Join us in Toronto for this show as part of Science Literacy Week!
Cylita Guy is a PhD candidate and ACM SIGHPC/Intel Computational and Data Science Fellow in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Toronto. Broadly interested in zoonotic diseases and their wildlife reservoirs, Cylita’s research focuses on bats and their pathogens. Using both field surveys and computational methods she is investigating why bats seem to be good at carrying viruses that they sometimes share with humans, but rarely get sick from themselves. When not in the field catching bats or at her computer analyzing data, Cylita looks to help others foster their own sense of curiosity and discovery about the natural world. In conjunction with the High Park Nature Centre Cylita has started a Junior Bat Biologist program to engage young, future scientists. She also works as a Host at the Ontario Science Centre, educating the public about diverse scientific topics. Finally, Cylita’s hilarious field exploits are featured in a general audience book titled Fieldwork Fail: The Messy Side of Science! In her down time, you can find your friendly neighborhood batgirl chasing her next big outdoor adventure.
David C. Evans holds the Temerty Chair in Vertebrate Palaeontology and oversees dinosaur research at the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM). He is also an Associate Professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Toronto. David is an Ontario-born researcher who is recognized as an authority on the rich dinosaur fossil record of Canada. As a curator, David helped develop the ROM's dinosaur galleries, and was Lead Curator of the major travelling exhibition Ultimate Dinosaurs. He has been featured on numerous television shows, and most recently, David was co-creator of the HISTORY series Dino Hunt Canada. David’s research focuses on the evolution, ecology and diversity of dinosaurs, and their relationship to environmental changes leading up to the end Cretaceous extinction event. Active in the field, he has participated in expeditions all over the world, including the Africa, Mongolia, and Canada, and has helped discover 10 new dinosaur species in the last five years- including the remarkable horned dinosaur Wendiceratops from southern Alberta, and the wickedly armoured Zuul named after the Ghostbusters movie monster.
Renee Hlozek is an assistant professor at the Dunlap Institute within the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics at UofT. She was born in Pretoria, South Africa, where she also did her undergrad degree. She did her masters at the University of Cape Town before moving to the UK in 2008 as a South African Rhodes Scholar. After four years as the Lyman Spitzer Fellow at Princeton University, she moved to Toronto in 2016. Her work uses data from telescopes around the world to test the predictions of novel cosmological theories about our universe, how it started, what it contains and how it will end. She was elected as a 2013 TED Fellow and a Senior Fellow for the years 2014-2015.
Vanessa Vakharia is the founder and director of The Math Guru, a super cool boutique math & science tutoring studio in Toronto. She has her Bachelor's of Commerce, Teaching Degree, Diploma in Graphic Design and Master's in Math Education. She specializes in teenage engagement in mathematics education, with a focus on encouraging young women to pursue STEM related fields as well as reinventing media representations of females as they intersect with math. She travels globally engaging audiences with her workshop, “Imagining a World Where Kim Kardashian Loves Math,” encouraging teenagers, teachers, and EVERYONE to re-interpret and re-invent traditional stereotypes of what it means to be a “math person.” She is also a founding member of Goodnight, Sunrise, a rock n roll band where she plays the keytar and belts lead vocals. Yes, she totally wants to be a rock star, who wouldn’t? Mindy Kaling is her idol and Vanessa believes that she should be yours too.
Dan Weaver (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept. of Physics, University of Toronto) is studying climate change, ozone depletion, and the Arctic atmosphere. He collects research data using a high-resolution spectrometer at the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL), near Eureka, Nunavut (80°N). As an educator, Dan has taught in classrooms and created educational programs for organizations such as Science Rendezvous. He gives regular public talks to connect University research with the public and is an Ontario College of Teachers certified teacher. Dan is also a musician, and an advocate for science funding and evidence-based public policy decision-making.