Samantha McBeth, M.Sc. Northern Studies

Since graduating from the M.Sc. in Northern Studies, Samantha McBeth has split her time between Ottawa and Nunavut, working contracts for various federal agencies, such as DFO, Parks Canada, and the Canadian Museum of Nature, non-profits such as the Canadian Commission for UNESCO and the Mars Society, as well as field guiding in the polar regions for private companies.  She is currently a research assistant, field technician and safe operations coordinator at Canadian High Arctic Research Station (CHARS).  As a safe operations coordinator, she drafts policy on best practices at Polar Knowledge Canada for safe and respectful research procedures.  In the field, she assists on various terrestrial ecology and geomorphological projects in the area of Cambridge Bay.  Her current position came out of her Practicum in the Northern Studies program.

“Undertaking a M.Sc. in Northern Studies has allowed me to really understand the interdisciplinary reality of working and decision-making in the Canadian North in its intricacies.  I have gained a greater appreciation of the connectivity between people, landscapes and government, and the great difference of impact between local policy and directives from the South.  I love how everyday working for the North brings discussions, innovations and learning, how the solutions can be very creative, and how your colleagues and work partners are some of the kindest and generous people you’ll ever meet.” Samantha McBeth

Andrew Thompson, M.Sc. Northern Studies

Since graduating from the Northern Studies program in 2018, Andrew has been employed as a research assistant at ESSA Technologies Ltd.  Andrew’s work involves providing research, advice, knowledge synthesis to address complex natural resource management challenges, including improving the management of fisheries, promoting climate change adaptation, and supporting the implementation of co-management agreements.

“The Northern Studies program exposed me to a wide variety of perspectives about the challenges of resource management in Canada’s north.  My instructors challenged me to be critical about my own biases and helped me to think systematically and holistically about Canadian issues.  By letting me choose from a wide variety of courses, I was able to tailor the program to my own interests.”  Andrew Thompson

Chase Morrison, M.Sc. Northern Studies

Chase Morrison graduated from the M.Sc. program in 2018.  He is currently working for the Northern Affairs Organization (NAO) at Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada (CIRNAC) headquarters in Gatineau.  As a policy analyst, the majority of his work pertains to departmental scientific initiatives such as the Canadian High Arctic Research Station (CHARS) and the Northern Contaminants Program (NCP).  Chase’s current position came out of his Practicum in the Northern Studies program.

Michelle Olejarz, M.Sc. Northern Studies

Michelle Olejarz is working with the planning and sustainability department with the city of Whitehorse this summer.  Her practicum placement while completing her M.Sc. Northern Studies program was working as a permafrost researcher with the Northern Climate Exchange at the Yukon Research Centre.  She is about to begin her last year of school to become a geography teacher.

“I’ve always been passionate about geography and physical landscapes, and my experiences in the Northern Studies program and my associated work placement has contributed to my interest in pursuing work that has a Northern focus.” Michelle Olejarz

Michael Scarizzi, M.Sc. Northern Studies

Mike Scarizzi graduated from the M.Sc. program in 2018.  Currently he is working in Whitehorse for the Transportation Engineering Branch (TEB) of Yukon Highways and Public Works.  He started working for TEB during his Practicum in the Northern Studies Program.  Part of his work involves assessing the sustainability of the transportation network in the face of climate change.

“The opportunity to undertake the M.Sc. in Northern Studies allowed myself to explore the intricacies of decision making in Canada’s north on a variety of topics.  While the program is interdisciplinary by nature, the emphasis of studying and learning about the biophysical, policy and social environments of northern Canada drew me to this program as an educational opportunity.  I have gained a greater appreciation of the multi-faceted issues facing people and communities in Canada’s North, and the incorporation of the social and policy implications for northern Canada and its relation to climate change was an attractive component of this program for me.”  Michael Scarizzi