Kelsey Boule takes regional environmental issues to international conference…


Kelsey was invited to attend and present at the Critical Tourism Studies Conference in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. Academics from around the world attended the conference to discuss and share their visions on promoting social change in tourism practice, education, and research. Kelsey contributed to these discussions by presenting on her research that focuses on the Ethical Issues of Sport Hunting in Western Canada. The presentation was part of a larger session that explored the environment and tourism – a fascinating discussion about the conflict between humans and the environment that occur during tourism visits and activities. During the conference, Kelsey was able to connect with many other academics in which she had discussions about her own research project and research being done at other international institutions. Overall CTS was a fantastic experience for her to present her own research project to a group of academics who share a passion for research in tourism.

Students recognized by prestigious national awards

Dominique Hazel and Kelsey Boule,  two masters students in the Rural Livelihoods and Sustainable Communities, have won some prestigious national awards.

TRU has awarded three $35,000 federal entrance scholarships to outstanding graduate students.

The Canadian Graduate Scholarships – Masters are valued at $17,500 annually for two years, and were awarded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).

This marks the first time since the launch of the harmonized CGS-M program in 2013 that TRU has been eligible to offer the awards, and marks a significant federal investment in TRU’s graduate students and a validation of its graduate programming.

Dominique Hazel, Master of Science, SSHRC, Joseph-Armand Bombardier Scholarship

Hometown: I moved to Kamloops after fourth grade, so I consider this to be my hometown
Undergraduate degree: Thompson Rivers University, Bachelor of Tourism Management Degree with a concentration in festivals and events, 2016
Why did you decide to go to grad school at TRU? I decided to go to graduate school because I really wanted to expand my learning and challenge myself in a new way. I knew it would be difficult but that the hard work would pay off. I decided to stay at TRU because of the strong network I have created here with students and faculty, and because the program allows me to pursue a research interest of my own, which is very rewarding.
What will you be researching? My graduate research focus is on the sustainability of music festivals, environmentally, economically and socio-culturally, more specifically, identifying barriers and incentives to change in British Columbia.
How does winning this award impact your life as a grad student? The award lets me explore my research interest with confidence, and takes away the added stress of financial pressures as a student. It means I can really focus my time and energy into my work at TRU.

Kelsey Boule, Master of Science, CIHR, Joseph-Armand Bombardier Scholarship

Hometown: Cloverdale, BC
Undergraduate degree: Thompson Rivers University, Bachelor of Tourism Management, 2015
Why did you decide to go to grad school at TRU? During my undergrad degree at TRU I was lucky enough to have an opportunity to conduct my own research project that gave me a glimpse of what writing a thesis would be like, and it felt right to continue my research at the institute it started in. As well, it is an honour to work with Dr. Courtney Mason who has provided me with guidance and some incredible challenges as my supervisor. I was not expecting to return to school so quickly, but the opportunities available at TRU for personal growth in both knowledge and experience made the decision easy.
What is your graduate research focus? I have two projects I am currently working on. They are entitled “Barriers to Physical Activity and Health for Urban Indigenous Communities: A Young Women’s Perspective,” and, “The ethical issues of sport and conservation hunting: Investigating economic viability, sustainability, and environmental practices in British Columbia Canada.”
How does winning this award impact your life as a graduate student? This award is truly an incredible honour, and it allows me to focus on my research with the funds supporting my project and education goals, and its prestige will aid in advancing my academic and career ambitions.



New Book on Food Security

A Land Not Forgotten

Indigenous Food Security and Land-Based Practices in Northern Ontario

Michael A. Robidoux (Editor), Courtney W. Mason (Editor)


Food insecurity takes a disproportionate toll on the health of Canada’s Indigenous people. A Land Not Forgotten examines the disruptions in local food practices as a result of colonization and the cultural, educational, and health consequences of those disruptions. This multidisciplinary work demonstrates how some Indigenous communities in northern Ontario are addressing challenges to food security through the restoration of land-based cultural practices.

Improving Indigenous health, food security, and sovereignty means reinforcing practices that build resiliency in ecosystems and communities. As this book contends, this includes facilitating productive collaborations and establishing networks of Indigenous communities and allies to work together in promotion and protection of Indigenous food systems. This will influence diverse groups and encourage them to recognize the complexity of colonial histories and the destructive health impacts in Indigenous communities.

In addition to its multidisciplinary lens, the authors employ a community-based participatory approach that privileges Indigenous interests and perspectives. A Land Not Forgotten provides a comprehensive picture of the food security and health issues Indigenous peoples are encountering in Canada’s rural north.


“Without glossing over the terrible costs of the colonial legacy that Indigenous people are still paying, A Land Not Forgotten offers hope for a healthier, more food secure future for all of us.”

– Elaine Power, Associate Professor, School of Kinesiology and Health Studies, Queen’s University


Michael A. Robidoux is a professor in the School of Human Kinetics, University of Ottawa. He is part of the Indigenous Health Research Group.

Courtney W. Mason is Canada Research Chair, Rural Livelihoods and Sustainable Communities at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops, British Columbia.

Other contributors: Kristin Burnett, Bénédicte Fontaine-Bisson, Simon Frogg, Janice Cindy Gaudet, François Haman, Benoît Lamarche, Joseph LeBlanc, Courtney W. Mason, Shinjini Pilon, Michael A. Robidoux, Desirée Streit.

Grad Student Community Presentation (Jason Johnston)

Jason W. Johnston

MSc Environmental Science,

Rural Livelihoods and Sustainable Communities Lab member

Nicola Valley Institute of Technology Presentation

Wednesday March 15th

Contact; Tom Willms (

Jason was invited to the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology as a guest speaker to present to a field technician class, in which the majority of students were Indigenous. He introduced himself,  his academic and fieldwork, and gave a bit of background on his own Indigenous heritage. He spoke to the class for an hour and a half,  giving them an overview of his current research on Indigenous representation in Jasper National Park and how he approached his research from an Indigenous perspective. He also was asked to speak about his previous work as an environmental technician and his academic path that has led him to where he is and how that will shape his future. The students were very receptive to the information being presented and asked some very good questions finding a number of commonalities including one student’s work on mapping traditional Indigenous territories. It was a great experience and several students stayed after to ask more questions and ask advice about how to go about doing this type of research, both professionally and academically.