Practical & Academic Research Committee:

  • Plays a central role in the development of CERIC’s internal and external research agenda by reviewing materials to determine what research needs to be done in Canada and supporting the development of internal and external stakeholder surveys.
  • Determines and recommends to the Board the most effective way that CERIC can support the growth and development of practical and academic career-related research in Canada and its application.
  • Recommends priorities and guidelines for all practical and academic research efforts.
  • Chooses and recommends a relevant graduate thesis from works submitted through a contest to be considered for publication by CERIC.
  • Finds ways to communicate the fact that CERIC is supportive of career-related research and will lend its support and resources to both practical and academic research for the benefit of all Canadians.
  • Promotes and advocates the need for increased practical and academic research in this field across Canada.
  • Identifies partners to participate in and contribute to research projects.
  • Collaborates with researchers to advance career-related research in Canada.

Committee Members

Tony Botelho, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC (Co-Chair)

Tony Botelho is the Director of Simon Fraser University’s nationally recognized Career & Volunteer Services. He is a past recipient of the Rob Shea Research Award by the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers (CACEE) for his research on the role of career education in the contemporary university environment (2014). Tony also co-led (and co-chaired) the development of CACEE’s first research committee. In 2019 he was awarded the Stu Conger Award for Leadership by the Canadian Career Development Foundation.

Jeff Landine, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, NB (Co-Chair)

Dr Jeff Landine is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of New Brunswick and a Licensed Psychologist with the College of Psychologists of New Brunswick. He has worked as a counsellor in the public school system, with UNB’s Counselling Services and in private practice for a combined 25 years. His teaching and research interests include employability, self-concept, identity development, career development and career counselling, as well as professional ethics.

Paul Brinkhurst, FutureWorx, Okotoks, AB

Paul brings 20 years of military experience as a naval architect, and in youth/adult education to his work at Futureworx, where he is the Innovations Developer. In this capacity he is responsible for the development and support of Futureworx assessment and curriculum products, and strategic initiatives. His primary interest lies in the integrations of soft skills assessment and development with literacy, essential skills and career programing. Paul is a member of the OLES Working Group reviewing the Essential Skills Framework.

Cathy Campbell, Consultant, Halifax, NS

Cathy has over 25 years’ experience as a researcher, career counsellor, program developer and manager in high school, community college, university and government settings. She has extensive experience at both a client and program level in helping young adults make effective transitions into post-secondary education and the workplace. Cathy has presented and published on the topics of narrative career counseling, effective roles for parents in assisting young people with career planning, and chaos-oriented approaches to career counseling. She has completed a PhD and written the CERIC-funded publication Career Crafting the Decade After High School which is based on her doctoral research.

Tannis Goddard, Mixtmode Consulting, Port Moody, BC

Tannis Goddard is the CEO of MixtMode Consulting and provides training and consultation services to governments and career agencies regarding the design and implementation of career services, with a specialization in online and blended career services. She has over 25 years of experience operating career centres in Canada. Tannis led the launch of the first federally funded online career counselling program in 2004 and has since led the successful delivery of online services to a full range of client groups. With keen interest in seeing this delivery option grow in our field, Tann is has been involved in research projects, including her PhD studies, and has presented on this topic all over the world.

Magdalena Mot, Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Vancouver, BC

Magdalena Mot’s background in education, career development and business administration brings together a vast and diverse experience spread over 20 years of living in three different countries. With a PhD in linguistics from the West University of Timisoara in Romania and a Master of Arts from McGill University, she is also an alumnus of Simon Fraser University’s Career Development Practitioner program. Currently she’s teaching the Career Development Theories and the Code of Ethics in this program at SFU.

Magdalena has been a program co-ordinator for three WorkBC employment centres and is currently coaching business students in post-baccalaureate and graduate programs at Kwantlen Polytechnic University. She is a Certified Master of Career Services, a credential earned with the National Career Development Association (NCDA). Her passion for applied communication and the ancient art of rhetoric has transformed her approach to career development practice. She is an eager supporter of career development-based research for those who experience life transitions, including immigrants, refugees and international students.

Magdalena loves the outdoors, and whenever she’s not busy with her work, you’ll find her on the beautiful trails around Vancouver’s North Shore mountains.

