Lab and Community News

Rural Tourism Symposium, Beyond the Fires: Wildfire Recovery and Industry Development

April 13 – 15, 2018
Kelsey Boule, Carmen Massey and Dominique Hazel joined associate professor, Dr. Rob Hood, at the 2018 Rural Tourism Symposium in Williams Lake over the weekend of April 13–15, 2018. The symposium, Beyond the Fires: Wildfire Recovery and Industry Development, was an industry based conference that included presentations from Dr. Rob Hood, Destination BC, and other industry experts around tourism resilience and recovery in the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast region. The group represented Thompson Rivers University while engaging in stimulating discussions, offering an academic viewpoint to tourism issues and action planning. The students connected with both industry professionals and members of the community to speak about their master’s research objectives and results. Students Kelsey Boule and Dominique Hazel also presented research posters. The weekend was a great step towards creating new connections and advocating for the potential of student project research and collaborations with industry professionals to support both student learning, business organization, and community support.

Three Minute Thesis at TRU

Both Dominique Hazel and Kelsey Boule competed in The(3MT™) competition held at TRU on March 20th, 2018. The 3MT™ is an internationally recognized research communication competition developed to challenge thesis-based graduate students. They were tasked to deliver a presentation of their research and its significance in three minutes or less to a non-specialist audience. Dominique spoke passionately on the environmental impacts of music festivals in B.C. and Kelsey shared her thesis on the ethical issues of sport hunting in the province. They represented the Masters of Environmental Science while competed alongside TRU students from diverse programs including: Masters of Education; Masters of Nursing; and Masters of Business Administration. It was a tight competition with compelling participants.  Both students enjoyed listening to the other researchers on campus. Kelsey placed second in the competition judged by community members Donovan Cavers, Councillor City of Kamloops, Danalee Baker, Executive Director, United Way, Thompson Nicola Cariboo, and Andrew Cooper, Artistic Directior, Chimera Theatre.

Environmental Science Masters Showcase (2018)

The Rural Livelihoods and Sustainable Community Lab members got together (sans Courtney) for a few quick photos after a successful day had by all.  Their posters and presentations were well-received. The open bar (which is tradition), may have motivated the second picture.

Pictured below:

Jason Johnston, Dominique Hazel, Kelsey Boule, Carmen Massey,  Paulina Ross and Pate Neumann

(The guys seem less impressed or too cool, not sure which is appropriate).


TRU Contributions to Fresh Water Fishing Symposium…

Pictured above (from left):

Dr. Courtney Mason (Canada Research Chair); Campbell Bryk (fish tourism operator and graduate from TRU tourism);  Brennan Lund (Natural Resource Science undergrad student); Dr. Brian Heise (Associate Professor, Natural Resource Science); Kindra Maricle (Natural Resource Science undergrad student); Carmen Massey (Masters student in Environmental Sciences).

On November 8th and 9th 2017, a Fresh Water Fishing Tourism Symposium was held in Kamloops, BC. TRU had number of attendees who contributed to the productive dialogue. A series of interesting panels and presentations filled the busy schedule over the two days. Courtney Mason was part of a stimulating panel entitled: Managing Our Landbase for Recreational and Tourism Values. Participants shared their perspectives of working in land-based tourism operations over many decades in the province. While some frustration was evident with the province’s decisions that have been in favour of resource extraction industries and the impacts on local waterways and fish tourism operations, there was a clear desire to move beyond land use plans and create productive legislation to protect small tourism businesses and water ecosystems throughout the province.


Boule Presents Findings at Health Psychology Conference…

Kelsey Boule, graduate student in Master’s of Environmental Science, and Courtney Mason, Associate Professor, went to St. John’s Newfoundland to present at the Canadian Society for Psychomotor Learning and Sport Psychology (SCAPPS) conference this October. Kelsey presented on the project she has been a Research Assistant on for the past two years which looked at rethinking positive youth development and barriers to physical activity programs for urban Indigenous youth. This research focused on the barriers to and facilitators of physical activity for urban Indigenous youth in Kamloops. Privileging the perspective of Indigenous youth, the findings work towards implementing strategies that help overcome these barriers to increase their overall participation and access. Her talk was part of a larger seminar which discussed topics on sport and physical activity in Indigenous communities where she was able to reflect on similar studies that have been conducted across Canada. The conference was a great opportunity for Kelsey to meet and engage with academics and students from across the country to discuss further research opportunities.

