Speakers

Dr. Christine Kraus

SNOLAB

Dr. Christine Kraus completed her PhD in 2004 at Johannes Gutenberg Universität Mainz (Germany), focusing on the final measurements of the Mainz Neutrinos Mass Experiment. This experiment set the best limit on neutrino mass for about 10 years. Following her PhD, she moved to Canada and started a postdoc at Queen’s University working on the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory experiment. After that, she started at Laurentian University as a Canada Research Chair Tier II in particle astrophysics. Since 2021, she has been employed by SNOLAB as a senior research scientist. Her main research focus is the SNO+ experiment, a multi-purpose neutrino detector. For SNO+, she is the site activity coordinator for the collaboration, which means being responsible for supervising visiting scientists and ensuring that work on the experiment is done correctly and in order. In addition, she is also a member of the HALO collaboration and there is value in complementary data coming from two experiments in the same location capable of detecting supernova neutrinos. “As a research scientist I get to do what I love: answering fundamental questions about how the world works and what holds the Universe together. To do this we build large detectors that allow us to see traces of particles coming through, which appear as flashes of light. I am one of the people going 2 km deep underground to understand how the sun works.”

Professor Hilding Neilson

University of Toronto

Hilding Neilson is a non-tenure stream assistant professor in the David A. Dunlap Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics at the University of Toronto and is a member of the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation of Newfoundland and Labrador. He is an interdisciplinary scientist and educator working to blend Indigenous knowledges into astronomy curriculum with the goal of Indigenizing astronomy in Canada. His research also focuses on probing the physics of stars from those like our Sun to the biggest, most massive stars and how we use these stars as laboratories to better understand our Universe from cosmology to extrasolar planets.

Professor Shandin Pete

University of British Columbia

Dr. Shandin Pete was raised in Nłq̓alqʷ (“Place of the thick trees”, Arlee, Montana). His mother is from the Bitterroot Band of Salish in Montana and his father is Diné from Beshbihtoh Valley in Arizona. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Teaching at the University of British Columbia in the Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science Department. His disciplinary focus is on hydrogeology and science education with interest in Indigenous research methodologies, geoscientific ethnography, Indigenous astronomy, social-political tribal structures, culturally congruent instructional strategies, and Indigenous science philosophies. Most of his work in recent years has focused on community engagement to understanding shifts in an Indigenous paradigm of research for science knowledge production. This work has included investigations into traditional oral histories and customs that inform understanding of landscape phenomenon.

Steffani Grondin

University of Toronto

Steffani is a second year PhD student in the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University of Toronto, specializing in binary systems and escaped stars. She received a Combined Honours Physics and Astronomy degree from the University of British Columbia, where she researched pulsars and white dwarfs. Steffani is also passionate about science communication and has been featured in CBC News and the Discovery Channel. When she isn’t debugging her code, you can find her hiking, racing triathlons or shooting film on her 85-year old camera.

More coming soon!

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