(a.k.a. students)

Sabina Henry – MSc Candidate
(F2022 – present)

I am a MSc Biology student with a focus on forest ecology and evolution studying the adaptive potential of different Black Spruce provenances. To define adaptive potential, I will link individual performance, intra-provenance trait covariation and a climatic gradient. Personal interests include camping, cooking, and caring for my many houseplants.  

Nick Pianosi – Coop research assistant
(F2022 – present)

Hi I’m Nick! I’m a third year environmental science student with a specialization in ecology. Some of my interests are rock climbing, dungeons and dragons, and music!

Kelly Tran – Research assistant
(W2023 – present)

Hi, I’m Kelly! I’m a recent UW BSc Honours Biology Graduate, with specializations in Molecular Genetics and Bioinformatics (and a lot of environmental lab experience!). My personal interests include reading, baking, and gaming.

Catherine Zhang – Research assistant
(W2023 – present)

Catherine is a fourth-year undergraduate student studying Honours Environmental Science with a specialization in ecology and a minor in French. Beyond her interest in plant ecology, she enjoys writing, art, music, and telling complete strangers all about her cat.

Tanya Sarin – Coop research assistant, USRA awardee
(W2022 – present)

Tanya is an undergraduate student studying Honours Biology with a minor in French at the University of Waterloo. She enjoys going into the field to get hands-on experience, and also helping analyze samples and data in the lab. She spends her spare time painting, exploring trails and travelling.

(a.k.a. alumni)

Johnny Hernes – Part-time research assistant

Johnathan Hernes is a biochemistry student with a passion for plant science and agriculture. He is currently pursuing a job opportunity in Alberta.

Lina Aragón – MSc
(W2020 – F2022)

Lina studied the relationship among functional traits, performance and climate gradients in temperate trees using a greenhouse experiment. She is now doing her PhD with Dr. Feeley at U. Miami.

Reshani Abayasekara – Research assistant
(F2021 – S2022)

Reshani completed her Honors in Life Sciences with minors in mathematics and biology University of Waterloo. She is now doing an MSc in Statistics at U.Toronto.

Jahanvi Chauhan – Coop research assistant

Jahanvi is an undergraduate student studying Biology with a minor in Music at the University of Waterloo. She helped with lab and field work on two research projects. She is now gaining experience with veterinary work with the goal of attending vet school.

Victoria Stapells – Coop research assistant
(W2022 – S2022)

Leila Forsyth – Lab Manager
(S2021 – W2022)

Leila was the lab manager from May 2021 to May 2022. She is now at Toronto and Region Conservation Authority.

Cynthia Nomanee – Research assistant

Cynthia finished their BSc in Biology in W2022. They completed their honors thesis in paleolimnology and diatoms. They hope to pursue their Master’s in Ecology.

Ramisa Sekander – Coop research assistant

Ramisa worked her first co-op term with the Messier Lab in F2021. She enjoyed helping Leila and Lina with their sample processing and hopes to pursue biological research in the future. On her days off, you can find her painting, with friends, or sipping pumpkin cream cold brews at your nearest bakery.

Émilie Seyer-Lamontagne – MSc Candidate
(2019 – 2021 _ incomplete)

Émilie studied functional trait variation in the ectomycorrhizal communities associated with fir saplings. She was based at the Université de Montréal in the Chagnon lab. She is now a Laboratory Analyst at the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Christina Rossi – Lab Technician, USRA Awardee
(W2019 – S2021)

For her honor’s thesis, Christina tested the best methods for measuring tree growth from rings in eccentric tree cross-sections. She is now working on her MSc research on plant immunity at Laurier U. in the Castroverde lab. She also busies herself writing up her Honor’s research for publication.

Natalie Vuong – Lab Technician
(W2019 – F2021)

As a lab technician, she oversaw the Messier Lab garden, Green Labs Initiative, this website and assisted with daily activities including Lina’s 2021 greenhouse experiment. For her honors thesis, Natalie explored the relationship between tree ecophysiology and hosted communities of epiphytic bryophytes and lichens. She is currently writing this up for publication and working as a freelance graphic designer.

Arunemathi Shanmugam – Research assistant

Arunemathi Shanmugam is a student at the University of Waterloo studying Environmental Sciences with a specialization in Ecology. As a research assistant, she helped with projects in the greenhouse.

Justin Yu – Coop research assistant

Justin is a student at the University of Waterloo studying Environmental Science with a specialization in ecology. As a research assistant, he helped with various projects compiling and cleaning data and doing literature reviews.

Former Field and Lab Assistants

Field Assistants:
Florencia Cappiello (2018), Nikola Tutic (2016), Anke Roth (2014), Émilie Lavoie (2012), Natasha Salter (2012), Andréanne Ferland (2011), Carol Mordy (2011), Ricardo Cossio (2008)

Lab Assistants:
Mariette Laumond (2018), Gabriel Bergeron (2017), Sarah Gaignard (2016), Sierra Kaszubinski (2014), Sanga Shir (2014), Surbhi Patel (2013), Margretta Murphy  (2012-2013), John Lacson (2012-2013), Kevin Wang (2012-2013), Sarah Schwenck (2011-2012), Anjeanette McKay (2012), Casey Knoks (2012),  Meghan Iacuelli (2011-2012), Shahrzad Badie (2012), Irene Liang (2011), Jordyn Celaya (2011), Mélisanne Loiselle-Gascon (2008)

All of you make my research possible. Thanks for inspiring and motivating me.


Our People

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