Kelsey Boule pictured at Signal Hill in St. John’s.

Nickolas Kosmenko, Kelsey Boule, Leisha Strachan, Tara-Leigh McHugh and Courtney W. Mason. “Relevance of an Existing Knowledge-To-Action Model to Research with Indigenous Youth.” Paper presented at the 48th Annual Canadian Society for Psychomotor Learning and Sport Psychology (SCAPPS), St. John’s, NL, October 13, 2017.

Kelsey Boule, Courtney W. Mason, Tara-Leigh McHugh and Leisha Strachan. “Rethinking positive youth development and barriers to physical activity programs for urban Indigenous youth.” Paper presented at the 48th Annual Canadian Society for Psychomotor Learning and Sport Psychology (SCAPPS), St. John’s, NL, October 13, 2017.

Indigenous Youth Outdoor Skills Day (Oct 21st, 2017)

On October 21st, TRU Adventure Programming students, Ella Roles and Monica Dufresne, lead a group of youth from the White Buffalo Aboriginal and Metis Health Society up to Isobel Lake, in the Lac du Bois Grasslands Protected Area, for a day filled with paddling, fishing, bonfires, drumming, storytelling and snow(person) building.
Pate Neumann, a Master’s of Environmental Science graduate student, and Courtney Mason, Associate Professor, went along to assist Ella and Monica with the days activities. They were also supported by three White Buffalo staff members and two volunteers from Secwepemc Fisheries. The day began with a “learn to paddle” session on the lake followed by a delicious lunch. In the afternoon there was a “learn to fish session” which was supported by Secwepemc Fisheries staff who spoke about traditional First Nations fishing methods and tools. This was followed by some singing, drumming, storytelling and brief Secwepemc history lessons. Everyone bundled up and headed back onto the water to try their hand at fly fishing and spin casting. By this point, the snow had begun to fall, creating some spectacularly calm and scenic paddling on the lake.
After some significant fishing effort, the group came back in to warm up by the fire and then packed up to return to town. It was quite a fun day, filled with lots of learning and some new experiences for all. It was nice to see TRU students, learning, playing and interacting along side local Indigenous youth. There is no better way to get to know people in your community then to bundle up and spend a day on the water with them!
We are looking forward to the next opportunity to get out with White Buffalo and local Indigenous youth to spend more time learning from each other in the beautiful natural environment that surrounds Kamloops.

Boule presents as President’s Reception

On September 19th, Kelsey Boule represented graduate students at the President’s Reception at TRU by giving a brief presentation. This event is held annually to recognize the students at the university who were awarded scholarships. President, Dr. Allan Shaver,  Provost and VP Academic,  Dr. Christine Bovis-Cnossen, as well as various Deans at TRU were in attendance to celebrate the hard work of the students. Kelsey spoke of her experiences at TRU including her time as an undergraduate student, her transition to graduate school, awards received, and research conducted through the university. It was an honor for her to be asked to represent graduate students as she was the recipient of both undergrad and graduate scholarships as well as the prestigious CIHR grant.  She hoped her story could inspire hard working students while acknowledging the faculty, staff, and peers who supported her throughout her education.

Kelsey Boule pictured with the Provost and VP Academic,  Dr. Christine Bovis-Cnossen, at the President’s Reception.


Neumann’s Research Shaping Regional Development….

Pate Neumann, Master’s student in Environmental Science, was recently invited to present his undergraduate research on conflict resolution for multi-use trail systems at the 2017 Mountain Bike Tourism Symposium held in Revelstoke, BC. The Symposium is held on a bi-annual basis and is an opportunity for stakeholders and experts to gather and share insights and knowledge on how to progress toward a more sustainable mountain bike tourism sector. Pate’s research focused on conflict mitigation techniques specific to the winter use of trail systems. It was a fantastic opportunity for Pate to develop relationships with key industry stakeholders and decision makers. Pate is using the experience gained from the symposium to shape and develop his graduate thesis work on sustainable management and use of trails in alpine environments.

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.

Kelsey Boule and Courtney W. Mason. “Ethical Issues in Sport Hunting Tourism Economies: Investigating Stereotypes, Sustainability, and Inclusion in Western Canada’s Hunting Industry.” Paper Presented at 7th Annual Critical Tourism Studies Conference. Palma de Mallorca, Spain, June 27, 2017.