Trainees | Centre for Research in Integrated Care | UNB

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Centre for Research in Integrated Care


CRIC is dedicated to building health research capacity in New Brunswick. Our centre provides opportunities for undergraduate, master, doctoral and postdoctoral trainees by way of internships, employment, academic supervision and engagement in research projects

Current trainees

Kathryn Asher


Program: Post-Doctoral Fellow, CRIC

Research project: A pan-Canadian cross-sectional survey of registered dietitians’ perceptions and experiences of interprofessional collaboration, as well as their use of plant-based recommendations in the new Canada’s Food Guide.

Dr. Kathryn Asher is a postdoctoral fellow with the Centre for Research in Integrated Care (CRIC). Her primary field of specialization is health service delivery around nutrition care. She is also involved in research on pediatric to adult healthcare transitions for youth with complex care needs, as well as interprofessional collaborative practice among health workers across collaborative entities. She came to work at CRIC in the Fall of 2019 after having a number of people enthusiastically recommend Dr. Doucet to her. Since then, Dr. Asher has been excitedly developing new methodological and topic area competencies and is especially drawn to the lab’s work on systematic reviews.

Dr. Asher earned her PhD in Sociology as a Joseph-Armand Bombardier CGS Doctoral Scholar at the University of New Brunswick, where her research was positioned at the intersection of dietary behavior change, the sociology of food, effective altruism, and social movement outcomes. During her doctoral studies, she was a Visiting Scholar in the Department of Nutrition and Food Studies and the College of Global Public Health at New York University. She also holds a Master in Environmental Studies from York University as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Human Rights and Political Science from St. Thomas University. Dr. Asher has previously conducted research for various charitable NGOs where her research has received national and international media attention.

Tatum Burdo

Program: Third year medical student, Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick

Research project: The experience of newcomer children with complex care needs and the experience of their caregivers

I have a longstanding interest in newcomer health issues and wanted to pursue further research in this area for Dalhousie’s Research in Medicine requirement. I was attracted to the work that Dr. Doucet and Dr. Luke have completed in the area of healthcare navigation; I was eager to apply a newcomer health lens to their work, to better understand the experience of newcomer children, their caregivers, and the healthcare professionals supporting newcomer families. I am drawn to Dr. Doucet’s team for their extensive experience and expertise in qualitative research methods, and their willingness for me to apply that to my population of interest!

My RIM project explores the experience of newcomer children with complex care needs, as well as the experience of their caregivers, in New Brunswick. Through qualitative interviews with caregivers, healthcare professionals, and key stakeholders, I hope to better understand the experiences, needs, and services available to meet newcomer health needs for youth (up to 25 years old) with complex care needs in NB.

Prior to medical school, I completed a Master’s in Public Health degree. I intend to practice as a primary care provider for newcomer populations after medical school!

Monique Cassidy

M.Ed, BPr., BScKin

Program: PhD in Interdisciplinary Studies, UNB

Research project: Perspectives of young adults with complex care needs who have recently transitioned from pediatric to adult care

Current employment: Research Assistant, CRIC

Passionate in performance improvement, Monique Cassidy lends her diverse multi-disciplinary background in health, management and communications. As a kinesiologist, Monique demonstrated healthcare leadership in prevention and strategy during tenure as President of the NB Kinesiology Association.

She attained her BSc in Kinesiology at UNB and has completed Harvard ManageMentor. An active communicator and stakeholder relationship-builder, she has worked communications for non-profit, government and private industry upon attaining a Bachelor’s of Public Relations from Mount Saint Vincent University. Recently, she completed her Master’s of Education for Health Professions (UNB), with focused research efforts on interprofessional education with care gaps in regional chronic disease education and prevention.

