Alumni: Where Are They Now?

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Our graduates have gone on to many different professions or academic pursuits, such as: professional schools (ie. dentristry, law, medicine), police agencies (eg. RCMP, Peel Police), lab work (eg. Centre of Forensic Sciences), and academic teaching/research. Below are some interviews with our graduates. 

Want to be a part of the UTM Forensic Science Alumni Project? Contact Murray Clayton for more information on how you can be a part of inspiring young scientists!

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Forensic
Anthropology
Forensic
Biology
Forensic
Chemistry
Forensic
Psychology
Forensic
Science Major
Daniella Stoewner Adrian Chow Agata Gapinska Rahul Gandotra Sandeep Randhawa
Caitlin Pakosh Cherry Pun Cameron Power Amanda Heather Merk
Clayton Asano Rachel Rudolf Navina   Rebekah Jacques
Jessica Lam Monique Johnson      
Meadow Libby        
Michael Ho        
Andrea        
         
         

 

 

Interviews with our Graduates

 

Amanda Marie Ferrari, HBSc Forensic Psychology (with High Distinction)

Amanda

As of 2019, Amanda is a Forensic Identification Assistant with York Regional Police. Within this role, she liaises with investigators to obtain relevant information regarding the scene and develop a course of action to search, document, collect and preserve evidence. These high volume crime scenes include but are not limited to break and enter (residential and commercial), stolen/recovered vehicles, thefts, assaults and warrant executions.

Why did you choose to pursue forensic science?

At a very young age I had a passion for science and law.  As I progressed through my academic studies I had developed a very keen interest in criminal investigations and science, particularly in biology and psychology. In my third year of university, I took an array of forensic identification courses, which further solidified my combined passion for both science and the law.  

What have been some of your favourite experiences as a member of the forensic community?

Some of my favourite experiences as a member of the forensic science community include forensic night photography, out-reach community presentations and my internship with Toronto Police Service.  In my third year, while taking the introduction to forensic identification course, students were provided with the opportunity to partake in a night photography session to refine their skills. Students were given hands-on experience of camera use and it’s various settings in order to capture as much of the scene as possible.  This session gave students a chance to work collectively in teams, build connections and have fun! During my third and fourth year of university, I volunteered alongside a retired Forensic Identification Officer and current lecturer, Mr. Wade Knaap, to give presentations to high school and university students, as well as professionals in similar disciplines to enhance their understanding of the forensic science discipline. Within my fourth year of university, I was able to gain real-world research experience by working as a co-op research student with the Toronto Police Service- Forensic Identification Unit. I compared three chemical enhancement techniques in recovering latent fingerprint impressions from unfired cartridges. Although this research experience came with a rollercoaster of emotions and deadlines, I can honestly say that it did pay off in the end!

What is your fondest memory of your UofT experience?

My fondest memory of my UofT experience was in my third year working at the crime scene house and having the deer photo bomb my outdoor scene photos!

Any words of advice for up and coming FSc students

Although UofT is one of the many universities that now offers a degree in forensic science, my advice to anyone hoping to pursue a career in the field would be to obtain a degree in a core science. Forensic science is a very competitive field with limited opportunities for employment, however, if you are determined, focused and driven enough many career paths are available to you. I encourage many students to volunteer, gain experience in a laboratory environment and network as much as possible to enhance their academic and practical skills.

Any other accomplishments or interesting information you'd like to share:

After graduation, I was fortunate enough to have published my research article within the Identification Canada- The Art and Science of Forensic Identification issue.  In October of 2018, I underwent mental and physical testing for a Special Constable certification and met the standards required by Applicant Testing Services. Recently landing my position as a Forensic Identification Assistant, I participated in an intensive three-week Scenes of Crime Officer training course and met the specialized requirements.

 

Navina Lotay, HBSc Forensic Chemistry, Minor in Biology

Navina

Navina is currently a masters student at U of T, pursuing her MSc in analytical chemistry. Her research involves using acoustic wave devices and a dual protein system to detect lysophosphatidic acid, a biomarker for ovarian cancer. Ideally, if this technology works, it could be used as an early detection method for ovarian cancer. Ovarian cancer is difficult to diagnose due to the commonality of its symptoms, and early detection is critical to patient survival.

