Graduate Students

Bridget Alichie

Doctor of Philosophy – Sociology

Supervisor: Professor Temitope Oriola

Broad research Focus: Criminology and Socio-Legal Studies

My PhD dissertation is focused on the Nigerian #ChurchToo movement against Clergy-Perpetrated Sexual Abuses (CPSA) in Pentecostal churches. My work specifically explores sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV), social movements, religion, and new media (online) engagements

Nazmul Arefin

Nazmul is a doctoral student in the Department of Sociology, University of Alberta. As a visionary researcher from Bangladesh, he has worked for/with prominent national and international organizations like GIZ, Asia Foundation, ICDD, Centre for Genocide Studies (CGS), Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime Unit of Bangladesh, Police Headquarters, Bangladesh Mahila Parishad, and so on. He has also received a fellowship from the University of Kassel in Germany as a Visiting scientist. His research interests include terrorism and radicalization studies, global south criminology, identity politics, right wing populism, social justice, Islamophobia, and Frantz Fanon.

Celine Beaulieu

Research Interests: Criminology, policing, homelessness, surveillance studies 

Celine is a PhD student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. Her masters’ thesis critically examines police officers’ perceptions of homeless encampments and their interactions with encampment residents. 

Nader Chehayeb

Supervisor: Dr. Marta-Marika Urbanik

Nader is an MA student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. His research interests include policing and punishment, police-citizen interactions, and people experiencing houselessness. Through his research and course work, Nader hopes to better understand the experiences of various marginalized groups. Nader hopes to then apply such knowledge to the legal field as he plans to pursue law school after completing his MA. 

Samantha Cima

Research Interests: Sexual violence; intimate partner violence; gender and sexuality; victimology; male survivors of sexual or intimate partner violence; social support and networks; rape myths and victim blaming. 

Samantha is a PhD student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta.

Bilguundari Enkhtugs

Research Interests: digital criminology, online justice, cyber-victimization; community supervision, probation, and punishment


Alexandra Hélène Gagnon

Supervisor: Dr. Sandra Bucerius 

Alexandra Hélène Gagnon is a Masters student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. She obtained her Hons. B.A. in Sociology at MacEwan University and has experience using both qualitative and quantitative methods. Her research interests include deviance, reintegration, public criminology, and the sociology of law. Her Master's Capstone project will examine how research findings of contentious issues can be disseminated to the general public. 

Emily R. Gerbrandt

Emily R. Gerbrandt (She/They) is an anti-violence activist, Survivor, and Ph.D. Candidate in Sociology. Their research engages intersectional feminist theory and anti-carceral perspectives to explore the connections between gendered violence, punishment, and the state. Her research has also explored the #MeToo Movement and the role of digital feminist activism in the creation of extra-legal justice mechanisms by sexualized violence Survivors. Her dissertation, “Surviving the Shadow Pandemic” explores the connections between pandemics and gendered violence, and investigates how COVID-19 management policies on university campuses can exacerbate institutional conditions that give rise to sexualized and gendered violence as well as disadvantage students-Survivors seeking sexual education, resources, justice, and support. Their co-authored work on violence amongst other adults in residential care facilities has been published in the Journal of Gerontological Social Work (2019), and the Canadian Review of Sociology (2022).

Lorielle Giffin

Lorielle Giffin is a PhD student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. She obtained her BA in Criminology and her MA in Criminology and Social Justice from Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University). She has experience conducting research with incarcerated people, the loved ones of incarcerated people, and arrested individuals within 24 hours of their arrest. Her research interests are in the areas of crimmigration, prison and imprisonment, substance use and drug policy, and harm reduction. Using both ethnography and qualitative interviews, her dissertation will explore perceptions and experiences of harm reduction in two Canadian cities (Halifax and Edmonton) from the perspective of various stakeholders.

Supervisor: Dr. Sandra Bucerius

Katherine Hancock

Katherine Hancock is a PhD candidate in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. She obtained her HBSc in Psychology and Criminology and her MA in Criminology from the University of Toronto. Katherine has experience using both qualitative and quantitative research methods. Her doctoral research considers the cultural structures of the police by examining the perspectives and experiences of the civilian and sworn membership of a police service during a period of unsettlement, driven by (perceived?) heightened public scrutiny, a global pandemic, and changes in leadership. In part, this work explores how cultural factors impact the manner in which police service members interpret their roles and identity, and, potentially, how cultural factors relate to individual and group behaviour within the institution of policing. Katherine currently works in research and development with a police service and is a former criminal intelligence analyst.

Research interests: policing, institutional complexity, culture, immigration, citizenship, victimization

Prof-Collins Ifeonu

Prof-Collins Ifeonu is a Doctoral Candidate at the University of Alberta, in the Department of Sociology. His doctoral thesis explores the impact of higher education’s internationalization on Black student politics, with a particular focus on how Black international students relate to race-conscious movements/organizing in Alberta, Canada. His other research interests include immigration, precarious legality, psychological contracts and social exchanges.

Ping Lam Ip

I am a PhD student in sociology at the University of Alberta (UofA). I received my M.Phil. and B.S.Sc. in sociology from Hong Kong Baptist University. My research interests include youth, delinquency, social construction, social control, and critical social theories. Specifically, I seek to trace the historical emergence and transformation of the discourse of “youth Internet addiction” in Hong Kong. I pay particular attention to the role of the Hong Kong government, the social service sector, social sciences, and mass media in the production and circulation of “scientific truth" about “youth Internet addiction” that had fostered increasing social control of young people. Prior to joining the UofA, I had worked as a research assistant at multiple top-ranking institutions, such as City University of Hong Kong and Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. I have an ample amount of experience in conducting qualitative, quantitative, mixed-methods, and theoretically-driven critical research. Some of the notable projects I worked on: (1) A Three-Year Longitudinal Study on Rehabilitated Offenders in Hong Kong, (2) Impact Assessment of HSBC Future Skills Development Project, (3) Social and Political Engagement among University Students in Hong Kong, and (4) Anti-Mainland Protests in Hong Kong: A Social Movement Analysis.