Monique started the Interdisciplinary PhD program at UNB in 2018 and has worked both in communications and as research project coordinator for CRIC. She is thankful for the forward-thinking and innovative team environment at CRIC along with vast experiential learning opportunities. Innovative research she has worked at include:

  • case management for frequent health service users
  • telehealth science
  • determining research priorities to improve the integration of care for vulnerable populations in NB
  • NaviCare/SoinsNavi
  • CHILDBRIGHT Brain Based Disabilities innovative health app project
  • quality improvement for youth shifting from paediatric to adult care
  • QUEST-SJ research education group

Several projects, including Case Management and Transitions in Care, are steadily moving forward with patient recruitment and data analysis. As an emerging researcher and educator, Monique enjoys facilitating best-in-class research here in New Brunswick, addressing ‘triple aim’ indicators for improving patient care experience, improving population health, and solving health care cost inefficiencies. Accredited to CRIC leadership excellence, she envisions the future of health research and management as bright in filling the growing needs of NB employers and population.

A passionate teacher, she has taught and facilitated interdisciplinary health empowerment and coaching sessions. Her interests lay in the areas of innovation, collaboration and positive youth development. She loves reading and celebrating colleagues, friends and family.

Taylor Fearon


Program: Master of Nursing, UNB

Research project: Comparing patient navigation and case management in the care of individuals with complex care needs

Current employment: RN Patient Navigator, NaviCare/SoinsNavi

My name is Taylor Fearon and my current role within the CRIC team is Nurse Patient Navigator for NaviCare/SoinNavi, which is a research-based navigation centre for children/youth aged 25 years or younger with health care needs and their families in New Brunswick. My background is in nursing and I am currently in the process of completing the Masters in Nursing (MN) program through UNB.

My work with the CRIC team started when I was working on my undergraduate degree in Nursing. I was lucky to gain a summer research assistant position working closely with NaviCare/SoinNavi. During this time, I learned more about health research and became increasingly interested in perusing my studies and continuing to be involved with the CRIC team. The positive work environment and constant support and motivation from all team members increased my passion for nursing and health research. As a living laboratory, CRIC allows me to be constantly learning something new and this has been a great way for me to expand my knowledge and interests.

As the Nurse Patient Navigator, I am continually working on the intervention portion of the NaviCare/SoinsNavi project. This program is possible thanks to generous funding from the New Brunswick Children’s Foundation. I will soon be starting my thesis work for the MN program, with Dr. Shelley Doucet and Dr. Alison Luke as my supervisors. Moving forward, I hope to complete the MN program and continue being involved in health research within the CRIC team, while continuing to gain nursing experience. In the future, I am considering obtaining a PhD in interdisciplinary studies and becoming involved in health education as well.

Karine Légère


Program: PhD in Interdisciplinary Studies, UNB

Research project: Medical assistance in dying (MAiD) in Canada: Exploring the perception of healthcare professionals, patients and families

Karine Légère is a clinical nurse instructor at the Université de Moncton. In her role at UdeM, she teaches students in the class, laboratory and clinical settings. She received her BA and MA at the Université de Moncton. She has recently started a PhD in Interdisciplinary Studies at UNB.

Her research interest includes caring for patients with chronic conditions, gerontological nursing, ethics, palliative care and medical assistance in dying. During a friendly chat with a mutual friend and colleague about a goal to pursue her PhD, Karine learned of Dr. Shelley Doucet and the CRIC team. After some quick research, Karine was inspired and reached out to Drs. Doucet and Luke.

Currently, Karine is taking on coursework and attending diverse webinars and conferences to help formulate her research project. Her research is related to Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID) in New-Brunswick, with the possibility of taking on a more patient-centred focus within the community setting.

Her future academic career and research goals are taking shape as time is passing. She would love to stay in a university-setting and participate more actively in research.



Program: Post-Doctoral Fellow, CRIC

Research Project: Enhancing the quality of life of youth with complex care needs and their families through an innovative, multidisciplinary approach to improving transitions in care

Dr. Lillian MacNeill is a postdoctoral fellow with the Centre for Research in Integrated Care (CRIC). Lillian completed her PhD in experimental psychology from the University of New Brunswick in Saint John. During her graduate work, she led and supported projects exploring the patient perspective of addiction services in Saint John.

