The Office of the Vice-Principal, Research, is located at the following address:
University of Toronto Mississauga
3359 Mississauga Road
Mississauga, Ontario L5L 1C6
Carla DeMarco resisted her calling to hit the stage as the lead singer in a ska band, and opted instead to make some noise at the University of Toronto. The Research Office isn't her first gig at the University of Toronto, but it is the place where she gets to combine her three favourite Rs: ‘riting, reviewing and researching.
As the Communications and Grants Manager for the Office of the Vice-Principal, Research, Carla reviews grant proposal applications and researches potential funding opportunities, writes research-related profiles, and updates the Research Office's communication vehicles. Along the way she gets to interview some amazing faculty members to hear about their research, speaking one-on-one with them about their respective projects, and she also facilitates research-award nominations.
Carla started her career at OISE in 1990, working switchboard while completing her undergraduate degree in Cinema Studies and English at U of T. She went on to work at the U of T Magazine as a Magazine Assistant and Editorial Coordinator, and also did some writing for the Bulletin and Advancement Communications (now Strategic Communications) at U of T. Having been at UTM since 2006, she loves the collegial and supportive vibe of the campus, and when she isn’t working in the Research Office or working out at the RAWC, she likes talking about books with the UTMost Book Club.
Research Communications & Grants Manager
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Veron Fernandes joined the UTM Research Office in January 2020 as Office Administrator. She is the main point of contact for the office in the Health Sciences Complex and coordinates many OVPR efforts including scheduling, events’ assistance, overseeing our ethics committee, producing research reports, and disseminating information.
She has worked for the U of T Mississauga since 2010 supporting the university community in roles involving admissions, recruitment, and program coordination.
Veron is a travel enthusiast, having had the opportunity to explore 45+ countries she has a deep appreciation for international cuisine, art, and culture.
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People often comment on Devin Kreuger’s youthful glow, but he is actually a seasoned professional with several years of research-administration experience under his belt.
Devin started his career at the University of Toronto as a Contracts Officer in the Technology Transfer Office in 1999, and then served as the Social Sciences & Humanities Partnerships and Grants Officer in Research Services, before he was poached by UTM as its Research Manager in 2003 with the establishment of the Research Office. Devin is now the Director of the unit, and oversees a thriving research environment, providing strategic leadership to researchers looking for guidance for their research matters, and also supervising units, such as the Academic Machine Shop, to provide faculty members with exceptional resources to help them succeed in their projects.
Outside of the Research Office, Devin spends his time perfecting his photography skills, knitting, gaming and reading. He is also UTM’s tarot card-reader extraordinaire, setting up shop once a year to read people’s fortunes, with acute accuracy, while also donating the proceeds to United Way. (See the “Off the Clock” feature about Devin’s tarot talents.)
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Professor Kent Moore's research is in Physics in UTM's Department of Chemical & Physical Sciences. He focuses on investigating climate change and meteorology, using theoretical, computational, and observational techniques to understand the dynamics of the climate system so as to improve the ability to place currently observed changes to the climate in a long-term context. He is also an entrepreneur and has been involved in start-ups and investments.
Professor Kent Moore, PhD
Vice Principal, Research
Professor of Physics
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Rong Wu’s career path has education and technology written all over it, bringing with her a whole new level of learning and experience to the UTM Research Office. As the Internal Competitions & Events Coordinator, Rong oversees internal funding competitions, internal awards and the coordination of Research Office events.
A U of T Master of Information Studies graduate, Rong was the Program Assistant for the Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation on the St. George campus and was also employed at the Centre of Excellence for Research on Immigration and Settlement prior to joining the Research Office. Rong also served as the Learning Technology Liaison at Ryerson University, providing training for educational technologies such as Blackboard, Wiki, Tablets and Clicker, and she has worked at the Toronto Public Library.
True to her academic nature, Rong enjoys learning every chance she gets outside of the university, whether it’s through activities she undertakes with her two young children, or taking up new skills in the areas of crafting or baking.
