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Arts & Science Program

Alumni in the News

Arts & Science grads are often featured in newspapers and magazines, on television and radio shows, and otherwise throughout the media. Click around to see how our alumni are making news.

Election 2019: Comparing the Federal Parties’ Climate Change Commitments
EcoJustice Blog | 12 September 2019 | Julia Croome, Class of 2004

This fall, Canadians will cast their ballots in the country’s 43rd general election. For many, climate change will be a defining issue (perhaps for the first time in Canadian history) when they vote for their next federal government. According to polling released in July, climate change is one of the top three issues Canadians say will likely impact how they vote. It’s not surprising that Canadians are concerned about climate change. We are in a climate emergency and many people living in Canada recognize that the clock is ticking on our ability to address the crisis. Read more here.

Advisory Group Celebrates Anniversary
The Chronicle-Journal | 23 August 2019 | Dr. Chi Cheng, Class of 1993

Dr. Chi Cheng, Physician Researcher and Lead of the NorthBEAT Collaborative, hosted a celebration for the one-year anniversary of NorthBEAT’s Youth Advisory Group. Youth, family members, and community partners gathered on Aug. 15 to celebrate the successes of NorthBEAT’s Youth Advisory Group, including the launch of a new youth-led social media strategy that aims to increase knowledge about psychosis for youth in Northwestern Ontario. Read more here.

Hamilton Councillors Give Go-Ahead to Innovative James Street North Condo Project
The Hamilton Spectator | 14 June 2019 | Emily Power, Class of 2017

An innovative condominium project aimed at increasing the attainability of home ownership has received the go-ahead from Hamilton city council. “This was a big point in the process, and so now we can look to opening our sales office and selling units to anyone who’s interested,” Emily Power, JvN/d manager of community engagement, said Thursday. Read more here.

Mental Health On Campus: Taking Action
The Agenda with Steve Paikin | 3 May 2019 | Stephanie Bertolo, Class of 2018

There’s a rising demand for mental health care services on campuses across Ontario, and administrations are grappling with which services are most needed and how best to implement them. The Agenda speaks to representatives from Queens, McMaster, and the University of Guelph to discuss why it’s time to go beyond just an awareness of the problem to find viable and effective solutions. Watch the video here.

Will Recent Budget Changes Help Indebted Students? 
The Globe and Mail | 12 April 2019 | Stephanie Bertolo, Class of 2018

New graduates with student debt will get a discount on their loans thanks to the recent federal budget — but student leaders and financial experts say it’s not enough to soothe the financial anxiety many young people face upon graduation. Read more here.

Seven Surprising Things That Could Change the Job Market by 2030
CBC News | 10 April  2019 | Sarah Doyle, Class of 2006

Everyone expects automation and other tech advances to eliminate some jobs and create others. But in a new report, Canadian futurists say there’s a far wider range of trends that could influence the types of skills that are likely to be in demand — or not — in the future. Read more here.

Conducting a Musical Life
McMaster’s Alumni Magazine, “MAC” | 9 April 2019 | Alexander Cann, Class of 1996

Both began playing piano at the age of five, both describe themselves as risk takers — and both were enlisted in their second year of McMaster to step up to the podium and conduct. Alexander Cann, artistic director of the Bach Elgar Choir, shares musical notes with Mac student Pascal Adesina, choral director of the McMaster Gospel Choir. Read more here.

Socioeconomic Inequalities: The Scandal of our Times
The Hamilton Spectator | 1 March 2019 | Jim Dunn, Class of 1991

Noted British inequality researcher Danny Dorling calls it “the scandal of our times.” He’s referring to more than a century of severe socioeconomic inequalities in health in the United Kingdom, but the pattern is similar in Canada, and every bit as scandalous. Read more here.

Dundas Wentworth Lodge Vacant Land Still Being Reviewed by City Staff
The Hamilton Spectator | 28 February 2019 | Jim Dunn, Class of 1991

City of Hamilton staff have not taken any steps toward last year’s city council direction to sell a surplus site of approximately 3.5-acres south of Wentworth Lodge, identified as a possible location for future seniors’ affordable housing. McMaster University professors Jim Dunn and Richard Harris told the Dundas Star News after the first meeting that creating new affordable space for seniors can have a wider impact on the community. Read more here.

Costco Fined $7 Million After Accepting Illegal Kickbacks, Ontario Government Review Finds
The Hamilton Spectator | 4 February 2019 | Michael Law, Class of 2001

Costco has been fined more than $7 million after the company was found to have accepted illegal kickbacks at 29 pharmacies in warehouses across the province from 2013 to 2015. Ontario’s Ministry of Health announced Friday it would penalize CWC Pharmacies (Ontario) Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Costco Wholesale Canada Ltd., after it found the company received illegal advertising payments before August 2015. Michael Law, the Canada Research Chair in Access to Medicines at the University of British Columbia, said generic drug prices in Canada are historically higher than those in other countries, such as the U.S. Read more here.

