Lab Members

Graduate Students

Elysia Desgrosseilliers, BMus, MPH, BA (Honours), MSc

Elysia completed her honours and MSc theses with the SWell lab and is continuing her research as a Doctoral student in social psychology. She is studying women’s experiences in the Canadian Armed Forces.

“My first career was as a professional musician, playing for the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra and for the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). Discovering that I preferred music as a hobby rather than as a career, I returned to university to study public health. Although I was (and still am) passionate about the prevention of injury and illness, I couldn’t shake the idea of a full-time career in the military. I became a Personnel Selection Officer in the CAF and I returned to university to study psychology. During my undergraduate psychology degree, I became especially interested in social psychology and how an individual’s behaviours and thoughts are influenced by their surroundings. More specifically, I became interested in how a military woman’s experiences are influenced by working in the traditionally male work environment of the CAF. When I’m not studying or working, I can be found paddle boarding or enjoying a coffee and relaxing with a book.”

Elisa Do, BSc (Honours)

Elisa is a Masters student in the social psychology program at UVic. She is studying internalized queer stigma and body image. She is also interested in exploring how the intersectionality between being queer and a person-of-colour can affect body image.

“Body image is a topic that has always been meaningful to me in many ways. It’s incredibly fascinating to me how the way that someone perceives their own body can change depending on the people they meet, the things they experience, and the standards created by their community. I’ve personally witnessed the negative effects that stereotypes and societal standards can have on someone’s self-esteem and their sense of belonging. In a heteronormative society, the queer stigma that someone internalizes can also play an important role on what body image means to them. As a queer person-of-colour, I am curious about how the intersection of different identities affect someone’s beliefs about their body. Exploring this research at the SWELL lab not only allows me to learn about a topic I am passionate about, but also adventure my way around Victoria during my time at UVic! I love to go outdoors for a run or a hike, and when I’m staying in, a cozy show or book makes the perfect day for me.”

Erin Lowey, BA (Honours), MSc

Erin is a Doctoral student in social psychology at UVic. She is studying how friendships sometimes transition to romantic relationships.

Madeleine MacDonald

Maddy is a Masters student in the lifespan psychology program at UVic, co-supervised by Dr. Stinson and Dr. Paweena Sukhawathanakul. She is studying how young people with chronic illnesses can heal from internalized disability stigma by reconnecting with their bodies.

Kelby Mullin, BA

Kelby is a Masters student in social psychology at UVic. Kelby is conducting  research seeking to understand how people with disabilities heal from internalized disability stigma.

“I’ve always been interested in examining the unique differences and challenges we face as individuals. I like pondering about what makes you ‘you’, and how different lived experiences create different connections, perceptions, and ideas of self. I began my studies as an engineering/computer science major, but ever since I took a first-year psychology course as an elective I’ve been hooked.  Over the last six years, I’ve worked for several grassroots disability-related non-profit organizations. During this time, I noticed that there is a general lack of awareness and research that involves/is inclusive of people with disabilities (especially within psychology). What is published tends to focus on rehabilitation and how to ‘fix’ disabilities and the people with them. As a person who was born with a permanent disability myself, I truly believe that my disabled experience is invaluable and has shaped my interactions and who I am.  I would like to examine how other disabled people interact with the world around them as well – currently focusing on the process of recovering from internalized disability stigma. In my spare time I like to chill with my cat, play Animal Crossing, cook, and lay in my hammock as much as possible.”

Clea Sturgess, BA (Honours), MSc

Clea is a doctoral student in clinical psychology. She studies how internalized weight stigma and embodiment affect fat people’s psychological well-being.

Honours and Directed Studies Students

Teira Howden-Gareau

Teira is the SWell Lab manager and a psychology honours student co-supervised by Dr. Stinson and Dr. Sarah Nutter. She is studying weight stigmatizing beliefs and practices among mental healthcare trainees, with the goal of developing best-practice guidelines for creating safe therapeutic environments for fat people.