as I Go

"What do you do when you give so much of yourself to one label or identity that you forget about all the others?"

While working her way through academia, Katie Pothier unintentionally learned more about herself than she ever expected. Katie discusses her experience of having a false idea of her identity, losing it all, and eventually discovering her true self through the pursuit of a master's degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice Policy.

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