For her post-doctoral work, she is leading a project exploring beliefs and attitudes toward non-medical prescription opioid use in New Brunswick youth, as well as access to opioid use resources. She is also leading an evaluation of NaviCare/SoinsNavi, a patient-centred navigation centre for children and youth with heath care needs and their families in New Brunswick.

In addition to these projects, she is working on several provincially and federally funded projects with CRIC that focus on improving access to healthcare in New Brunswick for individuals with complex care needs and their families. Lillian is looking forward to continuing her work with CRIC and hopes to translate these research findings into real policy change in our province.

Luke MacNeill


Program: Post-Doctoral Fellow, CRIC

Research Project: Evaluating the usefulness of a mental health artificial intelligence (A.I.) chatbot in a healthcare setting

Dr. Luke MacNeill is a postdoctoral fellow with the Centre for Research in Integrated Care (CRIC). Luke earned his PhD in experimental psychology from the University of New Brunswick in Saint John. His graduate work focused broadly on the areas of mass media and health psychology. For his postdoctoral work, Luke is concentrating on the use of artificial intelligence in healthcare.

One of his major research projects is evaluating the usefulness of artificial intelligence applications (“apps”) for improving mental health among people with chronic health conditions. This project is funded in part through the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation’s (NBIF) Research Professional Initiative.

In conjunction with this project, Luke is leading several additional studies on the use of artificial intelligence in healthcare, as well as making contributions to various ongoing projects at the center. Luke is looking forward to broadening his interdisciplinary research skills working with the CRIC team. He hopes to continue contributing to healthcare research throughout his fellowship and beyond.

Funding note: Dr. MacNeill received funding through the Research Professionals Initiative (RPI), a joint collaboration of the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation (NBIF) and the New Brunswick Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour.

Jennifer Splane


Program: Master of Nursing, UNB

Research Project: The experiences of care providers caring for youth transitioning from pediatric to adult care

Current Employment: RN, Horizon Health

Jennifer Splane is a Master of Nursing student at UNB. She began working with the CRIC team in 2017 as the Nurse Patient Navigator for NaviCare/SoinsNavi, the New Brunswick navigational centre for children with complex care needs. Jennifer has great interest in the research side of healthcare and has worked as a Research Assistant for CRIC and Teaching Assistant for both the Bachelor of Nursing and Bachelor of Health.

Jennifer’s thesis, entitled Exploring the Practices, Experiences, and Needs of Care Providers when Supporting Youth with Complex Care Needs Transition from Pediatric to Adult Care, is a sub-study of the CRIC project, Improving Transitions from Pediatric to Adult Healthcare for Youth/Young Adults with Complex Care Needs and their Families. This project is currently in the data collection phase and is aimed at informing a transition strategy for youth/young adults in New Brunswick through an integrated healthcare approach.

As a Nurse Practitioner student and future researcher, Jennifer plans to continue her education with doctoral studies focused on improving healthcare delivery and health outcomes for Canadians by exploring and evaluating the role of nurse practitioners in this context. She would also like to continue to care for patients as a Nurse Practitioner in order to have a first-hand experience of patient needs in New Brunswick.

Naythrah Thevathasan

Program: Undergraduate MD program, Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick (DMNB)

Research Projects: The experiences of care providers using a patient navigation centre to support their care for children with complex care needs / Innovating pediatric behavioural assessments and care pathways

My name is Naythrah Thevathasan and I am a third year medical student at Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick. I was fortunate enough to be nominated and supported for the NBHRF summer studentship by Dr. Shelley Doucet and Dr. Alison Luke. I was privileged to have Dr. Doucet and Dr. Luke as my research supervisors for my Research in Medicine Project last summer where we completed a study looking at care provider experiences with NaviCare/SoinsNavi.

This experience inspired me to further pursue other health research opportunities. This led me to collaborating with Dr. Sarah Gander and her team at the New Brunswick Social Pediatrics group. Together, we pursued a project looking at care giver experiences of children with behaviour-related disorders with the health system.

