April Showcase | Amazing YU Faculty and Student Accomplishments


April 29, 2022

At Yorkville University, we’re proud of the accomplishments of all our faculty and students both inside and outside of the classroom – be it publishing books or papers, winning prestigious awards, or presenting their research at conferences around the world.  

Here are some of the good news stories about Yorkville University’s talented community that we’d like to showcase this month:

MACP Professor Dr. Tricia Chandler

Dr. Tricia Chandler Publishes New Book

Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology professor Dr. Tricia Chandler recently celebrated the release of her book, entitled Co-Occurring Mental Illness and Substance Abuse Disorders: Evidence-Based Integrative Treatment and Multicultural ApplicationPublished by Routledge on March 25, the text details how mental health and addiction are interconnected through childhood trauma, how this affects neurobiology and neuropsychology, and the need for an integrated whole-person treatment for those of diverse backgrounds to enhance treatment outcomes.

“(My book) speaks to the need for counsellors to understand that childhood trauma has been found to be the underlying cause of considerable mental health and substance use issues for people,” Chandler explained. 

“To effectively treat those who have these issues, a therapist must be willing to develop a culturally sensitive understanding of treating people using best practices of both allopathic and complementary medicine that are useful to the unique and diverse populations needing these services.” 

Chandler said her textbook is aimed at new students and established counsellors who have not had the training in evidence-based holistic and integrative treatments that have advanced the field over the past 30+ years.

“All who contributed to this book have written the book for counsellors by counsellors,” she said. “We hope to make an impact on advancing treatment protocols for all who need co-occurring treatment.”  

Master of Education Student Canute Lawrence

Canute Lawrence Releases Poetry Collection

Master of Education in Educational Leadership student Canute Lawrence recently published a collection of poems written during the onslaught of COVID-19. 

Pathology of a Pandemic…chronicles the individual and collective experiences faced during the pandemic, reminding us all of our strengths, challenges, and our indomitable spirit to overcome adversities,” said Lawrence, a Toronto District School Board language and literature teacher, whose Master’s studies at Yorkville specialize in Educational Administration

In this anthology of poems, Lawrence – a Jamaican-Canadian stage actor who has been teaching for over three decades spanning Jamaica, the U.S. and Canada – tackles common issues of identity, death, anti-Black racism, the power of love and its ability to heal the human spirit run throughout the anthology of poems. 

“Words,” he said, “have the power to uplift or tear down. How will you use your words?” 

MACP Student Lesley McCuaig

Lesley McCuaig Featured on CBC’s The Current

Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology student Lesley McCuaig was recently featured on CBC’s The Current speaking about schizophrenia.

“I’ve listened to Matt Galloway and CBC Radio for a long time, and to be on CBC Radio’s The Current discussing the stigma associated with schizophrenia was an absolute privilege,” said the Hubbards, Nova Scotia native, who’s currently in her last semester of practicum at Yorkville. 

“When they approached me to be a part of the segment on schizophrenia, I thought this was an excellent opportunity to change the way we think about mental illness, particularly schizophrenia.”

Before deciding to change her career and enroll in the MACP program at Yorkville, McCuaig spent many years working in business administration. Now on the cusp of graduating, she’s ready to embark on a new path to “inspire, connect, motivate, and celebrate mental health through counselling and advocacy work.”

MACP Student Alexander “Sandy” Maclean

Alexander “Sandy” Maclean Wins AHC Award

Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology student Alexander “Sandy” Maclean was recently named the winner of the Association for Humanistic Counselling’s Outstanding Humanistic Student Award

The prestigious award is given to a graduate student who embodies and lives AHC’s values and engages in humanistic practices consistent with AHC’s mission and humanistic philosophy. 

“Winning the award means a lot to me. I have never been an academic overachiever; my neurodivergence meant school was always pretty hard for me,” said Maclean, who just finished his second semester of practicum at MyLife Counselling in Guelph, Ontario.

“So, to be nominated by one of my professors after she took a strong interest in my work, and then to WIN means the world.” 

Crediting Dr. Victoria Kress for getting him involved with the AHC after his first semester in the MACP program, Maclean said he often felt he needed to justify his strong interest in humanistic counselling and existential theory. 

So, to be awarded the AHC’s Outstanding Humanistic Student Award by “some of the greatest minds in the field,” Maclean said, was “wildly affirming that what I am doing and what I want to do is important and fills a meaningful need within counselling.”  

Maclean, who moonlights as a rock-climbing instructor, will receive the Outstanding Humanistic Student Award at the AHC’s upcoming 2022 Conference in Nashville on May 27-28.

BCA Professor Christopher McClure

Christopher McClure Wins Pair of Audio Verse Awards

Bachelor of Creative Arts professor Christopher McClure’s podcast, The Milkman of St. Gaff’s, won a pair of Audio Verse Awards, which celebrate the “greatest people and productions in immersive audio fiction around the world.”

Described as a Lovecraft-meets-Kafka fantasy/horror podcast, the McClure-written, -narrated and -produced podcast tells the story of Howie, a troubled young man who takes a job as a milkman on the island of St. Gaff’s as a means to escape war on the mainland, only to discover that his fellow milkmen harbour a dark and dangerous secret. 

McClure won the Audio Verse Awards for Best Storyteller of an Existing Production and Best Existing Story-Based Production.

General Education Professor Dr. Shahid Abrar-ul-Hassan

Dr. Shahid Abrar-ul-Hassan Presents at Prestigious Conferences

Dr. Shahid Abrar-ul-Hassan, a General Education professor at Yorkville University’s BC campus, has enjoyed a very productive year so far. 

In March, he presented at two of the most prestigious conferences in the world for language professionals and applied linguists – the American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL) Conference and the TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) International Convention. He served on two featured panels and gave two presentations at the conferences, back-to-back in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 

Dr. Hassan was also named the recipient of this year’s Nan Poliakoff Memorial Award by the Association of British Columbia Teachers of English as an Additional Language (BC TEAL). The Nan Poliakoff Memorial Award was established in 1998 by its namesake’s family, colleagues and friends in commemoration of her passionate commitment to excellence and her many contributions to the English language profession in British Columbia. The award, valued at up to $1,000, provides funding to support professional development for an English language educator in British Columbia.

Guest Lecturer Fab Filippo

Fab Filippo Wins Pair of Canadian Screen Awards

Yorkville University guest lecturer Fab Filippo recently won a pair of Canadian Screen Awards for Sort Of – the “big-hearted” new series he co-created, wrote, directed and produced alongside Bilal Baig for CBC. 

The series, about a gender-fluid millennial who straddles various identities, earned Filippo two trophies – one for Best Comedy Series and another for Best Writing in a Comedy

***Are you a Yorkville University faculty member, student or alumnus who would like to share your latest accomplishment with the YU community? If so, please contact [email protected]