Lily Ziyue Zhang
Lily Ziyue Zhang is a PhD student at the Department of Geography, Geomatics and Environment, University of Toronto Mississauga. She is also completing a collaborative specialization in Global Health (UoT Global Scholar) through the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. Lily is an early career scholar in the subfields of Health and Urban Geography. She has received a research award from the Centre for Urban Environments and paper presentation award from the Canadian Association of Geographers (GIScience) for her PhD research.
Previously, Lily was a part of a research team investigating Geospatial patterns of HIV antiretroviral therapy treatment facility use, work location, and viral suppression in Kampala, Uganda, at the Joint Clinical Research Centre (JCRC).
Lily developed many valuable insights into international research projects while she prepared proposals and survey instruments, collected interview and survey data, conducted GIS data analysis, and wrote reports. Also, she successfully led two HIV outreach clinics informed by their study and in partnership with the JCRC staff. Lily co-authored three manuscripts (two currently published) and received a Queen Elizabeth II Scholarship while completing her Master of Management of Applied Science, specialization in Global Health Systems, at the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry.
Shervin Ghaem-Maghami is a PhD candidate in Planning the Department of Geography and Planning at the University of Toronto. He holds a Bachelor of Environmental Studies in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Waterloo and Master of Public Administration from Queen’s University.
His prior professional experience includes positions in the Government of Ontario—including at the Ministry of the Environment, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, and the Ministry of Transportation—as well as roles in local government and the private and non-profit sectors. Shervin is a recipient of the SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship and the Ontario Graduate Scholarship.
He has also been awarded the Black, Indigenous, and Racialized Graduate Research Fellowship from the University of Toronto Mississauga, Graduate Fellowships from the Institute in Municipal Finance and Governance and the School of Cities, and the Research Fund Award from the Centre for Urban Environments.
You can watch his recent seminar, hosted by the Institute in Municipal Finance and Governance and entitled “A New Engagement: Incorporating Newcomers into GTA Planning Processes”, here: https://youtu.be/XbTcPcMckuw
Irenius Konkor is a PhD candidate in Human Geography with specialization in Health Geography in the Department of Geography, Geomatics and Environment at the University of Toronto Mississauga.
Irenius obtained his undergraduate degree from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Department of Geography and Rural Development in Ghana and went on to complete a master’s degree in Health Geography at the University of Western Ontario, Canada. Irenius’ broader research interests include transport and health, HIV/AIDS, and non-communicable disease in low- and middle-income countries.
His master’s thesis examined HIV vulnerabilities among heterosexual African, Caribbean, and Black men in Ontario, Canada. His current research and PhD thesis focuses on understanding the connections between neighborhoods and non-communicable disease in Ghana, Africa. The overarching goal of his research interest is to impact health policy.
Minal Waqar is an upcoming researcher in the field of public health and health geography. She is a recent graduate from the University of Toronto, where she focused on diabetic South Asian immigrants in Canada for her Master’s research project. Minal also completed her Honours Bachelors at the University of Toronto Mississauga, with a double major in Geography and Environmental Management.
Her interest in field of health first developed during her internship with Diabetes Canada in her undergraduate studies, which compelled her to reflect on health-related issues such as health inequities, access to health services, and disparities that exist both in terms of chronic diseases and infectious diseases.
This interest evolved further during her graduate research work in the field of health geography, particularly relating to determinants of health, utilization of health services and resources, and population health outcomes.
Minal has been the recipient of numerous academic awards and scholarships during her undergraduate and graduate studies, including the highly competitive Joseph Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship (SSHRC) for her Master’s research. Currently, she is planning on pursuing a PhD in Public Health / Epidemiology, where she hopes to apply herself to public health-related research endeavours.
Jayati Khattar completed her undergraduate degree from the University of Toronto Mississauga in 2020. In her first project with Dr. Kuuire, she conducted a scoping review to examine the barriers that prevent immigrants from accessing mental health services.
She completed her undergraduate thesis under the supervision of Dr. Kuuire, focusing on how cross-border ties influenced the mental health of Eritrean immigrants living in the Greater Toronto Area. She graduated with her Master of Public Health from McMaster University in 2022.
For her Master’s thesis, she focused on how the social determinants of health were associated with unmet healthcare needs during the COVID-19 pandemic using data from the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging.
Sanewal Singh is a current researcher in the field of public health with a focus on epidemiological work. Currently, Sanewal Singh is a PhD student in Public Health and Health Systems at the University of Waterloo, and is specializing in epidemiology and biostatistics.
He recently completed his master’s degree with Dr. Vincent Kuuire at the University of Toronto, where he focused on understanding the ongoing use of traditional medicine in Ghana. Sanewal also completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Toronto, and received an Honours Bachelors of Science degree in psychology and politics.
He found his fascination in global and geographical health during his undergraduate studies, and took on an independent research project with Dr. Kuuire. During this project, Sanewal examined the impact of social welfare programs in Ghana (such as The Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty) on health care access among elderly individuals residing in rural neighborhoods. This project, in addition to various health-related courses, have further evolved Sanewal’s passion for understanding health determinants, disparities, as well as outcomes, and ultimately led him to pursue further education in this field.
Currently, Sanewal is working on various projects within the field of health and health care. Some of his projects include understanding the determinants of unsolicited drug use among Canadian university students, examining the factors that predict suicide ideation in Canadian university students, and determining the usefulness of Andersen’s Model for understanding the ongoing use of traditional medicine in Ghana.
I study exposure to air pollution, understanding how much pollution people breathe, and how to reduce those exposures. My specific areas of focus are Air pollution impacts of urban form, indoor air pollution, and health impacts, noise pollution, bioaerosol, and air quality and heatwaves.
My commitment to a scientific career has driven me to the nascent field of air quality research in sub-Saharan Africa, which can potentially transform the lives of many millions of people. Current project investigates how schoolchildren are exposed to indoor and outdoor air pollution in Rwanda and Canada, and determines if air pollution education can influence children’s behaviour in Rwanda, and reduce their risk to transportation-related air pollution.
I obtained a PhD in Health and Environmental Science at the Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand and an MSc in Air Pollution Management and Control from the University of Birmingham in the UK.