Geneviève Taylor, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montreal, QC

Geneviève Taylor, PhD, is a tenured professor in career counseling in the department of Education and Pedagogy at Université du Québec à Montréal. She is part of the Groupe de recherche et d’intervention sur la présence attentive (GRIPA), an interdisciplinary research group on mindfulness, where she heads the education research stream. She obtained her doctorate in clinical psychology at McGill University and holds a master’s degree in human resources from the London School of Economics and Political Science. After her master’s, she worked for two years as an executive search and selection consultant in London, where she led assignments in the health and social service sectors across the United Kingdom. Her research focuses on goal-setting, motivation and well-being in education and work settings. More specifically, she is interested in the ways in which mindfulness and compassion-based interventions can help people set career goals that reflect their true self, decrease their stress and increase their well-being and resilience. She currently teaches in the areas of identity development, positive psychology and research methods. She is also a licensed psychologist in Quebec.

Roxy Merkand, University of Waterloo, Kitchener, ON (GSEP)

Roxy Merkand is a doctoral candidate in industrial/organizational psychology at the University of Waterloo (UW), committed to disability advocacy in her research and work. Roxy studies disclosure of invisible disabilities during job search and at work and currently works at UW’s Centre for Career Action—advising students, including those with a disability, as they search for and apply to jobs.

Content & Learning Committee:

  • Provides content currency support to staff and input on new content for the CERIC group of periodical publications (Careering magazine) and other CERIC assets by utilizing results from surveys, polls, user feedback as well as other qualitative inputs.
  • Suggests possible leads for content submissions and learning opportunities that are in line with identified content streams or themes and suggest ways they can best be organized and presented in order to be usable and engaging (articles, links, blogs, webinars, social media and other channels) in both English and French.
  • Upon request, provides editorial support by reviewing draft publication content to ensure that the overall tone and quality of material is of a high standard, in line with CERIC’s mission and mandate, engaging and appropriate.
  • Promotes and educates career professionals on the need for, and sharing of information, ongoing learning and professional development across Canada.
  • Provides support and advise to staff in the review of Partnership Proposals, as required.
  • Actively champions and promotes CERIC periodical publications and learning initiatives to colleagues and networks.

Committee Members

Andrea Christensen, University of Calgary, AB (Co-chair)

Andrea Christensen, MEdBEd, CDP, is the Alumni Career Development Specialist with University of Calgary, where she supports alumni in all stages of their career and professional development through coaching and program development. She has worked in various roles within career development and education and is a sessional instructor with Mount Royal University. Her experience spans that of school-teacher, program manager, school board liaison, instructional designer, workshop facilitator, career and education consultant, and mom to four boys. She truly enjoys helping others at different points in their career journey, whether it be to discover their value, find meaningful work, support career pivots or work out next steps.   

Meghan Lavallee, Manitoba Institute of Trades and Technology, Winnipeg, MB (Co-Chair)

Meghan Lavallee resides in Winnipeg, and is the Director of Pathway Programs for the Manitoba Institute of Trades and Technology. This includes ongoing support for the institution’s Adult Learning Centres and Language Programs, as well as the systems to create successful career and educational pathways to pursue trades and technical training,  transition into employment, and/or on to other opportunities in post-secondary education.

Meghan’s passion for experiential learning and student success started as a student and staff member within residence and student life communities in the post-secondary sector, while completing her BSc and PBDE. From there, she turned her love of student development to a proactive educational attainment model with Career Trek, an experiential learning career development not-for-profit that creates opportunities to catapult young Manitobans to career and education success. She is currently completing her MEd (post-secondary studies) at Memorial University.

Meghan loves volunteering in her community, yoga, gardening and time in nature with her family and canine companions.

Lucie Demers, Septembre éditeur, Quebec City, QC

Lucie Demers graduated from Laval University in 2012. Since then, she has been a career advisor. She first began at September éditeur as a project manager, then became editorial director in 2017. Over the years, she has worked with many authors on their various projects, including Louis Cournoyer, Isabelle Falardeau, Mathieu Guénette, Wilfrid Larochelle, Marie-Ève ​​Lécine, Jacques Limoges, Yves Maurais, Denis Pelletier, Émilie Robert and Sara Savoie. She has also collaborated in the development of several digital projects, online questionnaires and informational databases. Her greatest pleasure is to see the evolution of quality tools, which make a real difference for clients.

Dinuka Gunaratne, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON

Dinuka Gunaratne is currently the Director, The Centre for Graduate Professional Development at University of Toronto. Over the last 13 years, he has worked at five post-secondary institutions across Canada in various roles in student services, fundraising, alumni relations and career development. As a former international student from Sri Lanka and a new immigrant to Canada, he is passionate about supporting immigrants and international students while advocating for system-level change for Equity, Diversity, Inclusion (EDI) and dismantling racism in higher education. He is also a facilitator of Anti-Racism Response Training (ART).