Why Isn’t There a Single Medical Licence for All Doctors in Canada?
The Globe and Mail | 5 January 2019 | Monika Dutt, Class of 1999

Monika Dutt has worked as a doctor in Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan, the Northwest Territories and Ontario. Although she has been practising medicine since 2005, a combination of family medicine and public health, each move has required Dr. Dutt to go through the “frustrating and expensive” process of getting a new medical licence. Read more here.

MSF Puts No Borders On Employee Ideas
The Globe and Mail, Greater Toronto’s Top Employers SIP | 6 December 2018 | Tiffany Moore, Class of 1993

A striking conversation piece greets all visitors to the Toronto head offices of Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières Canada (MSF). In the reception area, guests are confronted with a dramatic nine-foot by six-foot multi-coloured world map that almost completely covers one wall. Countries appear in vivid shades of orange, green and blue. Pinned within and outside of these nations are passport-sized photos of some 150 physicians, nurses, logisticians and professional support staff who are helping save and restore lives in locations often plagued by war and other perils. Read more here.

Showing Off Innovations Cooked Up in CityLAB
The Hamilton Spectator | 4 December 2018 | Patrick Byrne, Class of 2011

Students from Hamilton’s post-secondary schools are figuring out how to make the community better — with a little help from city hall. Students from Mohawk College, McMaster University and Redeemer University College had a chance to show off the work they have done in tandem with City of Hamilton staff at the CityLAB Hamilton’s program showcase last week. Read more here.

Targeting Rogue Enzymes in Rare Breast Cancer
The Princess Margaret: UHN Magazine | 27 November 2018 | Philippe Bedard, Class of 1999

A new clinical trial in breast cancer, combining the TTK drug with the chemotherapy drug Taxol will open across Canada this fall. Dr. Philippe Bedard, Oncologist at the Princess Margaret, has been the lead Clinical Investigator for the Phase 1 trials of both of The Campbell Family Institute drugs and will be involved with the upcoming Phase 2 programs. Read more here.

Sunanna Bhasin on her novel, Underpass
The Medium (U of T) | 25 November 2018 | Sunanna Bhasin, Class of 2017

Sunanna Bhasin is a published author in the flesh, but a hardworking accounting student right underneath. She shares her experiences in the writing world with me and also uncovers the guidance it took, and the moments that made her take UNDERPASS, her self-published book, one step further. Read more here.

[Sunanna’s book can be purchased here].

Removing surgery will effectively close Grimsby hospital says leader
The Hamilton Spectator | 27 October 2018 | Dr. Matthew Noble Wohlgemut, Class of 1998

West Lincoln Memorial Hospital would likely have to close its emergency department, intensive care unit and acute care beds if surgery is relocated to Hamilton for more than two years during building upgrades, warns the interim medical director. “This proposal is effectively a closure of West Lincoln Memorial Hospital,” Dr. Matthew Noble Wohlgemut states in a letter Friday to the Hamilton Health Sciences board and CEO Rob MacIsaac. Read more here. [Read an update here]. [Read the resolution here].

‘Weed Deck’ of Cannabis-Themed Playing Cards Aims to Inform
The McMaster Daily News | 15 October 2018 | Ben Barrett-Forrest, Class of 2014

With cannabis set to become legal across Canada this week, government agencies have spent a lot of time, energy and resources educating Canadians on the legal parameters surrounding the soon-to-be-legal drug.However, so much focus on the rules and regulations has resulted in little attention being paid to the process of educating Canadians about cannabis itself. Enter Ben Barrett-Forrest. The Arts & Science graduate wants to help Canadians make informed decisions about cannabis use. Read more here.

Watching My Brother Die Made Me a Better Doctor
The Globe and Mail | 10 October 2018 | Vivian Tam, Class of 2014

Often, we treat loss as though it only happens once. Immediately after someone you love dies, the condolences from friends and colleagues come pouring in for a short while, then the people around you settle back into their lives, and the well wishes and offers for companionship gradually, and understandably, decline. Read more here.

The Lessons Women are Asking Men to Learn
The Globe and Mail | 5 October 2018 | Samantha Nutt, Class of 1991

The entire circus around Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation was an unwanted refresher for women and girls of the lessons forced upon us throughout our lives. Read more here.

