Research Expo

Thank you to everyone for helping to make Saint Mary’s 13th annual Research Expo such a great success! Panelist and attendee involvement was tremendous. As a community, Expo is a wonderful opportunity to share the wide variety of research happening at Saint Mary’s University.

We want to give a special thanks to Springboard Atlantic for their involvement and contribution towards helping make Research Expo happen! Saint Mary's University is a member of Springboard Atlantic, which is a regional network of offices at most university's and colleges in Atlantic Canada that support researchers interested in collaborating with partners to mobilize knowledge and protect results where possible.

We are looking forward to seeing everyone at the next Research Expo event on March 15th, 2024!

Below are some pictures from this years Research Expo event.






If you did not get a chance to connect with faculty during Expo or would like to provide feedback on the event, please contact Danielle Goodfellow in the Office of Innovation and Community Engagement at

Congratulations to Valerie Wadman, Safety Officer in People and Culture, who is this year’s recipient of the Staff Research Recognition Award.

2023 Agenda

1:00 p.m. - Opening remarks, Dr. Adam Sarty, Associate Vice-President, Research and
                Kevin Buchan, Director, Office of Innovation and Community Engagement
1:05 p.m. - Networking at the booths
3:00 p.m. - Announcement of Staff Research Recognition Award
3:05 p.m. - Faculty Pitch Presentations
4:00 p.m. - Opening remarks for Research Reception, Dr. Adam Sarty
4:30 p.m. - Closing of Research Reception

Here you can find a copy of the Research Expo Program 2023

2023 Presenters

Dr. Steven Smith, Psychology
Dr. Diane Crocker, Criminology
Dr. Joniada MIlla, Economics
Dr. Yasushi Akiyama, Mathematics and Computer Science
Dr. Karly Kehoe, History
Dr. Danielle Tokarz, Chemistry
Dr. Erin Adlakha, Geology

Dr. Steve Smith

Dr. Steve Smith is a Psychology Professor, former Dean of Science, and former Associate Vice-President Academic and Enrolment Management at Saint Mary's University. As AVP, he led the Strategic Enrolment Management initiative at the University, supported student success and teaching excellence, as well as the continued expansion of community outreach initiatives, partners, and academic support for students as they transition in, through, and out of university.

He has an active research lab, where his team conducts research on student success, compliance, persuasion, forensic psychology, and health promotion, which has been funded through external research grants from SSHRC, Mitacs, NSHRF, CIHR, and many other agencies and organizations.

Along with colleagues, his team is currently working on empirically validated projects to enhance student success in the first year, with a focus on inclusion and inclusivity. Dr. Smith will be discussing The Joys of Working with Government and Entrepreneurs in his presentation.

Dr. Diane Crocker

Dr. Diane Crocker is a Professor in the Department of Criminology at Saint Mary’s University. She specialized in research relating to legal or regulatory responses to problems, particularly those that disproportionately affect women. In her research, she explores ways to provide alternatives forms of justice, broadly defined. She has done work about: Restorative Justice; Criminal Justice Policies; Gender Based and Sexual Violence; Campus “Rape Culture”. She is a Research Fellow with the Muriel McQueen Centre for Family Violence at the University of New Brunswick and The Restorative Research, Innovation and Education Lab (Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie).

Dr. Crocker regularly advises government and community agencies on projects related to gender-based violence. Over the past few years, Dr. Crocker has been leading an evaluation of Standing Together with support from a team of student and community-based researchers.

Her presentation will go into further detail on the Standing Together Prevent Domestic Violence project.

Dr. Joniada Milla 

Dr. Joniada Milla is an Assistant Professor of Economics in the Sobey School of Business at Saint Mary's University. She is also a Research Associate at IZA Institute of Labour and Economics and a Research Fellow at Laboratorio de Interdisciplinario de Estadistica Social.

She completed her graduate studies in Economics (M.A. and Ph.D.) at the University of Guelph. She has held previous positions as Assistant Professor of Economics at Wilfrid Laurier University, and as Post-Doctoral Fellow at CORE (Center for Operations Research and Econometrics), Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium.

Dr. Milla’s research interests are in the fields of Applied Econometrics, Economics of Education and Labor Economics. Her presentation is titled Policy impact evaluation in teacher labor market.

Dr. Yasushi Akiyama 

Dr. Yasushi Akiyama is a Human-Computer Interaction researcher and assistance professor in the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at Saint Mary’s University. His research focuses on the design, implementation and evaluation of digital tools that support creative tasks.

The areas of his research interests include Human-Computer Interaction, Child-Computer Interaction, Digital Creative Tools, and Multimodal Interaction Technologies.

Dr. Akiyama will be presenting a research project that he did in partnership with a local company. His presentation title is Soccer Goalkeeper Performance Analysis Tool with Video Scene Detection.

Dr. Karly Kehoe

Dr. Karly Kehoe is Professor in the History Department and Canada Research Chair in Atlantic Canada Communities. Her current research considers settler colonialism and how religious minority migrants acquired and exercised colonial privilege in the north Atlantic world between c. 1750 and c. 1850.

Dr. Kehoe is the Convenor of the Scottish Historical Review Trust and a fellow of the Royal Historical Society. She is also the co-editor of the Histories of the Scottish Atlantic book series with Edinburgh University Press and the board chairperson of the Gorsebrook Research Institute for Atlantic Canada Studies at Saint Mary’s University.

She is an advocate of science diplomacy and is the past president of the Royal Society of Canada’s College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists, a member of the International Science Council’s standing committee on Freedom and Responsibility in Science, and a member of the InterAcademy Partnership’s Policy Advice Development committee. Dr. Kehoe is the co-founder of three programs to support academic researchers who have been displaced and forced to flee from their home countries on account of war, conflict, and threats of violence.

Dr. Kehoe’s presentation will be on “Exhibiting Orangeism in Inverness: Confronting a Complex Past”.

Dr. Danielle Tokarz

Dr. Danielle Tokarz, Associate Chemistry Professor at Saint Mary's University, specializes in the development of ultrafast, laser scanning microscopes.

The Toronto-born chemist completed her Ph.D in 2014 at the University of Toronto where she studied the nonlinear optical properties of carotenoid and chlorophyll molecules as dyes for nonlinear optical microscopy.

In 2015, she moved to Boston to take up a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada postdoctoral fellowship at the Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, where she developed a new three-photon microscope for intravital imaging of bone in mice skulls.

 Dr. Tokarz will discuss Remanufacturing Plastic Waste Locally in her presentation. 

Dr. Erin Adlakha

Dr. Erin Adlakha is an Associate Professor and Department Chair in Geology at Saint Mary’s University. Her research investigates new applications of accessory mineral chemistry, such as apatite, tourmaline, and rutile, to resolve uncertainties regarding the process and conditions under which hydrothermal ore deposits form. The ore minerals are used in common items such as rechargeable batteries and copper wiring.

Dr. Adlakha’s research combines field-observations with a variety of analytical laboratory methods. Her presentation will highlight the research work and long-standing collaboration with the Government of the Northwest Territories.

We want to give a special thanks to Springboard Atlantic for their involvement and contribution towards helping make Research Expo happen!

Saint Mary's University is a member of Springboard Atlantic, which is a regional network of offices at most university's and colleges in Atlantic Canada that support researchers interested in collaborating with partners to mobilize knowledge and protect results where possible.