February 08, 2019
18 items

Lakehead University researcher receiving $100k from CIHR to examine post-traumatic stress injury in Thunder Bay firefighters

February 8, 2019 – Thunder Bay, Ont.

Lakehead University’s Dr. Kathryn Sinden is receiving $100,534 from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research for a study that will assist firefighters who experience post-traumatic stress injury while on the job in Thunder Bay.

Dr. Sinden, assistant professor in Kinesiology, has developed a strong research partnership with Thunder Bay Fire Rescue (TBFR), the Thunder Bay Professional Firefighters Association (TBPFA), and the chair of their Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) over the last two years to identify and address the high rates of critical incident exposure by members of this fire service.

“Our preliminary data indicates that 94 per cent of firefighters in Thunder Bay experience at least one critical event over a two-month period,” Dr. Sinden said.

“Out of those events, 79 per cent involved at least one or two deaths and 54 per cent involve children. These results appear to be higher than the critical incident exposure of fire services in other Canadian regions,” Dr. Sinden added. 

The burden of critical incident exposure suggests a strategy is needed, one that is relevant and impactful for firefighters with Thunder Bay Rescue.

TBFR’s current Critical Incident Stress Management involves combined formal and informal strategies and the key components that support firefighter’s mental health is not clear.

“Consequently, the overarching question developed by our team is: What are the preferred, effective components that should be maintained in the Thunder Bay Fire Rescue and Thunder Bay Professional Firefighters Association Critical Incident Stress Management program?” Dr. Sinden said.

The objectives developed in partnership with TBFR, the TBPFFA and the CIRT Chair include identifying the:

  • Burden of Critical Incident Exposure and incidence of post-traumatic stress injury among career firefighters in Thunder Bay, Ontario 
  • TBFR firefighters’ experiences with formal compared to informal critical incident management strategies following a critical incident exposure 
  • Impact of delivering formal and informal critical incident management strategies on the CIRT members 
  • Current best-practices and outline next steps regarding new resources and/or modification to existing strategies

Dr. Sinden has assembled a team focused on research in Northern Ontario, with expertise in firefighting, firefighter work health, occupational mental health and qualitative methods to conduct a series of three studies.

  • The first study will employ quantitative methods to identify the critical incident exposure and post-traumatic stress injury exposure in this fire service.

  • The second study will involve both qualitative and quantitative methodological approaches to identify TBFR firefighters’ experiences with formal and informal critical incident management strategies.

  • The third study will use quantitative and qualitative methods to identify the impact of implementing these interventions on the CIRT’s team mental health.

For the final phase, Dr. Sinden will consolidate her findings into a report to review with Thunder Bay Fire Rescue and the Thunder Bay Professional Firefighters Association.

“Thank you to Dr. Sinden for undertaking such important research and to the CIHR for recognizing and funding the treatment of trauma experienced by firefighters and other public safety workers,” said Dr. Andrew Dean, Lakehead’s Vice-President, Research and Innovation.

Dr. Sinden is receiving a CIHR Post-Traumatic Stress Injuries Catalyst grant.

The Government of Canada recognizes that public safety personnel – from firefighters and police officers to paramedics and correctional workers, among many others – put themselves in harm’s way to keep our communities and our nation safe. Their hazardous and volatile work environments can put public safety personnel at risk for mental health impacts and severe psychological difficulties, known as post-traumatic stress injuries.

Research is needed to determine which policies, programs, and treatments will improve the mental wellness and resilience of those in public safety occupations.

Today, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) released the results of its PTSI Catalyst Grant competition, which will provide 22 one-year grants of up to $150,000, for a total investment of $2.95 million. These grants will serve as a springboard for researchers who are increasing our understanding of how to identify, treat, and prevent PTSI among public safety personnel.

CIHR also recently launched the Team Grants in PTSI competition, which represents a further investment of $8.4 million. This investment will support four-year research projects designed to develop the new research evidence and tools needed to address gaps in PTSI among public safety personnel in Canada. The results of this competition are expected to be available in March 2020.

Funding from CIHR also generates support from the federal Research Support Fund to offset the indirect costs of research incurred by universities.

In 2018/19, Lakehead University will receive nearly $2 million in assistance from the Research Support Fund to support the indirect costs of research, which includes costs for supporting the management of intellectual property, research and administration, ethics and regulatory compliance, research resources, and research facilities.

Lakehead University students learning about fat biking in NW Ontario and NE Minnesota

Group photos of students with a fat bike in the snow.Back row, from left to right, Cameron Gillis, Stéphane Garrigan, Rod Swatton, Glen Quinn, Daniel Wakeling, Aidan O’Sullivan. Front row: Martha Stanley, Peter Moule. These students will do research into fat biking.