NBHRF helped to support our project entitled, “Innovating Pediatric Behavioural Assessments and Care Pathways” which aims to identify and close the gap that exists between referral to care for children with behaviour-related disorders. We are currently in the process of reviewing our findings and writing a manuscript for future publication. The NBHRF summer studentship has afforded me the ability to foster my skills in health research and create meaningful and lasting professional relationships.

I feel fortunate to have been able to use my skill set as a former Public Health promoter and a medical student to help further health research in New Brunswick through the support of NBHRF. Support like this, cannot be measured and I will be forever grateful for the ability to have learned all that I have through this support.

Funding note: Ms. Thevathasan received a stipend from the NBHRF Summer Studentship 2019-20 program



Program: Post-doctoral Fellow, CRIC 

Krystal Kehoe MacLeod is a Post-doctoral Fellow with the Centre for Research in Integrated Care at the University of New Brunswick-Saint John.  She is an interdisciplinary scholar with training in the life sciences, international development studies, and public policy and administration. Her research focuses on: integrated home care delivery, equity in health and social care system and service reform, patient navigation, and emergency department avoidance and care transitions for older adults with complex care needs.  Krystal’s recent publications include articles/book chapters on the impacts of task-shifting and independent contracting arrangements on the home care workforce, social exclusion in caregivers, and the intricacies of ethnographic methodologies for research in long-term residential care homes. Krystal’s research and teaching are informed by her experience as a policy analyst with the Ontario Government and the Government of New South Wales, Australia.

Past trainees

Chibuike Akaniro

Program: MBA (Class of 2018)

Project: Strategic planning for the Centre for Research in Integrated Care (CRIC)

Current employment: Privacy and Security Remediation Partner at The Salvation Army Canada and Bermuda

During my MBA program at the University of New Brunswick, Saint John, I had the privilege to intern under the direction of Dr. Doucet.

First and foremost, while preparing to apply to internship positions at the time, I had a couple of industries and companies in mind. However, when the opportunity to intern with Dr. Shelley Doucet came, I decided to apply. Although I already heard so many great things about Dr. Doucet, my first impression of her was during the interview process. I experienced a firsthand feel of her passion and dedication. Those two values of passion and dedication align very profoundly with what I stand for. After the interview, I prayed to heavens that I get a call to come work with her and her amazing team also led by Dr. Alison Luke. Fortunately, I was offered the role - my amazing journey with Dr. Doucet started.

My primary role was to work with the team to develop a proposal and three-year strategic plan to establish the Centre for Research in Integrated Care (CRIC). I was also tasked with the development of a financial management plan to guide and track the use of research funds/grants. While I worked on these deliverables/assignments, I had the privilege of interacting regularly with Dr. Doucet and the team via regular team meetings and informal conversations. In those moments and throughout my stay, I was very connected with Dr. Doucet not only because she always clearly explained what her vision was, but also how she provided me with a lot of guidance and support. Dr. Doucet believed and trusted in me to get the job done. That meant a lot to me. As a matter of fact that motivated me to work harder and better for her. Speaking about hard work, Dr. Doucet is the master here, she’ll sometimes send me an email at almost mid night or in the early hours of the morning. Guess what, I totally enjoyed it because I was motivated to work hard for her given the way she guides and trusts me to get things done. Additionally, her constant words of support and encouragement. So many pleasant experiences with Dr. Doucet and her team!

As I round up here, any day I look back at how I worked with Dr. Doucet and her team, I can’t just help but smile. I smile for so many good reasons, most of which I have outlined above. I also smile at the joy she derives when the funding or grant she’s been looking forward to finally gets approved and disbursed. Those grants have kept her outstanding work in the area of health research going. Special thanks to all the donors, health agencies, and provincial governments that have worked and are still working with Dr. Doucet and her team – CIHR, NB PIHCI Network, University of New Brunswick, Government of New Brunswick, etc. Thank you!

Dr. Doucet and I have been friends and will continue to be. I will always be thankful for the amazing experience I had during my internship. Thanks as well to the entire team, and of course, UNB!

