VIU Scholarship, Research, and Creative Activity

MABRRI Research Assistants

MABRRI is excited to welcome the following current, and former, students of Vancouver Island University to our research team!

Sonal Deshmukh

Sonal is a first year Master of Community Planning student at Vancouver Island University. She has an undergraduate degree in Architecture she completed in India. Sonal has eight years of practical experience in architecture with both private and public sector clients. Sonal is a highly ambitious designer with hopes of improving urban issues through responsive designs. Her belief that the built environment has an immense effect on human behaviour inspired her to pursue a graduate degree in community planning.

Melanie Loureiro

I am a first year student pursuing a Major in Biology looking to expand my knowledge in different fields of science and interested in the biodiversity of the local ecosystems in Vancouver Island. Born and raised in Brazil, after graduating from a BA in Graphic Design I moved to Canada and have been living here for the past 6 years, feeling very grateful for the opportunities and quality of life that living here has given me.

Colby Mahood

Colby is currently an undergrad Geography student specializing in Sustainable Resource Management at VIU. He has a diploma in Forest Resources Technology from VIU and spent three years as a forestry consultant in Squamish. Colby is working as a research assistant for MABRRI and is working on various environmental planning projects. Colby is originally from Squamish, but has found a new home on Vancouver Island. He is passionate about finding ways to mitigate and adapt to climate change through responsible resource management.

Chrissy Schellenberg

Chrissy has graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biology, as well as a Post-Degree Diploma in Fisheries and Aquaculture, at VIU. Originally, she grew up in Alberta and moved to Vancouver Island to pursue her passion of studying marine ecology. Chrissy has been a Research Assistant for MABRRI since May, 2018. She is currently working on the Forage Fish Spawning Habitat Monitoring project, as well as the Bull Kelp Sample Collection and Marine Monitoring in the Salish Sea project. 

Cassy Twiname

Cassandra is a recent (2020) VIU Bachelor of Science graduate with a double major in Biology and Psychology. She is originally from Terrace, a small town in northern British Columbia, where her passion for plant biology and human psychology developed. She has experience as a laboratory technician and quality assurance technician for the provincial government, and field work experience from her work as mycology research assistant. Cassandra has worked with the MABRRI team for one year as a Research Assistant and is excited to continue working alongside her colleagues in their efforts towards environmental conservation.

Steffi Sunny

Steffi is a Master of Community planning student with a background in Architecture from India and currently working as a research assistant in MABRRI. She is passionate about planning healthy communities and believes that the design of built environment has the ability to create a better functioning community which contributes to an improved quality of life. She has experience working as a Junior Architect for two years and it was during this period that she came across the real-life issues faced by communities related to improper planning such as drainage, waste-water management, and congested urban areas, which ultimately leads to unhealthy living conditions. She is very excited to work with MABRRI this summer and is looking forward to contributing to various planning and community engagement projects.