Why did you choose to pursue forensic science?

I actually didn’t know I wanted to pursue forensics at first. In grade 12 I had no idea what I wanted to do, and actually applied to a variety of programs at eight (8!!) different schools. The programs I applied to were both pure science and application driven things like forensics. I recall falling in love with the UTM campus when I visited, but still not knowing what I wanted to do in university or where I wanted to go. My acceptance letter to the forensics program was the last one I received, and as soon as I got it I realized it was the one I had been waiting for and the one I was most excited about. I think forensics especially appealed to me because it was a clear way to use science to serve the community.

I’ve always been better at things that involve direct application. Forensic science interested me because it was a way to learn pure science with a specific application, which gave more of a perspective on why the things I was learning were important. With a general chemistry program, I was worried that the concepts would be very broad and abstract, and therefore harder to wrap my head around. Having a specific purpose really focused my learning and gave me a context in which to frame these slightly abstract concepts. I also loved that the program wasn’t so narrow that I was limited in my options if I decided later on that I didn’t want to continue in forensics. I was able to pursue something I enjoyed at the time, experience things I otherwise wouldn’t have (like crime scene documentation and evidence testing), and yet my degree still gave me all the background knowledge to pursue graduate school in a pure science field.

What have been some of your favourite experiences as a member of the forensic community?

My favourite experience as a member of the forensic community was definitely my summer job working at the Centre of Forensic Sciences as a lab assistant in the chemistry section. It gave me real exposure into what working in a forensic lab would be like and reassured me that the path I chose is still something I enjoy and find interesting. I think my favourite part of that summer was helping to prepare and execute the homemade explosives workshop that CFS runs every year. This workshop is used to train police services such as OPP on recent trends in the use of homemade explosives and helps them practice using the equipment that is needed in these types of situations. I got to synthesize explosives for demonstration purposes and see police in their full bomb suit gear, and it was an experience I’ll never forget.

What is your fondest memory of your UofT experience?

One of my fondest memories at U of T is also probably one of the most stressful, but it’s studying in the library with friends. There were so many days and nights that we spent at the UTM library studying, laughing, eating, and going for coffee breaks together. Lots of moments in study rooms, talking through concepts and writing on white boards. There’s no bond stronger than the one that comes from suffering through studying for a final exam together.

Any words of advice for up and coming FSc students:

In general, don’t forget to enjoy life while you’re in university. Looking back, I wish I had fought to have more of a balance between my school/work life and personal life. It’s okay to take an evening off, it’s okay to accept that you’re not in a productive mood and watch TV instead, the world won’t end if you do. I personally didn’t realize exactly how stressed I was until I finished university, and one of the things I really wish I’d done was take more time to relax with friends and family. Letting school take over your entire life for 4 years is definitely not a good idea, even though it’s easy to slip into that habit.

Additionally, if you have any interest in graduate school, try doing research before the internship in 4th year. Look at the research that professors in your department are doing and find a group you’re interested in. Apply for an ROP to get course credit or simply ask if you can volunteer in someone’s lab. Not only does this help you figure out if research is something you would enjoy and excel at, but it provides you with practical research skills that give you a head start in graduate school. I wish someone had told me how much this would have helped me!

Any other accomplishments or interesting information you'd like to share:

I went to an arts-focused high school where I majored in music theatre, which people tend to think is odd considering I went into a science degree afterwards. I was at the top of the FSC chem specialist students in both my third and fourth years at UTM, and was a TA for JCP221 during my fourth year. After graduating, I decided to take a year off to work and relax. I held a summer position at CFS as a lab assistant in the chemistry section, where I was able to gain insight into how forensic labs work and obtained a lot of practical experience with forensic techniques like FTIR for polymer analysis and GRIM for glass analysis. After this position ended, I was a TA for CHM211 and I tutored high school students in science and math. I also got a job at Indigo Books & Music, a place I’ve always loved. I successfully interviewed for a position in the talent pool for the Centre Receiving Office at CFS but decided to pursue graduate school instead. I love to travel, and during my year off I went to Italy, Ottawa, and Vancouver, along with a bunch of smaller weekend and day trips. This year I’m going to Las Vegas, Spain, and Portugal. I hope that my graduate studies will help me on my career path towards being an R&D chemist and/or a forensic chemist.