Jillian Allan

Program: Undergraduate Medical Education, DMNB, Class of 2024

Research project: Exploring interprofessional practice and collaboration experiences of post-licensure graduates from the Tucker Park health professions programs

My name is Jillian Allan, and I am currently a first-year medical student at Dalhousie Medicine New Brunswick (DMNB). I was first introduced to Shelley Doucet and the team through my undergraduate research supervisor who spoke very highly of CRIC. After conversing with Shelley about my interests and abilities, I was fortunate to be able to join the team in the spring of 2019 as a part-time summer student.

Throughout my time with CRIC, I worked on multiple projects centered around the impacts of patient navigation in the Canadian context, as well as a quality improvement project on interprofessional collaboration. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with CRIC and cannot overstate how supportive, professional and innovative this team is. It was truly an honor to have had the opportunity to work with such a unique group of skilled researchers.

Currently, I am working to complete my Research in Medicine Project with the Emergency Department at the Saint John Regional Hospital. As a medical student and future researcher, I plan to continue to explore research in the medical field and contribute to the ongoing wealth of medical knowledge. Throughout my career, I hope to play a key role in advancing current practices and raising important questions that pertain to primary and emergent care.

Sarah Ann Balcom


Program: PhD in Interdisciplinary Studies, UNB

Research project: Intraprofessional nurse collaboration: An exploration of professionalism and collegiality between registered nurses and licensed practical nurses

Current employment: Assistant Professor, Faculty of Nursing, UNB

Sarah Ann Balcom is an assistant professor at the UNB and a practicing registered nurse (RN) with Horizon Health Network. She completed her PhD in Interdisciplinary Studies in April 2020. Dr. Shelley Doucet was her supervisor, and her thesis was entitled Registered Nurses and Practical Nurses Working Together: An Institutional Ethnography.

Some of her previous academic accomplishments include the Governor General's Academic Medal, a New Brunswick Innovation Foundation Tri-Council Alternate Scholarship, and a New Brunswick Health Foundation Doctoral Award.

Jamie Clark

Program: Undergraduate MD Program, Memorial University, St. John’s, Nfld

Research project: Environmental scan of memory clinics in New Brunswick

My name is Jamie Clark and I am a 4th year medical student at Memorial University in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. My relationship with CRIC began in the fall of 2018 as an undergraduate student with minimal research experience. I have since had the pleasure of working on a wide range of projects, each with the common goal of improving the patient experience for individuals with complex care needs.

 As a 2019 summer student, the bulk of my efforts were directed towards a project that aimed to improve transitions from pediatric to adult healthcare for youth/young adults with complex care needs and their families. The role that this project played in my development as a researcher cannot be overstated. As a medical student looking to fulfill a research project of my own, it was an easy decision to team up with Dr. Shelley Doucet and Dr. Alison Luke as my co-supervisors. With their expertise and guidance, I hope to soon complete an environmental scan of New Brunswick that will identify memory clinic-type services for those with or at risk of dementia and their caregivers.

 My feelings toward completing this project can only be described as bittersweet. Bitter, as I have thoroughly enjoyed uncovering the landscape of dementia care in New Brunswick, but also sweet, knowing that my relationship with CRIC can only grow from here. I look forward to collaborating with this group as I progress throughout my medical career and I encourage others to do the same. This team is truly special.

Jennifer Clarke

Program: Bachelor of Medical Sciences with an Honours Specialization in Interdisciplinary Medical Sciences student at Western University

Research project: Environmental scan of patient navigation programs in Canadian trauma care settings

During the summer of 2020, I worked at the Centre for Research in Integrated Care under an NBHRF Summer Studentship Award. I have been leading an environmental scan on trauma patient navigation. I am very grateful for this opportunity to not only learn how to work within a research team and about patient navigation but also the chance to evaluate our healthcare system through a critical lens.

