The Faculty of Health welcomes 15 faculty members this fall. Part two of this two-part series introduces the following new faculty members: Linda Juergensen, Laura Nicholson, Ann Pottinger, Shahirose Premji, Ruth Rodney, Emilie Roudier and Jessica Vorstermans.
New faculty members Simon Adam, Lora Appel, Claudia Chaufan, Aurthur Cheng, Sarah Evans, Erez Freud, Sean Hillier and Andrea Josse were featured in part one on Thursday, Oct. 4.
“A warm welcome to all students, faculty and staff who are returning to the Faculty of Health for another academic year, as well as those who are joining us for the first time,” said Dean Paul McDonald. “This will be an exciting year in the Faculty of Health. We are launching searches to hire 60 new faculty and staff, the largest single growth in our history. We will be developing a renewed strategic direction to improve research impact, student experience and success, implementing learning and teaching innovations, and laying the foundation to improve our space and infrastructure. Like always, our success is a function of the excellence, caring, generosity and creativity of the community that is the Faculty of Health.”
Linda Juergensen is a registered nurse and PhD candidate from the School of Nursing at the University of Ottawa with an interest in the sociopolitical context of health. She joins the School of Nursing as an assistant professor.
As a former public health nurse, she has lived and worked in Canada, Africa and the Middle East. Her undergraduate and graduate training, teaching and research in community health nursing combines a local and global perspective, as well as a social justice and critical theory lens. For her master’s thesis, she explored the meaning and function of illicit injection drug use for women from a feminist perspective. Her doctoral study describes the effects of viewing epidemics as “wars,” namely the war on HIV-AIDS and on public health policies, practices and the experiences of people at risk or living with the virus in Ontario. She is particularly interested in the concept of “engagement” and examining the implications of decolonization and reconciliation for the development of a more inclusive and comprehensive approach to public health care with people affected by HIV and tuberculosis, a more equitable partnership where “no one is left behind” (UNDP, 2015).
Laura Nicholson joins the School of Nursing as director of the Nursing Simulation Centre (NSC). She has more than 20 years of experience in emergency nursing, and has been teaching in baccalaureate nursing programs for nearly two decades.
Her research interests include the use of simulation as a learning modality, and she has embarked on projects to explore the use of simulation technologies in transformative nursing student learning and the influence of simulation on hand hygiene compliance in clinical practice.
She is principal investigator of a collaboration led by Innovation York that partners startup medical device company Studio 1 Labs with York’s School of Nursing to test and analyze an intelligent bed sheet that can monitor health and vital signs. The partnership resulted in a proof of concept of this innovative medical device.
Data collection was completed in January 2018 at the NSC as the second phase of the project. The NSC is used to train York’s nursing students, and provided a unique opportunity for the startup to collect data in a simulated hospital setting.
Ann Pottinger (RN, MN) has worked across the continuum of mental health care and currently serves as a clinical director for the Complex Care and Recovery Program at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). Pottinger joins the School of Nursing as an assistant lecturer.
She has held several clinical leadership positions at CAMH. including advanced practice nurse, discipline chief for nursing and director of quality and patient safety. She is responsible for leading initiatives to build staff capability and capacity to deliver high-quality, safe, effective and client-centred care. Pottinger teaches nursing students and interprofessional health-care providers, and has co-designed mental health and health equity curricula. She is a master facilitator with the Patient Safety Education Program.
Shahirose Premji joins York University as the director of the School of Nursing. Premji is a clinical researcher and former neonatal nurse practitioner and public health nurse (postpartum). Her academic involvement began in 1994, which includes two years (2008-10) as an associate professor at Aga Khan University’s School of Nursing and Midwifery (AKU-SoNaM). In 2015, Premji was a visiting lecturer at AKU-SoNaM, East Africa (Nairobi, Kenya).
Premji leads an international team of academics, clinicians and policy decision-makers that examines the role of psychosocial factors (e.g. stress, depression and anxiety) as both risk factors and targets of intervention to prevent preterm birth. The goal is to develop psychosocial interventions that consider the socioeconomic and cultural context of pregnant women in order to limit unintended adverse consequences.
She is the founder and first president of the Canadian Association of Neonatal Nurses (CANN). Her international work dates back to 1989 and includes teaching or providing technical expertise in development of nursing programs in countries such as Kenya, Tanzania, Pakistan and Syria. She is also the recipient of several awards, including the Jeanne Mance Award (the highest award given by CANN).
Ruth Rodney joins the School of Nursing as an assistant professor. Her areas of expertise are health promotion, violence prevention and gender issues, examining both masculinities and femininities.
Rodney has 14 years of clinical nursing experience in a number of areas. Over the past six years, she has focused on research with marginalized populations in Canada and abroad. She has experience in qualitative research and global health research methods, using critical theories to understand how we can better address long-standing social problems. She is particularly interested in violence prevention at the community level, and one current focus is adolescent populations and how to better support them in decreasing violence in dating relationships.
Currently, she is the qualitative team lead for a UN Women-led national study on domestic violence in Guyana, South America. Her populations of interest are Caribbean, Latin American and African diaspora located in those regions and in Canada.
Emilie Roudier joins the School of Kinesiology and Health Science as an assistant professor. After obtaining a PhD in biomedical sciences from Université Grenoble Alpes, Roudier performed postdoctoral studies at the Karolinska Institute within the Institute of Environmental Science.
In 2007, Roudier began to perform research projects related to the determinants of vascular health by studying the impact of chronic diseases (cardiovascular diseases) and physical activity on the microvasculature, our smallest blood vessels, first at the Université de Montréal and then at York University. Since 2015, she has been teaching in the field of chronic diseases within two programs of the Faculty of Health: Kinesiology and Health Science and Global Health.
Her current research interests are in how cardiovascular diseases are leading causes of the global health burden. The environment we live in, the air that we breathe, the food that we eat and the things that we do (active versus sedentary living) have a significant impact on our cardiovascular health. While we start to better understand how environmental factors influence the health of our arteries, the macrovascular bed, it remains unknown how the interaction between environmental factors and genetic background influence the endothelial phenotype of our smallest blood vessels, the microvascular bed.
Using approaches of molecular and integrative physiology, Roudier’s research program aims to better understand how the interplay between non-modifiable genetic background and modifiable environmental risk factors can influence the microvascular health.
Jessica Vorstermans is an assistant professor in the Critical Disability Studies program in the School of Health Policy and Management. Her research makes critical interventions into the field of international experiential and service learning and global citizenship, engaging plural ideas of human rights, disability and equity in our current neoliberal world.
She uses critical disability theory and the lens of intersectionality to complicate north-south encounters engaging impairment and disablement. Her ongoing work engages community-based research, centres the perspectives and desires of those in the south, and takes up equity, critical care in community, disability and north/south relations.
Throughout her PhD and as executive director of a small, international experiential learning organization that has 10 partners in the global south, her research has focused on centring the desires and perspectives of those in the Global South who welcome and host northern volunteers to their small NGOs working in the fields of rights, disability, health equity, the environment and community work. She has deep and long-lasting relationships with these organizations and has collaborated on research with them to understand their experiences. Over the past 15 years, she has lived, worked and completed research in Ecuador, Cuba, Guatemala, Paraguay, the Dominican Republic and the Netherlands.