 

Andrea Chan, MD, MA, HBSc (Specialty in Forensic Anthropology, Psychology Minor)

Andrea Chan

"I am a 2005 graduate from the University of Mississauga’s Forensic Science and Anthropology Departments. After graduating from UTM, I completed my Masters’ degree in Forensic and Dental Anthropology under the supervision of Dr. Shelley Saunders at McMaster University. At McMaster, I had a privilege of meeting Dr. Dennis Willms and was introduced to the field of medical anthropology. I worked for his charitable organization Salama SHIELD Foundation (SSF), which focuses on implementing sustainable behavior change solutions through participatory action in the context of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Uganda. Medical anthropology drew me to the field of medicine. For me, the fields of anthropology and medicine have been effortlessly confluent. The recognition of this interplay between health and sickness, and the political, economic and social structures that affect patient outcomes has made me a better clinician, and ultimately has helped me treat the patients I work for. After my time with SSF, I completed my medical degree and my orthopaedic surgery residency training at the University of Toronto. Currently, I am finishing up my sub-specialty hand and upper extremity fellowship training in London Ontario at the Roth|McFarlane Hand and Upper Limb Centre, and will complement this with pediatric upper extremity fellowship training at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital."

 

 Meadow Libby, HBSc (Specialty in Forensic Anthropology, Psychology Minor)

Meadow Libby
Meadow practicing her photography skills during a training exercise. 

 
Meadow completed her undergraduate studies at UTM in 2017 with an Honours Bachelor of Science in Forensic Anthropology. During her studies, Meadow was employed as a Provincial Offences Officer and a Communications Officer with the Niagara Parks Police. She also volunteers as a Medical First Responder on the UTM's campus response team, ECSpeRT. In her final year of her undergrad, Meadow completed an internship in the Identification section of Peel Regional Police researching the transfer of gunshot residue from police officers and a policing environment onto arrested subjects. 
 
Currently, Meadow is a Special Constable with the Hamilton Police Service in the position of a Forensic Services Assistant. She is a civilian member of the force stationed out of the Forensic Identification division of Hamilton Police. Meadow has taken the Scenes of Crime Officer course mandated by the Ontario Police College, and with that and her background education in forensics, she attends calls for service within Hamilton that require a forensic component such as break and enters, sudden deaths, robberies, and more. Meadow is also available to assist the Identification Officers with tasks they may assign her under their direct supervision.
 
Why did you choose to pursue forensic science?
I always had the intentions of entering the law enforcement field, however in high school I had a strong interest in the sciences and forensics was the perfect combination of the two. 
 
What have been some of your favourite experiences as a member of the forensic community?
I really enjoy that I see something new everyday at my job and that the field of forensics is constantly evolving allowing for never ending learning opportunities. 
 
What is your fondest memory of your UofT experience?
My forensic anthropology field school was one of the most memorable experiences I had at UTM. The course was designed to be as close to a real case as possible, and it allowed for me to use everything I learned in my anthropology courses as well as my IDENT courses in one setting. Putting everything together was very challenging but rewarding to use what you learned in the classroom in a hands-on setting. The work in field school is very similar to what I do for a living now and I am still blown away that I found a career that was so similar to what I studied in university. 
 
Any words of advice for up and coming FSc students:
Don't be afraid to be hands-on in your studies and to ask questions. You can only learn so much from reading and studying. The forensics program provides so many opportunities to apply what you learn in lecture and from textbooks in a life-like setting and its very important to take advantage of it. Practice your photography, your fingerprinting techniques, go to open labs and use as much of the time offered to you as possible to develop your skills and confidence.
 
Meadow
 

 Michael Ho, HBSc (Specialty in Forensic Anthropology)Michael Ho
Michael practicing his photography skills during a training exercise. 