I am Fredericton native headed into my fourth and final year at Western University completing a Bachelor of Medical Sciences with an Honours Specialization in Interdisciplinary Medical Sciences. I am currently applying to medical school and I hope to carry out further research during my education and future work. I came to know Dr. Shelley Doucet when my mum attended one of her presentations and my mum called me immediately after, telling me I needed to get in contact with Dr. Shelley Doucet as she would be such a great role model! I then researched the CRIC and was very intrigued by the work they were doing especially with patient navigation and NaviCare.

I sent her an email and not long after that I was meeting with both Dr. Shelley Doucet and Dr. Alison Luke to discuss applying to the NBHRF Studentship. Although we were working remotely due to the pandemic, I felt connected and welcome within the research team from the very first Monday morning Zoom meeting. This project was my first introduction to qualitative research, and it was a steep learning curve with such a positive team atmosphere and the support from everyone. This summer it was really easy to pour all my efforts into this project because patient navigation quickly became something I am very passionate about.

We have thus far completed 35 semi-structured interviews with 37 major trauma programs across the country and we are in the midst of organizing our preliminary data. We have also begun to draft our paper that will hopefully help establish trauma patient navigators not only here at home in NB but also across the country. One unique opportunity with this project is that we are going to possibly present our findings at the Trauma Association of Canada conference to inform everyone across the country possible strategies to implement within their own programs.

It is a real eye-opening experience to see the research that I am involved in have the ability to have such an impact on the Canadian healthcare system and ultimately the patient outcomes and patient experiences in trauma centres. Working with the CRIC has been such an incredible learning experience in a very positive and encouraging environment.

Also, I have enjoyed being back home in NB this summer with all the beautiful beaches and trails; the stunning outdoor landscape here is not something you come across in southern Ontario. I am very excited to be continuing with the CRIC part-time during the school year to continue to be involved with this project but also other projects at the CRIC.

I want to give my sincerest thanks to NBHRF, Dr. Shelley Doucet and Dr. Alison Luke for the opportunity to work on this research project. I would also like to thank everyone at the CRIC for creating such an upbeat and inspiring atmosphere and for all the help they’ve given me over the summer!

Funding note: Ms. Clarke received a stipend from the NBHRF Summer Studentship 2019-20 program

Poppy Jackson

Program: BA Combined Honours in Political Science and Economics, Dalhousie University

Research Project: Readers theatre research project

Current Employment: Research Assistant (Part-time), CRIC

My name is Poppy Jackson and I have been a student with CRIC since the summer of 2019. I originally joined the team after receiving an NBHRF summer studentship award in 2019 and I have since had the opportunity to continue working at the Centre throughout my undergraduate studies at Dalhousie University, where I am entering my fourth year as a BA honours student in Political Science and Economics.

Working at CRIC has allowed me be involved with various research projects, the most notable of which include a scoping review on the use of theatre as a knowledge translation (KT) tool in health research, developing and conducting a study on Readers Theatre as a KT approach, and a scoping review on the impact of patient navigation.

The research and teamwork skills I have gained through my experience at CRIC are invaluable. Being able to take the lead on two of these projects has taught me how to conduct systematic literature searches; write a scoping review protocol and prepare it for publication, work collaboratively with a team to develop study methods; complete a research ethics application; and even present my research to professionals.

Pitching my study on Readers Theatre as a KT approach at the 2019 Patients’ Den (co-hosted by the NB SPOR PIHCI and MSSU networks) and winning funding to continue this project has been one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences I have had during my time at CRIC. Since then, I have been able to pilot this study at a workshop and am now working on new methods and sites to move forward with the project while adapting to our ‘new pandemic normal’.

In the meantime, I am gaining new experiences while working on data extraction and data analysis for a scoping review on patient navigation, as well as assisting with the writing of the paper. I am excited for the opportunities to author a paper and move forward with my research at CRIC this year, while also preparing to move on to my next academic endeavour. I am looking forward to beginning a master’s degree studying international relations after completing my undergraduate studies, perhaps with a focus on health policy thanks to my time spent working at CRIC!