February 7, 2019 – Thunder Bay, Ont.

This winter, seven undergraduate students and instructors from the School of Outdoor Recreation, Parks and Tourism at Lakehead University are exploring how people use fat bikes in recreational and sporting activities throughout Northwestern Ontario and Northeastern Minnesota. 

As one of the first post-secondary courses to be offered on fat biking, Topics in Outdoor Recreation – Fat Bikes: Big Tires – Big Aspirations provides a unique experiential opportunity for students to acquire fat biking skills while also conducting interviews with managers, shop owners and fat bikers throughout Northwestern Ontario and Northeastern Minnesota.

Researchers will publish the findings from these interviews in reports and publications, and present them at local and regional workshops and conferences.

Anyone interested in learning more about this research project is encouraged to contact Dr. Harvey Lemelin in the School of Outdoor Recreation, Parks and Tourism at, or 807-343-8745.

Thunder Bay Police Training at Lakehead University - Feb. 8 and 9

The Thunder Bay Police Service will conduct Immediate Rapid Deployment (IRD) Training on Friday, Feb. 8 in Lakehead's Prettie Residence and on Saturday, Feb. 9 on the fourth floor of the Centennial building.

Please contact Frank Sgambelluri with any concerns or questions at 343-8131 or by email at

Message from the Office of the Provost and Vice-President (Academic)

Dr. Chander Shahi, Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies, has indicated his intention to be considered for a new term as Dean. A Decanal Review Committee has been established.

At this time, I am asking that you consider and provide feedback to me on the following:

1. The Faculty of Graduate Studies and its future.

2. The leadership of Dr. Shahi.

Unattributed feedback will be used to inform the decanal review of Dr. Shahi, as well as the ongoing development of the Faculty of Graduate Studies.

Please respond to by Friday, Feb. 15.

Thank you, 

Dr. David Barnett
Interim Provost and Vice-President (Academic)

Works in Progress Talk - Monday, Feb. 11

The Department of English presents the Work-In-Progress Series.

English Master's student Samantha Dewaele will speak about her current project Comics, Closure, and Climate Change.

Monday, Feb. 11, 1-2 pm in ATAC 5036 and OA3041. Video-conference from Orillia.

Everyone welcome.

2019 Summer Work Study Program (SWSP)

The Lakehead University SWSP provides full-time employment to eligible undergraduate students during the spring/summer.

These positions provide students with a valuable opportunity to work with, and be mentored by, Lakehead University faculty and staff. The subsidy will cover up to $2,250 in wages and payroll deductions and is based on 480 hours and 16 weeks worked (30 hrs/wk for 16 weeks).

Employers may complete a Job Request application by logging in as an “Employer” via the MySuccess Portal from February 1-28. Applications submitted after the deadline will be considered as space permits.

Further questions may be directed to Cheryl Ellis at

History for Brunch - Monday, Feb. 11

The Department of History welcomes faculty, students and staff to its monthly presentation series History for Brunch.

February is Black History Month and it is fitting that Dr. Ronald Harpelle will be presenting Mutiny in the Aftermath of WWI: The British West Indies Regiment in Taranto on Monday Feb. 11 from 10:00 am to 11:00 am in ATAC 2021 and videoconferenced with Orillia in OA 3007.

Evolutionary Concepts Public Seminar: Tuesday, Feb. 12

Date: Tuesday, Feb. 12 - Darwin Day
Start Time: 8:30 am

Guest Speaker: Dr. Douglas Haffner, Senior Canada Research Chair, Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research, University of Windsor

Presentation: “The ancient lakes of Sulawesi Island: Wallace’s dream ponds”

Location: UC0050 (Lower Lecture Theatre - Thunder Bay)

All are welcome. This is a free, public seminar. No registration is required.

Study Abroad Information Sessions - Feb. 12, 13, 14

Are you interested in studying abroad?  Find out more about the opportunities available to you!

Lakehead University has partnerships with universities all around the globe, from the sunny beaches of Australia all the way up to the Arctic circle.  Students can choose to spend a semester, summer or full-year abroad at one of our international partner institutions while earning credit towards their degree. Where could your education take you?

Study Abroad Information Sessions are happening next week on February 12, 13, and 14. 

Study Abroad Information Sessions:

Tuesday, Feb. 12

  • 11 am in LI 0019
  • 3 pm in LI 0019
  • 5 pm in LI 0019

Wednesday, Feb. 13

  • 10 am in LI 0019
  • 2 pm in LI 0019
  • 4 pm in LI 0019
  • 6 pm in LI 0019

Thursday, Feb. 14

  • 11 am in LI 0019
  • 3 pm in LI 0019
  • 5 pm in LI 0019

Register for a Study Abroad Information Session HERE email for more information.