Internal Competitions & Events Coordinator
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Since joining the University of Toronto Mississauga in 2005, Peter Duggan combines his innovative and previous industry experience and knowledge in machining, wood working, mechanics and electronics to support the UTM Research Department: by taking concepts and ideas and bringing them to reality with the right materials for practical use. He was instrumental in the shop's purchase of its CNC machine in 2009.
Outside of work, Peter spends his personal time with his family and friends. He is an ice hockey goalie and spends a great deal of his time at a rink. He enjoys time in his home workshop building different projects.
Supervisor: Peter Duggan
Tel. 905 828-5327
Location: DV 1004
Xin Zhao started her second career and life anew in Canada beginning in the year 2000 as a research technician at University of Toronto’s St. George campus. With more than 13 years research experience in the field of molecular biology, cell culture, and imaging as well as strong lab-management skills, she joined UTM in 2014 as a core facility technician at the Department of Biology. With the goal of setting up and operating a new core facility, she helped to establish the UTM & Biology Core Facilities, which includes the Cell and Molecular Biology Facility, Cell and Tissue Culture Facility and Imaging Facility. Under Xin’s dedicated care and attention, the initiation and operation of core facilities has continued to be successful and these three core facilities have become important resources for UTM researchers. She joined The Office of Vice-Principal Research (OVPR) in July 2020 when the three core facilities were fully transferred from the Department of Biology to OVPR.
Now Xin manages the Cell and Molecular Biology Facility and the Cell and Tissue Culture Facility. Additionally, she takes care of common research equipment including autoclaves, pure-water systems, fridges/freezers and growth chambers, as well as the Honeywell remote alarm system.
Beyond her passions for work, Xin loves reading in a quiet space where she can enjoy emotional and inspirational stories no matter the genre.
Senior Research Associate: Elizabeth Parke, PhD
Tel. 905 569-4695
Location: MN 3230 - Maanjiwe nendamowinan
As a cellular neurobiologist, Katie Harris-Howard completed her PhD in the Department of Cell and Systems Biology at UofT, conducted postdoctoral research at the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT, and worked as a Research Associate in the lab of former V.P., Research Bryan Stewart at UTM.
She is fascinated by synapses, the structures that form communication links between neurons and other cells, and Katie’s ongoing research seeks to characterize novel cellular and molecular mechanisms that contribute to synaptic development, function, and plasticity.
Katie has expertise in a wide range of imaging tools and techniques, and she is an experienced educator and adviser: she teaches courses in undergraduate biology, and mentors undergraduate and graduate students. Katie is delighted to provide expert guidance to help UTM researchers use the Imaging Facility resources to tackle their own research questions.
She is a mom of one, and outside of UTM Katie enjoys reading science fiction, baking, and playing board games.
Senior Research Associate: Kathryn Harris-Howard, PhD
Tel. 416 996-8751
Location: DV 2023
Senior Research Associate: TBD
Research greenhouse and growth chambers
Do you wonder how plants can remain outside under all environmental conditions and thrive? Did you ever contemplate the stark difference in plants’ life compared to animals who can take shelter when the conditions (e.g. weather) become unbearable? These are the questions that keep Vera Velasco in the research greenhouse and lab occupied for a good deal of her time.
Vera joined UTM in 2017 as a postdoc and is currently UTM growth facilities’ in-house plant physiologist. In her role, Vera facilitates and supports plant-related research within the UTM community. Her work includes investigating how plants acclimate to abiotic stressors, for example drought, heatwave and nutrient deficiency. She examines plant morphological, biochemical and molecular traits in her quest to understand how plants will respond to future climate.
Vera loves the seas and has cruised in 5 out of the “seven seas.” She started exploring Ontario’s natural bodies of water this year and aims to have experienced most of them before she retires.
See Vera’s profile at the UTM Growth Facilities website for a more complete bio.
Veterinary Director: Kerri Nielsen, DVM
Tel. 647 382-8794
Location: DV 2034A