Michael graduated from the UTM Forensic Science program in 2018 with an Honours Bachelor of Science in Forensic Anthropology. During his undergraduate studies, Michael worked for Canada Border Services Agency. In his last year of his undergraduate degree Michael had an internship placement at York Regional Police. His research at York Regional Police looked at the use of liquid latex for fingerprint recovery on the exterior surface of vehicles and is currently undergoing the publication process with the International Association of Identification (IAI).

Currently Michael is employed as a Forensic Special Constable with Hamilton Police Service and has completed Scenes of Crime Officer training. His role consists of forensic photography, vehicle examination, fingerprint recovery, DNA collection, and exhibit collection.

Monique Johnson, MSc, HBSc, (Specialty in Forensic Biology, Anthropology Minor)

MoniqueMonique is a Research Technologist at the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids).

"Although I didn’t study Forensic Anthropology, the socio-cultural and biological anthropology courses I took helped give me a greater understanding of forensic science that helped me during my masters. The ability to have an open mind and holistic views on why people have certain behaviors that stem from their cultural background is very important. Whether it is studying population genetics to determine likelihood ratios useful for DNA testing or being mindful of cultural practices that need consideration before autopsies can be performed. It also brings awareness to how certain socio-economic issues tie in to areas that may experience higher incidents of criminal activity. I enjoyed studying Anthropology as it is a discipline that helps a person understand themselves and the society the live in, relative to the rest of the world. It then allows you to take that understanding to make positive changes in the world around you.

I currently work as Research Technologist in the Department of Pediatric Medicine at SickKids. My team is responsible for diagnostic cancer research looking at various subtypes of brain tumours. We optimize and validate different assays that can be used to detect multiple genetic mutations in solid tumours. My work focuses on low- and high-grade gliomas, but I am also developing a non-invasive liquid biopsy assay for use with CSF and plasma. Although I’m working in cancer research, my degree in Anthropology helped to get me here because it gave me the mind set to think critically about what I’m researching and how the outcome can affect the people around me."

 Caitlin Pakosh, HBSC, JD (Specialty in Forensic Anthropology, Biology Minor)

Caitlin Pakosh

Forensic Science & The Law In Canada professor and alum Caitlin Pakosh.

Caitlin Pakosh is an Assistant Crown Attorney in Hamilton with experience researching and writing about the intersection between forensic science and criminal law, most notably in her award-winning book featuring thirty-three expert contributors, “The Lawyer’s Guide to the Forensic Sciences” (Irwin Law, 2016). Before joining the Ministry of the Attorney General, Caitlin opened her own criminal defence firm after working for several years at Innocence Canada as its Senior Staff Lawyer. Caitlin was called to the Bar in Ontario in June 2012 after receiving her law degree from the University of Calgary in 2011. She is a proud graduate of UTM’s forensic science program, having graduated in 2008 specializing in forensic anthropology with a minor in biology.

 

 Daniella Stoewner, HBSc (Specialty in Forensic Anthropology)Daniella Stoewner
Daniella on scene with FARO 3D capture technology.

Daniella is now a 3D Forensic Technologist at ai2-3D Forensics based in Vaughan, Ontario. The company is contracted to assist in casework by reconstructing criminal events in 3D for forensic scientists, law enforcement agencies, legal professionals, and other relevant bodies across North America. They also provide training and support for the use of laser scanners, hand scanners, photogrammetry, and related software. ai2-3D is also involved with ongoing research in areas such as laser scanning technology, bullet trajectory analysis, bloodstain pattern analysis, and forensic pattern analysis.

Why did you choose to pursue forensic science? 
My passion for science and its applicability in creating a better society. The field of forensics is so broad that I knew I would not be limited or constrained in what I studied, and I knew that I would be able to help others in the process.

I was fortunate enough to be given the opportunity to come back to UTM to co-teach the fourth year FSC406 course, Introduction to 3D Crime Scene Mapping & Reconstruction. I had a wonderful experience lecturing and designing practical assignments for the students to learn. I’d love to come back and teach again!