Over the last six years, Dinuka has specialized in supporting the career development of graduate students (Masters, PhD and Postdoc) and is recognized for his expertise in the field. He holds leadership positions with the Canadian Association of Colleges and University Student Services (CACUSS) Graduate and Postdoctoral Development Network (GPDN) and the Graduate Career Consortium (GCC). A graduate of the University of Guelph, he holds a Bachelor of Science in zoology and is an avid gardener outside of work.

Holly Linkert, Eastwood Collegiate Institute Waterloo Region District School Board, Kitchener, ON

Holly Linkert is a Co-operative Education and Dance Teacher at Eastwood Collegiate with the Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB). She developed a Newcomer Drama Course to help refugee students develop English language skills as well as build connection to their new school environment. Holly is dedicated to helping her students find their groove and pathway in life. As a member of the provincial brainstorming team for the new Career Studies curriculum in Ontario, she helped to add financial literacy and updated job application methods to the curriculum. She has a diverse career background starting as a professional singer/dancer with Jean Ann Ryan Productions (Florida), member of a retail management team for Reebok Canada, a Guidance Counsellor with the Toronto District School Board (TDSB), dance educator with Carousel Dance Centre, and a former volunteer for Ballet Creole (Toronto) and Dance Ontario. She holds a BA Honours history degree from Kings University College at Western University, a post-graduate Career Development Practitioner certificate from Conestoga College, a Teaching Certificate from D’Youville College (NY), and a Jazz/Tap teaching diploma from ADAPT.

Felicity Morgan, University of Toronto, Mississauga, ON

Felicity Morgan is the Director of the Career Centre at the University of Toronto Mississauga. She is an innovative career services leader, who constantly explores new methods of helping students achieve their goals. Felicity is committed to providing programming and services that help them develop lifelong career management skills and to facilitating their connections with employers, alumni, industry professionals and the community. The UTM Career Centre has received a Top 5 nomination, National Association of Colleges and Employer’s Members Choice award for innovation (2013), recognizing the out-of-the-box thinking the staff employs in their work. In addition, the centre received a shared (with a consortium of Canadian universities, colleges and some international institutions) Excellence in Innovation Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers award (2017). A graduate of the University of Toronto, she holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and sociology and a master’s of education in counselling psychology and is a Registered Psychotherapist in Ontario.

Medina Puskar, Manitoba Start, Winnipeg, MB

Medina Puskar is a Registered Social Worker and Manager of Career Services at Manitoba Start where she leads a team of trained and certified career coaches effectively guiding newcomers to find meaningful employment. Prior to being in a leadership role, she worked as a Career Coach/Facilitator, teaching employability skills and job search techniques. Medina completed the Career Development Practitioner Certification diploma from University of Winnipeg and hold a Bachelor of Social Work from University of Manitoba. As a refugee herself, she understands the challenges newcomers face in finding meaningful employment. Motivated by data, she is always eager to uncover new trends and strives to implement them in strategic planning within the organization.

Roxane Stonely, Centre de recherche d’emploi Côte-des-Neiges /Job Search Centre, Montreal, QC

Roxane Stonely is the General Director of the Côte-des-Neiges Job Search Centre in Montreal.  The centre offers employment services in French and English to a diverse clientele such as new immigrants and visible minorities. Roxane also serves on the board of AXTRA, the Alliance des centre-conseil en emploi. For the past 20 years, Roxane has worked in the employment field. She graduated from the University of Sherbrooke in career counselling, and started working as an employment counsellor at the Women’s Y.  She then became co-ordinator and acting director until she became General Director at the Côte-des-Neiges Job Search Centre. Furthermore, the centre is Certified Remarkable Employer by the Bureau de normalisation du Québec. This certification is awarded to businesses that implement best practices in human resources management. The Centre received its initial certification in 2013.

Advocacy & Community Engagement Committee:

  • Contributes to developing and supporting the implementation of advocacy plans with identified priority audiences, including employers, educators and government, that promote career literacy as well as the social and economic impact of career development as a public good. Informs creation of national advocacy campaigns that elevate the value of a career mindset with constituents and clients.
  • Recommends strategies, either directly or in partnership with other sector leaders, to influence systems change that creates stronger and more equitable and effective programs, practices and policies to advance career development in Canada.
  • Identifies approaches to engage diverse stakeholders in the broader career development ecosystem with CERIC’s work and builds relationships through convenings and other means to address shared issues. Engages networks of influencers as partners in amplifying CERIC messages and supporting its activities.
  • Suggests tools and strategies for community engagement and growth among career development professionals so that they are informed, consulted, involved and empowered and can act as catalysts for change. Initiates and supports cross-sectoral conversations and peer-to-peer networking around career-related issues.
  • Advises on multi-channel public relations, including media, digital and social, to generate exposure and increase awareness of CERIC and other sector leaders as well as the public profile of career development. Guides the dissemination of research and learning that enhances the work of career professionals.
  • Actively champions and promotes CERIC assets to colleagues and networks.