RBC Work Integrated Learning Program Workshop Series: Critical Thinking vs Analytical Thinking: What’s the Difference? - Wednesday, Feb. 13

The Faculty of Business Administration and the RBC Work Integrated Learning Program Workshop Series invite you to a workshop called Critical Thinking vs Analytical Thinking: What’s the Difference?

In the changing world of work, critical and analytical thinking could be the most important skills in your toolbox . . . But what does that mean and what is the difference between the two? Rhonda is an engaging and entertaining speaker ready to clear up this question for us.

Dr. Rhonda Dubec is a long-time instructor of English, Latin, Linguistics, and Etymology and now also works in the Teaching Commons helping other instructors teach in more engaging and effective ways.

The session is open to all students, staff and faculty.

Wednesday, Feb. 13
5:30 - 7:00 pm
Lakehead Thunder Bay - ATAC 5036
Lakehead Orillia - OA 2005

Please RSVP to Maryann Kleynendorst, Experiential Learning Navigator at

Engaging Students in Course Content: Teaching Circle #3

Join Dr. Rhonda Dubec, Coordinator of Instructional Development and other Teaching Commons staff for a conversation about "how to engage students in course content."

9:45-10:45 am - Thursday, Feb. 14
The Teaching Commons, LI 5014

Registration is never required but always appreciated. Consider signing up for future Teaching Circles as well:

  • #4: Friday, March 1, 2:45-3:45 - Creating a culture of academic honesty.

  • #5: Tuesday, March 12, 10:15-11:15 - Managing breadth and depth.

  • #6: Friday, March 29th, 2:45-3:45 - Becoming an even better professor.

Research & Innovation Professional Development Workshop - SETTING UP START-UP COMPANIES: Tips for the Entrepreneur - Thursday, Feb. 21

The RESEARCH & INNOVATION OFFICES invite you to participate in a Research and Innovation Professional Development Workshop – SETTING UP START-UP COMPANIES: Tips for the Entrepreneur.

Jay Lefton practices in the areas of corporate and securities law. His clients range from start-ups to multinationals, and he also advises inventors and academic institutions in connection with the commercialization of discoveries.

He will be discussing commercial and tax considerations associated with establishing a company, getting your inventions into the company, and dealing with employees, consultants, investors and shareholders.

Jay will talk about common mistakes that startups make, and how to avoid them. Jay has been an Adjunct Faculty member of Osgoode Hall Law School and the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Business. Jay is a graduate of Port Arthur Collegiate Institute and the University of Toronto law school.

DATE: Thursday, Feb. 21
TIME: 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
ROOM: Ingenuity Connections Theatre, FB 2023, CASES Building, Thunder Bay campus

Lunch is included and RSVPs are required.

To register please contact: Kelly Fettes at 343-8871 or email by Friday, Feb. 15.

Undergraduate Student Conference - Tuesday, Feb. 26

Tuesday, Feb. 26

  • Poster presentation in the Agora
  • Oral presentations in the Senate chambers

11 am - 1 pm

Presentations will be peer-judged by the participants.

Winners from each Faculty will be invited to lunch with the President on Friday, March 8.

Theme for R & I Week: Rise of the Machines.

For registration forms visit the R & I Website:

#Research: Social Media in Data Collection and Knowledge Dissemination - Tuesday, Feb. 26

This panel discussion on Tuesday, Feb. 26 from 2:00 - 4:00 pm in ATAC 5036/OA 3007. It is also available by videoconference via Zoom.

The panel features researchers from diverse disciplinary backgrounds who are using social media in different ways in their research, whether in data collection, dissemination, or both. The panel will touch on the benefits and challenges of using social media as a research tool, as well as ethical considerations.

The session is geared towards researchers (faculty & student); however, anyone is welcome to attend. Coffee & cookies will be served.

For more information and to RSVP visit this website.

Research and Innovation Week - Health and Technology Forum

On behalf of the Lakehead University's Office of Research Services, please join us for Lakehead University's Health and Technology Forum to be held as part of our 14th Annual Research & Innovation Week.

The Health and Technology Forum will take place on Monday, February 25, 2019 and will feature a number of exciting events with our keynote speaker and bestselling author, Prof. Timothy Caulfield (Canada Research Chair in Health Law and Policy, University of Alberta). The forum aims to promote discussion and constructive debate around the topic of advancing technology and its impact on health and healthcare in Northwestern Ontario.

By observing the intersection of health and technology from multiple perspectives, we can explore its positive and innovative impacts on care and well-being, while also confronting the potentially harmful ways in which modern technology can affect the mental and physical health in our communities.