What have been some of your favourite experiences as a member of the forensic community?
Discovering things through research and casework that were previously unknown to others. We make discoveries and learn something new everyday. As someone who thoroughly enjoyed my university career, being able to continue my education during work hours has been extremely rewarding. I’ve also been given the amazing opportunity to travel for research, training, conferences, and casework. Everyday is different!

What is your fondest memory of your UofT experience? 
Completing the Forensic Anthropology field school and being able to assist in real casework shortly thereafter. As an undergraduate, assisting on a real case was a dream come true.

Any words of advice for up and coming FSc students?
Get involved! Network! Stay active in the forensic community! The worldwide forensic science community is relatively small – take advantage of the ability to make lasting connections by assisting in research, attending conferences, and volunteering whenever possible.

 


 

 Rebekah Jacques, HB.Sc., M.D., F.R.C.P.C (AP&FP)

 

Rebekah Jacques

About Rebekah's undergraduate direction:

The specialty program had not yet been implemented when I was enrolled into the forensic program at UTM, though I did graduate with a double major in forensic science and biology and a minor in anthropology. 

Why did you choose to pursue forensic science?
I thought this would be a great undergraduate course to prepare me to become a forensic pathologist. I am now a Forensic Pathologist and Investigating Coroner.

What have been some of your favourite experiences as a member of the forensic community?
As a forensic pathologist, I have enjoyed arriving at the truth of the matter to assist other stakeholders in our system.

What is your fondest memory of your UofT experience?
The library! I was able to achieve the best ideas studying in the library. 

Any words of advice for up and coming FSc students:
Find your passion, model success and try to maintain your curiosity about your pursuit of knowledge as you proceed throughout your career.

 


 

Jessica Lam, HBSc, MSc (Specialty in Forensic Anthropology and Biology)

Jessica Lam

Jessica Lam standing in the Terrence Donnelly Health Sciences Complex.

Jessica Lam graduated from the UTM Forensic Science program in 2012 with an Honour’s Bachelor of Science degree in forensic anthropology and biology. During the last three years of her undergraduate studies, Jessica was the President of the UTM Forensics Society which she formally established as a recognized Academic Society by the UTM Student Union (UTMSU) in 2010.

In 2013, Jessica continued her studies at UTM and completed a Master of Science degree in Anthropology a year later, under the supervision of Dr. Tracy Rogers. Jessica’s research projects during this time combined skeletal age estimation methods with various 3D technologies to facilitate the analytical process. Throughout her studies, Jessica has worked in Greece, Portugal, and Japan for research and academic purposes. Jessica has also been active in forensic casework as a field technician across southern Ontario since 2011.

Recently, Jessica was one of ten successful candidates in the world who were accepted into the INTREPID Forensics program at the University of Leicester (United Kingdom). There, she will be fulfilling a fully-funded PhD researcher position in Engineering/Pathology under Dr. Sarah Hainsworth and Dr. Guy Rutty. Although Jessica will be based out of the University of Leicester, she will also be undergoing a research secondment at the University of Padova in Italy. Jessica will begin her three-year PhD at the University of Leicester in January 2015.

Jessica was the Public Outreach Administrator for the UTM Forensic Science program from 2012 – 2014, and also completed a work-study term at the Royal Ontario Museum in 2014. She assisted with the 24th Educational Training Conference hosted by the Toronto Police Services, and was involved with the conference organization committee for the 2014 Canadian Identification Society Conference. Jessica has also worked as a piano teacher for eight years.

Click here to read more about Jessica's undergraduate and graduate experience.

Follow Jessica's personal INTREPID journey and experience by clicking here.

 


 

 Rachel Rudolf and Clayton AsanoPolice College Convocation 2012

November 2012 - Rachel Rudolf (left), and Clayton Asano (right) at the convocation ceremony for the Ontario Police College, standing with Brent Walker (middle), a retired forensic identification officer and former UTM instructor.