Committee Members

Trevor Lehmann, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB (Co-Chair)

Trevor Lehmann is a student services professional with over 9 years of experience advising post-secondary students on academic and career decisions at the University of Manitoba. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education and is a Canadian Certified Counsellor (CCC) with the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association.
Trevor volunteers with the Manitoba Association of Career Development (MACD) where he chairs the professional development committee to co-ordinate workshops and presentations to MACD members. He also assists with the annual Let’s Get to Work Conference.
Beyond career development, Trevor works to assist adults through other life transitions. As a volunteer with Palliative Manitoba, he assists clients through life transitions and associated loss and grief. He also maintains a private practice running groups and workshops to assist with mental health concerns related to climate change and ecological loss.

Valérie Roy, AXTRA, l’Alliance des centres-conseils en emploi, Montreal, QC (Co-Chair)

Valérie Roy is the Executive Director of AXTRA, l’Alliance des centres-conseils en emploi, which brings together 95 employability service providers across the province whose mission is the job market integration of all Quebecers. She works with AXTRA’s members and partners to develop best practices, and a body of knowledge in the employment and training sector in order to create an inclusive labour market for all. Valérie also serves on a number of boards and committees in Quebec, Canada and internationally.

Akosua Alagaratnam, First Work, Toronto, ON

Akosua Alagaratnam is the Executive Director of First Work. Prior to joining the organization, Akosua worked as a senior public affairs professional, primarily focused on policy affecting marginalized communities and youth. During her tenure with the Provincial Minister of Children and Youth Services, Akosua led the Youth Justice and Youth Opportunity policy and also worked directly with multiple agencies, as well as frontline staff, to advocate for marginalized youth. As a senior policy advisor with the Provincial Minister of Finance, Akosua effectively advised on policy and legislation spanning a diverse portfolio, including labour, children and youth services, community and social services, correctional services, and Indigenous relations. With over six years of experience in government, combined with seven years as the board representative for the Region of Peel Women’s Centre – Interim Place, Akosua is an established driver of effective policy-making, communications, public and government affairs, and community engagement.

Akosua currently sits on the board of the Canadian Coalition of Community-Based Employability Training, MABELLEarts and GoodWill Industries – The Amity Group.

Keka DasGupta, Precision Marketing Group Inc, Toronto, ON

Keka DasGupta is a 20-year award-winning PR and communications strategist, a TEDx speaker, executive trainer and an entrepreneur. Keka began her career at IKEA and served with the company for seven years, managing all national PR and communications programs. She also served as the company’s media and crisis spokesperson. She then moved onto the reputed PR firm, DDB Public Relations (DDB PR). After becoming a new mom (she now has two boys), Keka established her own boutique consulting firm, Precision Marketing Group Inc.

Keka continued to consult with DDB, as a freelance VP of their PR division. In 2016, Keka and her DDB team were awarded the Oscars of the PR industry with the Agency of the Year designation in the global Gold Quill competition, by the International Association of Business Communicators. Keka has worked with such globally recognized brands as: IKEA, Nike, Disney, American Express, Schwarzkopf, Johnson & Johnson and many other Fortune 500s. She has worked in recruitment marketing for over a decade, co-founded a corporate L&D company, Enkompass Consulting, and served as an instructor at the Schulich Executive Education Centre (SEEC), York University.

As her passion project, Keka also delivers keynote speeches and runs interactive Gratitude workshops for corporations across North America, focused on increasing employee productivity, happiness, loyalty and retention. Keka has also created a program for school students (Grades 7 to 12), focused on using gratitude to proactively tackle bullying environments. Keka is a professional member of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers (CAPS).

Raj Dam, University of Toronto, Scarborough, ON

Raj Dam is an entrepreneurial and result-oriented professional with 12+ years of leadership experience in business development, employer engagement, program management and communications. Raj is skilled in employer engagement, consultative selling, relationship management, forming partnerships, career development, strategy, fiscal management and team management. He holds a bachelor’s degree and post-graduate diploma in business management with a marketing major. Raj is the winner of the “Technology Rocketship” award from UK Trade and Investment. He has worked with broad-based sectors such as banking, manufacturing, technology, higher education and non-profits, and has partnered with large employers such as RBC, Rogers, Telus, Deloitte, IBM, Microsoft, Randstad and ACCES Employment for employer engagement or talent development initiatives.

