VIU Scholarship, Research, and Creative Activity

2020 Provost's SRCA Award Recipients

VIU is pleased to announce the recipients of the third annual Provost’s Scholarship, Research and Creative Activity Awards for 2020.

Undergraduate Research Mentor Award

This is a university-wide award given to recognize an individual who has demonstrated excellence in mentoring and supporting undergraduate student researchers. Recipients will demonstrate an ability to guide student research, creative projects and development that has helped VIU learners to move from directed to independent research and creative work. They will have encouraged and supported students to share the results of their work as appropriate to the discipline (i.e. publications, presentations, performances) and their efforts will have resulted in transformative learning experiences for VIU undergrad students.

Recipient:  Dr. Linda Shea, Faculty of Health and Human Services - Nominated by Dr. Patricia O’Hagan

Dr. Linda Shea has been teaching undergraduate BSN students since 1997. She is passionate about creating learning spaces for her students that promote self-knowing, curiosity, and critical inquiry as foundations for excellence in clinical practice and scholarship. In view of emerging trends in health care, there is an urgent need for creative solutions to address complex issues impacting the health and well-being of humanity in our local and global communities. Linda believes that a strong foundation in critical inquiry will equip students to engage their curiosity, follow the threads of their passion, and creatively respond to emerging trends in health care through scholarship and practice. Linda’s dissertation focused on Ken Wilber’s Integral Theory, an evolutionary developmental meta-framework for organizing disciplinary knowledge founded on diverse ontological and epistemological assumptions. This systematic and unified arrangement invites consideration of cherished disciplinary viewpoints in relation to perspectives that may be less well known or even marginalized, so these insights may be leveraged toward pragmatic ends. 


Graduate Research Mentor Award

This is a university-wide award given to recognize an individual who has demonstrated excellence in mentoring and supporting graduate student researchers.  The recipients will have demonstrated excellence in their ability to guide graduate student research, creative projects and development helping VIU learners to move from directed to independent research and creative work.  They inspire, motivate and support student learning, maintain open communication and accessibility to students. They will have encouraged and supported students to share the results of their work as appropriate to the discipline (i.e. publications, presentations, performances) and their efforts will have resulted in transformative learning experiences for VIU graduate students.

Recipient:  Mary O'Neill, Faculty of Education - Nominated by Dr. Marian Riedel

Mary has been an enthusiastic member of VIU's Faculty of Education since 1991 and has seen the department advance in its integration of technology in all curriculum areas. She currently serves as Program Coordinator for the department’s Online Learning & Teaching graduate Diploma (OLTD) program and acts as the liaison for OLTD graduates laddering into the M.Ed. Leadership program. She has supervised numerous graduate student Major Projects and has been a key innovator in online teaching both at post-secondary level, as well as at the K-12 level through the work of program graduates she has mentored.


Early Career Research Excellence Award

This is a university-wide award given to recognize faculty members at the beginning of their academic careers who have demonstrated significant promise in their research program. The award is presented to an outstanding researcher in the first five years of his or her academic career, and who has made an outstanding contribution to scholarly, research and creative activity in their area(s) of expertise.

Recipient:  Dr. Jasmine Janes, Faculty of Science and Technology - Nominated by Dr. Tim Goater

Dr. Jasmine Janes is a Biology professor at VIU. Her current research interests are integrative and multidisciplinary, combining ecological, molecular, and genomic approaches, to answer fundamental questions in evolutionary ecology. She is a recipient of collaborative research grants from BC Ministry of Agriculture and Genome BC to study novel tools to prevent diseases in oysters. Most recently, Jasmine was awarded a prestigious five-year NSERC Discovery Grant to study the coevolutionary interactions between fungi, orchids, and insect pollinators.

Recipient:  Dr. Lindsay McCunn, Faculty of Social Science and Humanities - Nominated by Deborah Matheson

Lindsay McCunn, PhD is a Professor of psychology at VIU and the Director of the Environmental Psychology Research Lab. She chairs the environmental psychology section of the Canadian Psychological Association and is an Associate Editor of the premier journal in her field—the Journal of Environmental Psychology. She is also the Commissioning Editor of the journal Cities and Health. Lindsay’s research in applied psychology has been published in a number of interdisciplinary journals. 