Rachel graduated from UTM in 2009 with an Honours Bachelor of Science in Forensic Science – Biology Specialist. In 2011 she received her Master’s Degree in Forensic Science from the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland. She has worked as a Forensic Identification Assistant with the RCMP, and recently got hired as a Police Constable with York Regional Police. One of Rachel’s future goals is to be part of the Forensic Identification Unit with York Regional Police.

Clayton graduated from UTM in 2011 as a Forensic Anthropology Specialist and Biology Minor. Clayton has returned to UTM since his graduation as an occasional guest speaker for the UTM Forensics Society. He has now been hired by Peel Regional Police.

 


 

Cameron Power (HBSc, Specialy in Forensic Chemistry)

Cameron Power

Forensic Technologist, Forensic Toxicology Section, Centre of Forensic Sciences (as of Dec 2014)

  • My first interest with the field of forensic science came about due to the CSI effect.  Like a lot of individuals the initial release of the television show CSI drew a large interest with the field of forensics.  It didn’t take me long to realize that forensic science is not truly what they portray on TV.  There are some similarities but there are a lot of differences.  Having done research into the field I was not deterred in any way by realizing it is not like the hit TV show CSI.  As I made my way through high school I realized that science was one of my fortes.  With this in mind, and my previous knowledge of the field of forensics, I couldn’t think of a better way to apply my scientific knowledge than to the judicial system.

  • When it came time to apply for schools that had a forensics program it ultimately came down to either UTM or the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT). Both had their sets of pros and cons, but when it came down to deciding, U of T is a world renowned university with an established forensics program when compared to UOIT.  As difficult as the decision was to make, UTM was definitely the right choice.

  • Since graduating in the summer of 2013, I have been fortunate enough to secure a job at the Centre of Forensic Sciences.  I initially started out as a summer student in 2013 with the chemistry section.  From there I proceeded to become a contract lab attendant with the chemistry section before securing fulltime position with the toxicology section as their lab attendant.  Since then I have continued to move forward and I am currently a Forensic Technologist with the toxicology section.  Though it has been a fast journey to become a technologist, I am still looking forward to reaching my ultimate goal of becoming a scientist within the Centre.

  • My undergrad degree at UTM definitely benefitted me.  Throughout the program I was provided with a number of different opportunities to network with a wide range of professionals within the forensics field.  The staff are knowledgeable experts within their designated field and are always willing to assist and put in the time to help you succeed.  Throughout my undergrad I gained a wide range of professional training such as interviews, presentations, and research which has helped me prepare and get me to where I am today.

  • In part with the many professionals willing to assist me when needed, the internship course was the most valuable aspect of my undergraduate career.  Throughout this course I was able to network with a range of forensic professional with whom I am still in contact.  It also provided me with a much better understanding and a good back bone for conducting good research while following all the proper procedures and protocols.  The internship portion of the program also allowed for me to work first hand with professionals within their fields.  This was an excellent opportunity for me to continue to gain an understanding of different areas of forensics and what different professionals do on a daily basis.  Lastly, and most importantly, this program helped develop me as a professional through aspects such as interviews and presentations.

  • The faculty and instructors at UTM were excellent.  They are all professionals within their field which allows for students to receive first hand training specific to their field of study.  Not only are they professionals, but they are all willing to assist students and graduates in whatever way possible, whether it be course related or professional development.

  • Ultimately I could not be where I am today without my undergraduate experience.  I gained a vast amount of knowledge through my four years and was able to connect with a wide range of professionals that were all able to assist me in a different way.

 


 

Simon Liu
H.BSc. Forensic Chemistry Specialist, 2012

Simon Liu

Forensic Identification Assistant, York Regional Police (as of Sep, 2014) 

 

Simon graduated UTM's Forensic Chemistry Specialist Program in 2012. He remains active in the forensic science community and has secured employment in his field as a Forensic Identification Assistant for York Regional Police.

