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Becoming a Golden Hawk means more than just cheering on our (really good) varsity teams – it means being a student who cares about your community, who works hard in the classroom, and who takes advantage of all the learning opportunities that can happen outside the classroom, too.


Lead Researchers

Dr. Bree Akesson, Associate Professor

Research Director

Bree AkessonBree is an Associate Professor at Wilfrid Laurier University’s Faculty of Social Work. Her research program ranges from micro-level understandings of the experiences of children and families to macro-level projects to strengthen social welfare and mental health systems in crisis-affected countries. For more information, visit Bree’s faculty profile.

 

Karen Frensch, MSc

Research Manager

Karen FrenschKaren is the research manager for the Global Adversity and Wellbeing Research Group. Previously she was the research project manager for the Partnerships for Children and Families Project (2000-2019) in the Faculty of Social Work at Wilfrid Laurier University. She is co-author of the recent book "Necessary but not sufficient: Improving community living for youth after residential mental health programs."

Associates/Affiliates

Nada Alnaji

Nada Alnaji

  • MD, MPH, PhD Candidate, MSIA Program, University of Nebraska Medical Center
  • Research Project: Pregnant in Time of Conflict: Assessing Postpartum Depression Among Refugees in Low Resource Settings

Andrew R. Basso

Andrew Basso

  • PhD, University of Calgary
  • SSHRCC Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for Transitional Justice and the Department of Political Science at the University of Western Ontario

Samia El Joueidi

Lebanon Research Liaison

 Samia El Joueidi

  • Master of Public Health
  • COVID-19 Research Coordinator, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia

Alhasnaa Keftaro

Lebanon Field Researcher

 

  • Educational Management and Leadership
  • American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon

Ila Schoop Rutten

Digital Campaigns Manager

Ila Schoop Rutten

  • Master of Human Rights and Humanitarian Action at Sciences Po, Paris

Students

Shreya Acharya

Research Assistant

Shreya Acharya

  • MSW Candidate, Wilfrid Laurier University

Averi Augier

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Averi Augier

  • BSW Candidate, Wilfrid Laurier University

Ramy Barhouche

Senior Research Assistant

Ramy Barhouche

  • PhD Candidate in Community Psychology, Wilfrid Laurier University
  • Master of Nonprofit Management, MA in Conflict & Dispute Resolution

Ali Diebold

Senior Research Assistant

Ali Diebold
  • PhD Candidate in Social Work, Wilfrid Laurier University
  • MSW, RSW, TITC-CT

Nadia Khan 

Research Assistant

  • MSW Candidate, Wilfrid Laurier University

Christine Khalil

Research Assistant

  • MA Community Psychology Candidate, Wilfrid Laurier University

Saranki Sivan

Research Assistant

 Siranki Sivan

  • MSW Candidate, Wilfrid Laurier University

Alumni

Dena Badawi

Research Assistant

Dena Badawi

  • Master of Science in Global Health, McMaster University

Patrick Ciaschi

Senior Research Assistant

Patrick Ciaschi

  • PhD Candidate, Politics, New School for Social Research
  • MA International Relations, McMaster University

Kearney Coupland

Senior Research Assistant

Kearney Coupland

  • PhD Candidate in Geography and Environmental Studies, Wilfrid Laurier University
  • Master of Landscape Architecture, University of Guelph

Lauren Hawthorne

Research Assistant

Lauren Hawthorne

  • Master of Science in Global Health, MSW, Wilfrid Laurier University

Esther Herschberger

Research Assistant

Esther Herschberger

  • MSW Candidate, University of Toronto

Contact Us:

Bree Akesson, Associate Professor, Faculty of Social Work

E: bakesson@wlu.ca

Karen Frensch, Research Manager, Global Adversity and Wellbeing Research Group

E: kfrensch@wlu.ca

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