Health Technology Panel Discussion and Luncheon with Professor Timothy Caulfield

Date: Monday, February 25, 2019 from noon - 2:00 pm
Place: Faculty Lounge

You are invited to a special lunch and panel discussion facilitated by Prof. Timothy Caulfield.

The Panel will highlight some of the innovative technological approaches being taken by Lakehead researchers and community partners to address pressing health care needs in rural and remote regions. For further information and to register for this event, please visit this web page.


Health Technology Forum Walking Art Exhibition


Date: Monday February 25, 2019 from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Place: New CASES building (‘FB’ on the campus map) - meet in the Atrium on the 2nd Floor

Dr. Pauline Sameshima (Canada Research Chair in Arts Integrated Studies) will be hosting a walking art exhibition tour, which has been curated to share how the arts function as a technology to engage communities in research to better our lives. For more information about the art works on display, and the artists being showcased, please visit this web page.

Evening Public Keynote Speaker, Prof. Timothy Caulfield: Health in the Era of Celebrity, Social Media and Twisted Facts

Date: Monday February 25, 2019 from at 7:00 pm
Place: Lakehead University University Centre (UC) Lecture Theatre 2011

Please join us Monday evening when Prof. Tim Caulfield will be our keynote speaker, discussing the ways in which social media and celebrity culture are impacting our health and lifestyle decisions. Following his presentation, Prof. Caulfield will be available for book signings.

For further information and to register for this event please visit this web page.

The theme of this year's Research & Innovation Week is Rise of the Machines. There are many other events, public talks and research showcases taking place during Research & Innovation Week, including interactive displays on Saturday, February 23, 2019 the Intercity Shopping Centre. For a full list of this year’s R&I Week events, please visit

We look forward to celebrating Research & Innovation Week with you.

Senate Standing Committee Faculty Nominations - deadline Thursday, Feb. 28

The Senate Nominations Committee is welcoming nominations from full-time faculty members at the Orillia and Thunder Bay campuses to fill upcoming vacancies on the Senate Standing Committees.

These vacancies are self nominated. Please click here for more information or to access the interest to serve form.

The deadline for nomination submissions is Thursday, Feb. 28.

Please direct any inquiries to Yvonne Roussel at

Award to Staff for Outstanding Performance and/or Contributions - Deadline: Thursday, March 1

NOMINATIONS OPEN – Staff Award for Outstanding Performance and Contributions - Deadline Monday, March 1

Nominations are being accepted for the Award to Staff for Outstanding Performance and/or Contributions. This award recognizes and rewards outstanding performance and contributions to the University by a non-faculty employee.

The Award to Staff Policy can be referenced here which outlines eligibility, selection criteria, and nomination guidelines. If you are interested in nominating an eligible employee, please complete this nomination form and recognize your colleague for the exceptional work they do.

Nominations are due no later than Monday, March 1 to the Office of Human Resources.

LUNSA 31th Annual Powwow - Friday, March 8

The Lakehead University Native Student Association (LUNSA) is excited to be hosting their 31st Annual Powwow at the C.J. Sanders Field house, March 8-10, 2019. The theme of this year’s powwow is Celebrating Community, and all students, staff, faculty and the greater off-campus community are invited to attend this free event featuring Battle Nation, as the host drum.

This community event will gather people together in celebration of Aboriginal culture and dance.  Warm-ups will be held on Friday, March 8th from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Grand Entry is scheduled for 12:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 9th with a Traditional Feast being served at 5:00 p.m. and the powwow will wrap up at 10:00 p.m. for the day.  Grand Entry is set for 12:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 10th with the powwow ending at 5:00 p.m.

LUNSA is a volunteer LUSU club.  Its goals are to promote the spirit of unity among Aboriginal students at Lakehead University through social, cultural, and recreational events in addition to promoting cultural awareness between club members and the greater Lakehead University student population.

The annual powwow is LUNSA’s signature event that showcases tremendous talent and entertainment, while reinforcing traditional aspects of Aboriginal culture such as drumming, dancing, singing, and giving thanks. Attendees can purchase traditional Aboriginal merchandise from on-site vendors.

Everyone is welcome to attend!

Master of Ceremonies: Jim Mishquart, Rocky Bay First Nation
Arena Director: Ryan Gustafson, Whitesand First Nation
Spiritual Advisor: Gilbert Smith, Northwest Bay First Nation
Host Drum: Battle Nation, Fort William First Nation


Friday March 8th:
Warm-ups 6:00pm

Saturday March 9th:
Grand Entry 12:00pm and 6:30pm
Traditional Feast 5pm

Sunday March 10th:
Grand Entry at 12:00pm and Closing Ceremonies completed by 5:00pm

For more information, please contact LUNSA at