Ashley Kohl

Twitter: @admkohl
Research Gate

Ashley Kohl is a PhD candidate and Joseph-Armand Bombardier scholar in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. Her research interests include environmental sociology, social movements, critical criminology, and prisons. Ashley is a senior researcher and the head quantitative research analyst for the University of Alberta Prison Project. Her MA thesis examined how protective custody classification affects how incarcerated men relate to each other and negotiate their own sense of identity within the larger inmate hierarchy. She is currently working on her dissertation examining environmental politics in Alberta.

Victoria Lopatka

Supervisor: Dr. Marta-Marika Urbanik

Victoria is a Master's student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. She obtained her BA in Criminology and Communication at Simon Fraser University in BC. Her research interests include drug policy, people who use drugs (PWUD), drug decriminalization, and the ongoing overdose crisis. Her previous work focuses on the perceived impact the COVID-19 pandemic had on PWUD in BC

Natasha Martino

Natasha Martino is a PhD student in the department of Sociology at McMaster University. Her research interests focus broadly around homelessness, policing, third-party policing, marginalization, social exclusion/inclusion, and more recently, the criminal justice system and reintegration. She has also engaged in research related to community safety and crime prevention. Natasha obtained her Master of Arts in Criminology from Wilfrid Laurier University, and her Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Sociology and Philosophy from Queen’s University. Her exploratory MA research entitled “Loose Coupling, Burden Shuffling, and Pervasive Penality: The Role of Bylaw Enforcement in Managing Homelessness” examined the role of bylaw enforcement and municipal ordinances in the social control and management of homelessness and homeless encampments across Ontario

Alysha McDonald

My research focuses on the carceral and reintegrative experiences of people convicted of sexual offences in Canada. I examine the lived experiences of people convicted of sexual offences as they transition from prison to the free world to understand how they negotiate and manage reintegrative tasks and perceptions of self with the added barriers of the sex offender label. Through this lens, I explore how reintegration may be understood as a continuum of incarceration and integrated into discourses of prisons, punishment, and identity.

Research interests: incarceration, reintegration, punishment, identity, the carceral continuum

Rebekah McNeilly

Supervisors: Dr. Sandra Bucerius & Dr. Luca Berardi"

 Research Interests: My dissertation work focuses on the experiences of youth straddling the foster care and youth justice systems. I inquire into their self-described experiences of victimization, day-to-day life, and places of respite. Additionally, I am a research assistant on the University of Alberta Prison Project looking at the experiences of incarceration in Canadian prisons, post-prison re-entry and re-entry programs. I also work with various not-for-profits including the Salvation Army inquiring into recidivism among their post-incarceration service users."

Gabriel H. Pratico

Gabriel is a master’s student in the Sociology department at the University of Alberta. He obtained his Honours Bachelor of Arts in Criminology at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia. His research interests include narrative criminology, discourses, far-right ethno-nationalist movements, communities, and terrorists, as well as far-right extremist populist movements. Pursuant to this, his honours thesis, “Written in Blood & Glass: Terrorist Narratives, e-Communities, and Mass Media Discursive Strategies and Themes”, focused on examining the narratives and discourses contained within the manifestos of two extremist mass killers, the discussion spaces of their ideological peers, and mass media reporting on their actions. Besides the University of Alberta and Simon Fraser University, he has also studied at Okanagan College in British Columbia and the University of Oslo in Norway.

Brittney Schwehr

Brittney is a PhD student in the department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. She received her MA in Criminology and Social Justice from Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University). Brittney has participated in qualitative research on policing and surveillance. Her other research interests include hate crimes and reintegration.

Ivan Shmatko

Ivan Shmatko is a PhD student in the Department of Sociology, University of Alberta. His PhD project investigates changes that happened in order accomplishment practices in the Ukrainian Armed Forces after the full-scale invasion of Ukraine and the ensuing mass mobilization. His previous research focused on the Ukrainian police, exploring their imaginary work, which led to a publication in the British Journal of Criminology (Shmatko 2022). He is also a co-founder of the Ukrainian Centre for Law and Crime Research. As part of the team of scholars from the Centre, Shmatko has been involved in numerous research projects on security, law, and crime in Ukraine. Shmatko is currently involved in a qualitative project he started with his colleagues from the centre on Ukrainian judges called “Ukrainian judge: Vocation, Profession, Daily Life”.

Emily Stewart

Emily is a PhD student in the department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. She received her MA in Sociology from Queen’s University where she critically explored how varying levels of supervision and conditions of release on bail are experienced by people accused of crimes. Her research interests include understanding the experiences of individuals leaving custody, the Canadian bail system, community corrections, and social control.

Leanne Stevens

Supervisor: Dr. Sandra Bucerius

Leanne is an MA student in the Department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. She obtained her BA in Sociology from MacEwan University. Leanne's research interests broadly include correctional officer (CO) and prison subculture, CO mental health, and anti-terrorism law and policy.

Manzah-Kyentoh Yankey

B.A (Hons), MA, University of Alberta

Manzah-Kyentoh Yankey is a PhD student in the department of Sociology at the University of Alberta. Her research interests include Race, Policing, Punishment, Criminalization, and Social Inequality. She received her MA in Sociology from the University of Alberta. Her MA thesis examined police culture from an intersectional approach. Her PhD Dissertation will examine racism and whiteness in Canadian policing.