Frances Humphreys, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, ON

FrancesFrances Humphreys is the Associate Director of Career Development & External Relations at Wilfrid Laurier University. Frances is responsible for career consulting and employer relations at the central Career Centre, oversees the Brantford Career Centre and the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics Graduate Programs satellite office. Frances facilitates faculty partnerships and the integration of comprehensive career development programs and services throughout the campus for students and alumni.

Since 2005, Frances has contributed to the career development field as an active member of the MBA Career Services and Employer Alliance (MBACSEA) and the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers (CACEE). She has a solid reputation for leveraging networks and building strategic relationships and has supported the marketing, communications and research initiatives of these organizations. Prior to joining the career development team, her professional background included working at the Laurier Institute, the management and executive development arm of the School of Business & Economics.

Adriano Magnifico, Louis Riel School Division, Winnipeg, MB

Adriano Magnifico has taught senior high school English and Career Development for 35 years. In 1995, he created the Career Internship Program, a multi-award-winning venture that meshes career development with traditional courses, and which continues to this day. He is chair of the Louis Riel School Division Career Development Committee and member of the leadership team. He works or has worked with executive/leadership teams with CERIC, LMIC, the Canadian Cyber Defence Challenge, the Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce, and Canadian Manufacturing and Exporters (CME) and the Brookfield Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. He actively volunteers with Junior Achievement, Special Olympics Manitoba, Harvest Manitoba and has coached hockey and baseball in his community for the past 30 years. He is Co-president of the Manitoba Association of Teachers of English and has worked on teams developing summer literacy programs for marginalized elementary students. Adriano publishes the occasional article on career development, writes a regular column for the local community newspaper, and has won awards for his short stories. He created the LEAN Career Design Canvas personal narrative tool and shares it with career development professionals in Canada and various countries. He hosts the podcast Adventures in Careerland with a team of dedicated high school students. He is happily married to Vicki, has three boys (all moved out!), and two rescue dogs, Maggie and Mighty.

Amy Melo, Peel District School Board, Mississauga, ON

Amy Melo is a secondary school educator with over 18 years of experience; many of which have been spent assisting students as a Guidance teacher. She currently serves as the Co-ordinator of Pathways, Guidance and Career Education at the Peel District School Board where she implements guidance programming for the entire system. Amy has served as the Co-Chair of the Ontario Guidance Leadership Association where she has worked among leaders from across the province of Ontario.

John Sharpe, Partners for Youth, Fredericton, NB

Educated at Holland College in Prince Edward Island and the University of New Brunswick, John Sharpe has work in the not-for-profit sector with youth and youth at risk for almost 30 years. John has served on various national and provincial committees and teams focused on youth mental health, youth healthy relationships, at-risk youth and career development and financial literacy. He has served on a number of boards of directors and has an interest in community development and integrated service delivery. John lives in New Brunswick with his wife Jo and Labrador retriever, Willow, and spends most of his summer in Prince Edward Island.

Lena Stewart, Yorkville University, Dartmouth, NS (GSEP)

Lena Stewart is currently studying a Master of Arts in Counselling and Psychology at Yorkville University. Holding a Bachelor of Commerce from Saint Mary’s University and a Marketing Diploma from the Nova Scotia Community College, Lena brings over a decade of experience in business, marketing, and communications from across private, non-profit and post-secondary sectors. Stepping into the career development sector later in her career, Lena has not looked back with big future goals to support clients at the intersection of mental health and careers, and to nurture optimism and resilience into the changing ways we work and live.

Darrell Cole, BrickStorming, Winnipeg, MB (Co-Chair)

Darrell Cole (BA, MSW) has always been passionate about marketing, sales and advocacy. Whether it was as a part-time sales clerk at a pet store, founder and CEO of an experiential learning/career development organization, at a pub with strangers, a program designer, or president of a housing co-operative, Darrell has endeavoured to actively use his mind and voice to promote causes that engage and drive him. Having worked in the career development field for over 20 years, he is eager to contribute to the important work that CERIC undertakes.

The vast majority of Darrell’s marketing and sales work has revolved around his commitment to the principles of social justice (other than being a hardcore member of Rider Nation). He has worked tirelessly, promoting causes that involve the under-represented and disempowered in our society. He especially loves to explore issues through innovative, hands-on processes such as Lego® Serious Play®. Darrell is a certified facilitator at Brickstorming, a Winnipeg-based business facilitation, educational consultancy and visual artistry company specializing in the LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® method.

Darrell enjoys eating licorice, spending time with loved ones, playing board and role-playing games, family history research and growing succulents.