More than an awards presentation, the virtual Celebration of Community-Based Research facilitated by the Trent Community Research Centre (TCRC) and Careerspace provided an ideal platform for students to share important work they have been leading for local organizations.
On hand for the event, Dr. Michael Khan, provost and vice-president academic of Trent University, recognized what lies at the heart of these community projects – integration of cutting-edge research, excellence in teaching and innovative community impact.
“These projects provide valuable experiences for Trent students to gain critical thinking and life-long learning skills that prepare them for successful careers and to become engaged citizens,” stated Dr. Khan. “It is an opportunity that they will always cherish.”
Virtual celebration of real research
Through their projects, students from various programs including the Trent School of Environment, Forensic Science, and International Development Studies completed specific research projects for a wide variety of local community organizations, all coordinated through the TCRC.
“The Celebration of Research is our most anticipated event of the year,” shares Ryan Sisson, TCRC coordinator. “We applaud the efforts and contributions of our community hosts, research participants, faculty advisors, staff, and of course our student researchers.”
Whether speaking about their work in economics, the environment, healthcare, social services, the justice system, municipal planning and more, students were eager to share their applied, inter-disciplinary community-based work.
By navigating through interactive online chat rooms, audiences listened to student presentations and engaged with students about their work and poster displays.
Community & academic engagement for the future
“Often small organizations do not have the capacity or resources to do research,” said Karen Carr, executive director of Dalhousie Youth Support Services. “Students help fill that gap to support organizations that need the research for a variety of reasons. It also gives the students insight into community agencies and possibly opens up job opportunities for students.”
Erin Bennett-Rilling and Rachel Tsitomeneas won the Community Impact Award, recognizing their work with Peterborough Public Health to address vaccine hesitancy.
“Winning this award means that we have been able to use our education and learning process to benefit others as well as ourselves,” said Ms. Tsitomeneas, a fourth-year Sociology student specializing in Criminology & Socio-Legal Studies.
Creating space for a career and workplace-ready skills
“This fantastic experience really solidified my goal to teach Mathematics,” said Haley Gilchrist, a fourth-year Honours student in Mathematics who will be starting Trent’s Bachelor of Education program in the fall. “I would definitely recommend this type of project as there are millions of possibilities for topics, and students can really tailor their projects to their interests and future aspirations.”
As the Celebration of Community-Based Research was cancelled last year due to the pandemic, this year’s event also celebrated recipients from the 2019-2020 academic year.
Congratulations to all of the winners!
Learn more about experiential learning opportunities at Trent University.
Innovative Presentation: ORAL PRESENTATION
Sponsor: County of Peterborough
- 2020-2021: Julie Potapinski, Forensic Science, “Peterborough Indigenous Peoples' Court - Best Practices and Evaluative Criteria”, Nathan Baker Law
- 2019-2020: Adam Call, Business Administration, “The Economic Impact of International Students on Peterborough's Local Economy”, Workforce Development Board
Innovative Presentation: POSTER PRESENTATION
Sponsor: Human Services and Justice Coordinating Committee.
- 2020-2021: Tia Bankosky, Indigenous Environmental Studies & Sciences, “Ayalik Fund - Identifying Best Practices in Program Evaluation”, Ayalik Fund
- 2019-2020: Vira Golender, Nursing, “Knowledge Translation of Precarious Employment Research: Recommendations for Implementation”, Precarious Employment Research Initiative (PERI)
Provost Award for Academic Achievement in a Community Setting
Sponsor: Trent University Office of the Provost & Vice-President, Academic Dr. Michael Khan
- 2020-2021: Duc 'Felix' Tran and Emmanuel Pinto, International Development Studies, “Economic Impact of Financial Institution Closures to Rural Communities”, Peterborough and the Kawarthas Economic Development
- 2019-2020: Nicolas Diaz Kloch, Master of Bioenvironmental Monitoring & Assessment, M.BEMA, “The Causeway: The Road to Economic Prosperity”, County of Peterborough
Community Impact Award
Sponsors: CUPE Local 3908 and OPSEU Local 365
- 2020-2021 Winner: Rachel Tsitomeneas and Erin Bennett-Rilling, Sociology “COVID-19 vaccination readiness in the Peterborough Region”, Peterborough Public Health
- 2019-2020: Emma Kaszecki, Forensic Science “Viability for Tiny Home Community in Peterborough as a Means of Transitional Housing”, Human Services and Justice Coordinating Committee