Funding note: Ms. Jackson received a stipend from the NBHRF Summer Studentship 2018-19 program; and won $2,500 from the NB SPOR PIHCI and MSSU co-sponsored 2nd annual 2019 Patients’ Den event.

Katherine Kelly

Program: PhD Interdisciplinary Studies, UNB 

Research Project: Integrated health care delivery services for children and their families

Dr. Kelly completed her PhD in June 2021 under the supervision of Drs. Shelley Doucet and Alison Luke. Kate was drawn to CRIC due to its inclusion of patients and caregivers in the entire research process (known as patient-oriented research) and the centre’s direct and innovative connection between research and community-based health services in New Brunswick.

 Dr. Kelly’s doctoral research focused on investigating peer-to-peer support on social media for families of children with complex care needs. Dr. Kelly is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Health Centred Research Clinic at the University of Prince Edward Island.

 Funding note: Dr. Kelly received an NBHRF Doctoral Scholarship award.

Jillian Lamb

Program: BSc. Biology with Honours, UNB

Research project: Caregiver burden: Impacts and experiences of those caring for children with complex needs

My name is Jillian Lamb and I am a 2019 UNB graduate. Originally hailing from a rural community in Nova Scotia, moving to the “big city” of Fredericton was a huge change for me. Determined to make the most of my experience inside and outside of the classroom at UNB, I completed a Biology Degree with Honours and a 14-month co-op program certificate.

Having an interest in breaking down the gaps to accessibility for families and children with complex care needs, I was introduced to Navicare/SoinsNavi through one of my mentors. Realizing the similarities between the work they were completing and my own passions, I was thrilled to complete my last co-op term with Navicare/SoinsNavi the summer before my final year.

Not wanting to stop working with Navicare/SoinsNavi, I turned my summer research projects into my final honours thesis. During my time with Navicare/SoinsNavi I worked on the Quick Strike project, helping qualitatively analyze the interviews a past Research Assistant had transcribed.

My two main projects focused on the current need to improve collaboration amongst health workers and caregivers for families with children with complex care needs, as well as the current burden caregivers of children with complex care needs are facing across Canada, specifically NB and PEI. I am currently working to submit three papers to journals for publishing.

Always being open to new possibilities and job avenues, I am currently looking into a career in pediatric medicine, focusing on working with children with complex care in rural communities. Through my time with Navicare/SoinsNavi, I learned to appreciate the efficacy of evidence-based academia and the dedication it requires to create systemic change in healthcare. I plan to continue to advocate for vulnerable populations by remaining active in the research field, combining my motivation to improve current healthcare gaps and the ways we can optimize patient quality of life.

Kerrie Luck


Program: Post-Doctoral Fellow, CRIC

Dr. Luck recently completed her Postdoctoral Fellowship with CRIC. Dr. Luck is an occupational therapist with research interests in tobacco use reduction and policy; program design and evaluation; healthcare; and healthcareservice delivery.

Dr. Luck’s research, exploring the experiences with occupational disruption and adaptation of individuals with chronic disease during the COVID-19 pandemic, allowed her to research an understudied and novel topic while combining her interests by exploring healthcare and service delivery through an OT lens.

Funding notes: Dr. Luck received a Studentship/Fellowship Award from NBHRF for a project entitled "Informing a transition strategy for children with complex health care needs and their families in New Brunswick".

Simal Qureshi

Program: Master of Applied Health Services Research, UNB

Research project(s): Cultural competence in primary care / A needs assessment of community resources and services for people with cancer and their families in New Brunswick
Current status:
Undergraduate MD student, Memorial University, St. John’s, Nfld

My name is Simal Qureshi and I have just completed a Master in Applied Health Services Research at UNB. I was fortunate enough to have three incredible supervisors, two of whom are Shelley and Alison. I first came to know of Shelley through a friend who also had her as a thesis supervisor. She had nothing but the highest of praise for Shelley and the extraordinary work she had performed with the Centre for Research in Integrated Care.