Recipient:  Dr. Shannon Dames, Faculty of Health and Human Services - Nominated by Dr. Patricia O’Hagan

Shannon joined VIU's BSN program as a sessional faculty member in 2013, and a full-time faculty member in 2014. Shannon has worked in various capacities related to nursing over the last 15 years. She has experience in emergency medicine, forensic nursing, and multiple public health programs from front line through management. She pursued her Master in Public Health while working in the United States at Oregon Health and Sciences University and received a doctorate in Adult Education from the University of Calgary with a focus on researching the core factors that promote human (including nurses) ability to thrive. Since completing her doctorate, Shannon frequently serves as a speaker and educator in the area of resilience. She led a team of practitioners to develop an evidence-informed curriculum using experiential methods and communities of practice to develop greater resilience and ultimately to promote human flourishing (Rootstothrive.com). In recognizing that only 20% of those suffering from mental health distress are seeing improvements in the current mental health system, she was awarded a CIHR and other grant and philanthropic funds to forge a new path. Working with six agencies in BC and multiple practitioners and policy makers, she is developing and studying the combination of resilience development and psychedelic-assisted therapies, all delivered within a novel and innovative outpatient mental health model. 


Knowledge Mobilization Award

This is a university-wide award given to recognize faculty members who have demonstrated outstanding effort in communicating research beyond the University resulting in significant impacts in society. This award recognizes the ability of the researcher(s) to facilitate conversations and collaborations with organizations and communities outside the academy, combining knowledge from different spheres of society to generate new ideas.

Recipients:  Antje Bitterberg and Cheryl Cameron, Faculty of Health and Human Services - Nominated by Sheila Grieve

Committed to creating respectful and democratic practices, Antje Bitterberg, a faculty member in our Early Childhood Education and Care Program, has extended her role to include working as a pedagogist in early years settings in our community. As pedagogist, she works alongside children, educators, students, and families by contributing pedagogically to ongoing projects and bringing the British Columbia Early Learning Framework to life. This role is funded by the Ministry of Children and Family Development.

Cheryl Cameron brings a deep appreciation for the arts and thoughtful eye to her work as practicum coordinator with the Early Childhood Education and Care Program and as Atelierista at Lexie's Little Bears Child Care. Cheryl is humbled to be engaging with early years settings in the Cowichan Valley as faculty pedagogist. Inspired by the BC Early Learning Framework, Cheryl connects with communities of practice through reflective thinking, active dialogue and grappling with the complexities of pedagogical choice.


Deans’ Scholarship, Research and Creative Activity Award

This award is given to recognize individual faculty members who have demonstrated outstanding scholarly, research and creative activities (SRCA) achievements and impact on their disciplines during the previous academic year. The Deans in each Faculty can nominate one faculty member each year for this award. Nominations received on the web-based form will be forwarded to the Deans for a determination of the recipient of the award.

Recipient:  Dr. Monica Soth, Faculty of Health and Human Services - Nominated by Dr. Patricia O’Hagan

Monica Soth has been a practicing dental hygiene for over 30 years. She is an experienced researcher, curriculum consultant, administrator, and educator. Monica joined the VIU Dental Hygiene program in 2007 and has served as an educator, clinic lead, and program Chair. She gives back to the profession through service on many provincial, national, and international dental hygiene committees and regulatory organizations. She has presented at provincial and international conferences and serves as a peer-reviewer for an international dental hygiene journal. Monica received her diploma in dental hygiene from Vancouver Community College (1989) and a MEd (2007). In 2020, Monica completed the UBC Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership and Policy (EdD) where she investigated the impact of a quality assurance program on dental hygiene practice in BC.

Recipient: Dr. Mark Williams, Faculty of Social Sciences - Nominated by Dr. Elizabeth Brimacombe

Mark Williams, Professor of Political Studies, is an accomplished scholar and educator. An expert on the foreign economic policy of Indonesia, his academic book on this subject was short-listed for the Weller Prize with the British Columbia Political Science Association. His textbook, The Politics of the Asia-Pacific: An Active Learning Textbook, will be released soon.  He is faculty advisor to VIU’s Model United Nations club and an award-winning teacher who was featured in Shaw TV’s Teachers Above and Beyond Series.


Selection committee: 

Nicole Vaugeois, Chair, SRCA; Joslynn Affleck, Faculty of Science; Mark Williams, Faculty of Social Sciences; Lynda Robinson, Work Integrated Learning (CEL); Elliott Marchant, Faculty of Social Science; Cameron Hoffman McGraw, Library; Louis Mattar, Faculty of Education; Michael Ribicic, Student representative; Susan Juby, Faculty of Arts and Humanities.