The Glamour of Grit: Zero-Waste Movement Gains Traction in Age of Social Media
The Globe and Mail | 7 September 2018 | Kate Parizeau, Class of 2001

It’s Wednesday afternoon and the five female volunteers at Bare Market, a Toronto-based package-free shop, are struggling to keep up with demand. Read more here. [Note: Behind paywall]

Unnatural Disasters
Journey: Lakehead University Alumni Magazine | 31 July 2018 | Cheryl Lousley, Class of 1996

A terrible inferno engulfed Southern California in December 2017. The largest wildfire in the modern history of California was ignited by six years of drought and winds gusting up to 97 km/h. As flames seared the tinder-dry landscape, over 100,000 people were forced to evacuate their homes and hundreds of buildings were destroyed. It was in the aftermath of this catastrophe that Dr. Cheryl Lousley travelled to the Golden State. Read more here.

Transition Q & A: Helen Kang, health-care communication consultant
University Affairs Magazine | 10 July 2018 | Helen Kang, Class of 2002

Helen Kang earned her PhD in sociology, with a focus on medical sociology and history, from Simon Fraser University. She is now a self-employed consultant who specializes in health-care communication. Read her Q&A here.

We Must Not Treat Data like a Natural Resource
The Globe and Mail | 9 July 2018 | Lisa Austin, Class of 1994

The federal government recently announced the launch of a consultation on digital and data transformation. In its press release, the government framed the central issue as seeking a balance between economic innovation and privacy. This is unfortunate. Read more here.

James North Condo Aims to Be Model for Affordability
The Hamilton Spectator | 4 January 2018 | Emily Power, Class of 2017

John van Nostrand and Emily Power are planning a condo that will offer personalized solutions for home ownership, including customized unit configuration. The plan is to build a eight-storey building on James North at Ferrie where a portion of the block would be torn down for the project. Read more here.

Health Unit Welcomes New Associate Medical Officer of Health
TB News Watch | 24 August 2017 | Emily Groot, Class of 2007

Dr. Emily Groot is very familiar with Northern Ontario; she grew up in Sault Ste. Marie.  Her understanding of the region will be an asset in her new role as the Thunder Bay District Health Unit’s associate medical officer of health.  Read more here.

Lieutenant Governor’s Visionaries Prize Finalist
The Globe and Mail | 22 April 2017 | Vass Bednar, Class of 2008

The Lieutenant Governor’s Visionaries Prize was created to give Ontario’s most creative thinkers a forum for tackling the challenges that Ontarians and Canadians will face over the next 50 years—and to give them a chance to present their solutions in front of a panel of the province’s thought leaders. Winners will be determined in the fall of 2017. More information can be found here.

Theatre Work Often Lands Actor Behind Bars
Hamilton Spectator | 1 February 2017 | Jill Kooymans, Class of 2014

After earning a Master’s degree in Applied Theatre at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London England, Jill Kooymans has developed a program for using theatre as a tool to help rehabilitate prisoners. Read More.

Study Highlights Drop in Jon Quality for Youth
CTV News | 6 December 2016 | Vass Bednar, Class of 2008

A new study from Statistics Canada about the precarious position young workers find themselves in — and how little it has changed in four decades — has refocused attention on the federal government’s push to create jobs for youth. The numbers mirror what the expert panel on youth employment has been hearing during their work. Vass Bednar, who chairs the panel, says she has heard issues ranging from the role of governments at all levels in job creation, to the changing business landscape that gives rise to more part-time and temporary work and workers who worry that putting their home address on an application may show them to be from a poorer part of town and dissuade employers from hiring them. Read more here.

City Solidifying Protocol on Transgender Rights
The Hamilton Spectator | 5 December 2016 | Clara Matheson, Class of 2002

The city is getting closer to solidifying its promised transgender and gender nonconforming protocol. The goal of the newly drafted policy — which was pledged by the city as part of a settlement with the Human Rights Tribunal last year — is to “ensure the equitable, fair, and respectful treatment of all persons who work at or otherwise interact with the city as a resident or service user.” A local transgender woman filed an official complaint to the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario last October after she was barred by a security guard from using the women’s bathroom at the MacNab Street bus terminal downtown. Clara Matheson, the lawyer for the complainant — who has not been identified by name — said in a statement at the time that the resolution sends a “strong message” that should encourage municipalities generally to review their policies. Read more here.

Outstanding Alumni Recognized at Awards Ceremony
McMaster Daily News | 2 June 2016 | Alenia Kysela, Class of 1994

Dr. Alenia Kysela was one of eight alumni who were inducted into the Alumni Gallery, which recognizes outstanding accomplishments in professional and volunteer life, at the University’s annual Alumni Awards ceremony on Wed. 1 June 2016. Read More.

Trudeau Shuffles the DM Deck a Second Time
Ottawa Citizen | 8 March 2016 | Dylan Jones, Class of 1992

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau went outside of Canada’s public service to fill two deputy minister positions in his second shake-up of bureaucracy’s senior ranks within a week. Read More.