Shelley and her team’s passion and drive appealed to me and I attended the annual NBHRF conference which Shelley and Alison were speaking at. After listening to their presentation, I quickly became excited as I knew there was much I could learn from, which also aligned with my passions and interests in research. I mustered up the courage to introduce myself. I explained to them the idea for my thesis and passion for research, particularly how I wanted to grow as an academic student and become better informed of common healthcare barriers endured by racial minorities.

Both Shelley and Alison were kind enough to take me on and fast forward one year later, I’ve just defended my Master’s thesis. This is all because of Shelley and Alison’s guidance, encouragement, and hard work. My research is focused on cultural sensitivity experiences of South Asian patients accessing the primary care system. Exploring research in a field related to both health and cultural sensitivity were substantial goals for me when I started this program as I plan to venture into the healthcare field one day.

This research has provided extensive insight on South Asian minorities’ experiences and how improvements can be made to foster a more inclusive environment, as well as diminish barriers ethnic minorities may face when accessing the primary care system.

Not only have Shelley and Alison inspired and supported me in my own personal research but they have also been a tremendous part of an internship I completed in the past year. This internship was in partnership with the Canadian Cancer Society and is focused on conducting a needs assessment of community resources and services for people with cancer and their families in New Brunswick. Unfortunately, COVID-19 did temporarily halt our progress on this project; however, Shelley and Alison will continue on with the project this fall, as I will be starting medical school.

This project was also completed in partnership with MITACS, a national, not-for-profit organization dedicated to helping students advance their research, foster collaborations, and establish prominent research networks. We were fortunate enough to work with MITACS and secure greater funding for our research project, as well as have the opportunity to cultivate community connections and workplace relationships.

All in all, I’m incredibly grateful to Shelley, Alison, and the CRIC for all the support, insight, and knowledge they have shared with me. With their profound help and education, I have not only improved as an academic student and leader but will be a stronger physician one day because of them.

Funding note: Ms. Qureshi received funding from the MITACS Accelerate internship program.

Amy Reid


Program: Master of Applied Health Services Research, UNB

Research project: Exploring the role of lay, peer, and professional patient navigators in Canada

Current employment: Project Coordinator - COGNISANCE, CRIC


I completed my internship at UNB for my Master’s in Applied Health Services Research in the summer of 2018. I enjoyed working with a tight-knit group where I had support from many perspectives and different levels of experience. I completed my degree requirements in May 2019, and soon after that, I began working full-time as a Research Assistant at CRIC. I was thrilled to be able to provide support to other students and various project partners

Fast-forward to 2020, I took the opportunity to apply and eventually accepted the position as a Project Coordinator in June 2020 for the “COGNISANCE” project. (Co-designing dementia diagnosis and post-diagnostic care). Learning from Dr. Doucet and Dr. Luke during my master’s degree and then working full-time at CRIC has given me so many opportunities to improve my existing skills and foster professional and personal relationships with individuals across disciplines. I am looking forward to whatever may come next.

Gaurav Sharma

Program: MBA, UNB (Class of 2018)

Project: Strategic planning for NaviCare/SoinsNavi

Current employment: Project Manager with Metro Standard Ltd.

Gaurav Sharma came to work with Shelley Doucet and Alison Luke through a UNB MBA internship in 2018. Gaurav was drawn to the NaviCare/SoinsNavi team for their innovative, forward-thinking, and problem-solving approach. He witnessed team members contributing to the project by sharing their inputs for establishing strategic goals and initiatives. With his business consulting development project, Gaurav provided a three-year based strategic and financial plan for NaviCare/SoinsNavi.

The aim was to help establish a disciplined approach in producing fundamental decisions and actions to shape and guide the future course of action for NaviCare/SoinsNavi in delivering social value. The rationale behind this report was to establish a broad system of strategic management, wherein the information on ongoing activities and processes is collected and align with the resources and actions to deliver the value proposition. Gaurav believes NaviCare/SoinsNavi will have a positive impact on fulfilling the care needs of the New Brunswick community.