Six grad students receive federal research awards

Cindy MacDougall

Six graduate students from Royal Roads University have been awarded federal funding to pursue research to address real-world problems.

More than $147,500 in funding was awarded through the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

Doctor of Social Sciences student Bryce Casavant has received a $60,000 SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship. His doctoral dissertation, In search of a wild peace: Applying critical social theory to wildlife co-existence in BC, takes a critical look at the use of force on animals by law enforcement officers and what that does to public trust. Casavant is a former BC conservation officer who made headlines after he refused to euthanize a pair of black bear cubs in 2015.

“My research looks at how non-human species are treated and how that reflects on how we treat each other within society,” says Casavant. “It’s important for me working in [natural resource] law enforcement to have the nod from SSHRC that public trust, and the law enforcement role in maintaining public trust, is something that the social sciences are interested in nationally. It’s a confirmation I’m on the right path.” 

Five other students received $17,500 Canada Graduate Scholarships from SSHRC, NSERC and CIHR for their graduate research:

“Research is an essential part of what our graduate students do at Royal Roads,” says Vice-President Research, International, Marketing and Business Development Pedro Márquez. “They come to us not just to learn, but to investigate ways to improve their own work, their industries, communities and society. I look forward to seeing the outcomes of their explorations.”