 

  • I was initially interested in forensic science because I wanted to be in a field where I can apply scientific concepts in a practical way. As well, when I was young, I liked to solve puzzles and read crime stories, so I wanted to be in a career where I can apply my interests in a scientific way.
  • I chose the Forensic Science program at UTM because I initially wanted to go to the University of Toronto due to its award winning researchers, education and facilities. As well, the Forensic Science program at UTM was the first in Canada, with many internship opportunities where we students can participate. During my visit at the Ontario Universities Fair, the one aspect that interested me for choosing this program was the presence of a specific coordinator that helps students look for internship opportunities based on our interests, instead of the students doing it alone. This feature was something that not all universities have. UTM is the only university in Mississauga as well, compared to the many universities that existed in Toronto. I foresaw that there would be plenty of growth and expansion from city funding and other sources, thus enriching the program. As well, the program is rooted in one of the most prestigious schools in Canada; interaction with a lot of forensic professionals was easier and gaining the necessary networks in employment possible.
  • I am currently employed as a Forensic Identification Assistant at the York Regional Police. I was recently employed in many government organizations including the Canadian Coast Guard College, Passport Canada, Ontario Ministry of the Environment, and Service Canada. I am planning to continue in this career, hopefully advancing to more senior positions along the way. However, I am always looking for new opportunities to contribute in the field. 

  • The undergraduate degree in Forensic Science had benefitted me because it provided a dual path for me to choose from, either in the empirical science that I was specialized in or the forensics field. This allowed me to open more doors to different opportunities.  As well, when you graduate from the University of Toronto, it makes you more competitive in the job market. This degree ensures that you know how to solve problems in any situation, have the appropriate presentation, thinking, and meticulous approach skills that are essential to any employment opportunity that you may encounter. Through the internship experience, I was able to land my first forensic interview, and publish my first journal article, which benefitted me in my career goals.

  • The most valuable aspect of my undergraduate careers was the social interaction in the campus. This included the UTM Forensic Society. It is through this society that I was involved with many projects in the department such as the Murder Mystery Dinner, volunteering at the Crime Scene House, Meet and Greet Night with the TAs and professors, that I was able to know the faculty, instructors, the department and other students in the program. It is also through this social interaction that I was able to meet good friends. As well, I found out that I excelled in the accounting aspect of the forensics society and able to think of future projects which contribute back to the department The social interaction with the instructors was important because it allows me to be passionate about the field and to discover my career goals after I graduated.

  • I travel two hours each way, with a total of 4 hours for a round trip to UTM every day. I would not be able to endure it for 4 years if it was not for the passionate faculty and instructors. The faculty and instructors were very accommodating in terms of office hours. If I email them in terms of any hours outside of their designated time, they were willing to accommodate it, with many choices for me to choose from. As well, their doors are always open, so if you have any last minute questions, they would answer them right away with no difficulty. Since UTM is one of the smaller campuses, there are fewer students so you get to know the faculty and instructors a lot more. As well, they are really passionate about their jobs, so they are willing to stay after hours during exam season to make sure that you do well in the course. They offer plenty of resources to understand the material and spark innovation in the content through materials, online tools, and extra office hours to keep us going through the course. This allowed me to see the different career paths that I can take after I graduate. The instructors are all from the field, from forensic pathologists to Forensic Identification officers. they able to bring their real-life experience in the lectures, making the education much more relevant and practical.

  • The UTM Forensic program was a great program with great instructors, faculty, and a vast social, professional network. I did not regret of my decision of choosing this program, and thank you to all the people in the faculty and instructors that I had which have fostered my career goals.

 


Adrian Chow

Adrian Chow
H.BSc. Forensic Biology Specialist, 2012                 
                      
Clinical Research Assistant, SickKids Hospital
Patient Care Assistant, Toronto General Hospital (as of Sep, 2012)

 

After completing his degree in forensic biology, Adrian Chow was hired by the Ontario Science Centre for the summer and began his full-time work at the Toronto General Hospital in September, along with a clinical research placement at SickKids Hospital. He plans to take the year off to work before applying to a Master's program in physiotherapy and/or a Doctorate in chiropractic.