An Ethical Approach to Teaching
London School of Economics and Political Science | 22 February 2016 | Alison Powell, Class of 2000

Director of MSc Media and Communication (Data & Society) at The London School of Economics and Political Science, Dr. Alison Powell researches systems of technologies. Read More.

Mac Prof Shows Art in Louvre
McMaster Daily News | 4 January 2016 | Sarah Garside, Class of 1987

A McMaster psychiatrist has displayed her first ever oil painting at a prestigious art show at the Louvre in Paris, France. Read More.

The Art of Health Care
Hamilton Spectator | 11 September 2015 | Simon Oczkowski, Class of 2006

There is an art to caring for the sick that goes beyond conventional science and medicine.  Hamilton Health Sciences is joining James Street Supercrawl for the first time Friday to share how hospitals use creativity to heal and comfort. Read More.

Mac Kicks Off New Public Health Program
Hamilton Spectator | 11 September 2015 | Joyce Chan, Class of 2015

McMaster University has officially kicked off its brand-new graduate course in public health — a program borne out of the ripple effects of the SARS crisis. Read More.

Niagara Physician and McMaster Alumna Wins Sibley Award for Teaching
McMaster Daily News | 17 June 2015 | Amanda Bell, Class of 1995

Amanda Bell, an assistant clinical professor of the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine’s Niagara Regional Campus, is the 2015 recipient of the John C. Sibley Award for excellence in education by part-time faculty. Read More.

Alum to Receive Environmentalist Award
McMaster Times and Hamilton Spectator | 19 May 2015 | Stephanie McLarty, Class of 2003

Stephanie McLarty received an Award of Merit at the 2015 Hamilton Environmentalists of the Year Awards on 10 June 2015. Stephanie is the owner of REfficient, an online reuse marketplace. Companies can use REfficient to buy quality, discount telecom and A/V equipment from sustainable sources. See recent articles about Stephanie in the Hamilton Spectator and the McMaster Times (pp. 10-11).

Montreal Diary: Helping New Immigrants Embrace Winter
Montreal Gazette | 29 January 2015 | Adrienne Blattel, Class of 1998

For many new immigrants, the long, cold winter is an unpleasant side effect of becoming a Canuck. Community leader Adrienne Blattel is on a mission to change that. Read More.

Would You Eat These Carrots?
Hamilton Spectator | 7 January 2015 | Kate Parizeau, Class of 2001

Some vegetables never bask under the bright lights of the grocery store’s supermodel catwalk. Read More.

Don’t Limit the Role of Health Officers to Needles and Pills
Globe and Mail | 19 November 2014 | Monika Dutt, Class of 1999

Earlier this week, The Globe and Mail published a column asking public health officers to “focus on disease, not politics.” Read More.

Poor, Elderly, Stranded in West Side Food Deserts
Vancouver Sun | 25 June 2012 | Zsuzsi Fodor, Class of 2009

“Vancouver’s south and west-side neighbourhoods offer the least access to fresh affordable food, which can be a serious problem for people who are poor and who have mobility problems.” Read More.

Karen Bakker, 39: Sounds the Alarm on Dwindling Water
Globe and Mail | 27 April 2012 | Dr. Karen Bakker, Class of 1995

“Canadians have taken water for granted for too long, warns Karen Bakker, geography professor at the University of British Columbia and one of the country’s foremost experts on water governance.” Read More.

He’s Really Getting a Handel on his Direction
Hamilton Spectator | 26 May 2011 | Alex Cann, Class of 1996

The Bach Elgar Choir closes its season this Saturday with Handel’s Judas Maccabaeus…” It (Judas Maccabaeus) offers a perfect counterpoint to Messiah,” said the BEC’s new conductor, Alex Cann, who acknowledged the possibility of “a certain oratorio fatigure.” Read More.

Tings Chak’s Beautiful Book Pays Homage to ‘The First Real Home I Ever Had’
Hamilton Spectator | 20 April 2011 | Tings Chak, Class of 2009

“We’re all on loan to each other, for what time we have together.  The world gave us Tings Chak, on a five-year lease (2005-2010) as it were.” Read more here.

A McMaster Grad in Devastated Sri Lanka Sees How Little Some People Have – and Why We Should Care
Hamilton Spectator | 5 March 2011 | Jesse Bauman, Class of 2010

“Eight months and 12 days ago I was still in Canada — at Hamilton Place, to be specific. I received my undergraduate degree from McMaster University that day, along with hundreds of other excited and terrified young students. I left Canada a few months later to start a job with a relief and development organization in Sri Lanka…” Read More.