  • I always grew up reading 'murder mysteries' and 'whodunit' stories. Ever since I was young, I had an interest in piecing together different clues to solve the crime and to catch the culprit. My dream occupation was always to become a detective when I grew up.
  • Not many universities in Canada offer a forensic science program. I chose UTM because their forensic science program was the first to be established in Canada, thus had a long standing reputation behind it. The forensic science program at UTM also has great internship placement opportunities, where fourth year students are placed with a forensic agency to perform research in one of the many forensic related disciplinary areas.
  • I believe that my degree in forensic science has benefitted me because I have both learned and experienced a lot in regards to the forensic world, whether it is through lectures or hands-on laboratory experiences. The professors and lecturers all are well versed in this area and are extremely knowledgeable and insightful. Although I am no longer pursuing forensic science as a career, the courses I have taken still allow me to pursue a career in healthcare.
  • The most valuable aspect of my undergraduate career was the social interaction with my peers. Throughout my four years at UTM, I was part of the Erindale College Special Response Team (ECSpeRT). Trained as medical first responders, we provided first aid coverage for the members of the campus, as well as weekend events. I got to meet a lot of new people outside my program as well as learn a lot of other things. In my last year I was also part of the Forensic Society (IVNVI). There we helped introduced peers to the world of forensic science. We hosted charity events and went out for socials.
  • All the faculty and instructors were extremely knowledgeable, approachable and insightful. They all possess experiences in the forensic world and each have a different background. We have been taught by police officers, pathologists, anthropologists, entomologists, toxicologists, engineers, and psychologists, each bringing their own knowledge and experiences into the lectures.
  • I would highly recommend this program to any students interested in the forensic science field. You do not necessarily have to pursue a career in forensics in order to enrol in the program. The courses you take will both be broad and specific in regards to the forensic context, thus this degree will allow you to open many doors, avenues and allow you to pursue many different career paths.

 


Cherry Pun

Cherry Pun
H.BSc. Forensic Biology Specialist, 2012

Forensic Services Technologist, Provincial Forensic Pathology Unit
Ontario Forensic Pathology Service (as of Oct 2012)

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Rahul Gandotra

Rahul Gandotra
H.BSc. Forensic Psychology Double Major, 2012                 
                      
JD Candidate, Law student
University of Western Ontario (as of July, 2013)

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Sandeep Randhawa

Sandeep Randhawa
H.BSc. Forensic Science & Biology Double Major, 2011

M.S. Candidate in Biology - Oral Biology, New York University (as of Oct 2012)

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Agata Gapinska-Serwin, H.BSc. Forensic Chemistry Specialist, 200

Agata Gapinska-Serwin
H.BSc. Forensic Chemistry Specialist, 2008                
 

Agata is the Laboratory Technician for Forensic Science & Chemistry at the University of Toronto Mississauga.

Agata Gapinska-Serwin

Agata Gapinska-Serwin is a graduate of the forensic chemistry program, and is currently working at the University of Toronto Mississauga as a laboratory technician. Specifically, she is in charge of the forensic identification labs as well as second-year chemistry labs. Agata is extremely happy with her current position, describing it as the "perfect marriage of my original career paths: chemistry, forensics and education."

  • (When asked why she was initially interested in forensic science): It was the opportunity to bring the physical sciences/chemistry to a real world setting.
     
  • The Forensic Science undergraduate program, at that time, was the only one available in Ontario. It was established with the help of the Centre of Forensic Sciences so I knew it was of high quality and calibre. Likewise, it was offered through the University of Toronto, which is a respected university. I knew that taking that program at UTM would set me up for the future.
     
  • I believe my undergraduate degree in forensic sciences has benefitted me because it opened up two distinct pathways - one in the sciences, and one in forensics/police - or something that is a combination of both.
  • In my opinion, the most valuable aspect of my undergraduate career was the labs. It made it a practical course, and provided hands-on experience. Lectures, theories and textbooks are foundations to a great education but the practical labs brought the learning to life.
  • I was very impressed with the faculty and instructors. They were all currently working and excelling in their field. It was great to hear about their cases and related experiences. I had a lot of respect for them as they were truly passionate about their career.

 

Heather Merk

Heather Merk
H.BSc. Forensic Science & Biology, 2004

The Syngenta Breeding Academy, Professional Development (as of March 2015)

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