The York Circle Lecture and Lunch Series - March 2, 2019

Please join us for The York Circle Lecture and Lunch on Saturday, March 2 from 9am to 1pm. Please note the location change below.

Hear from four of York's leading faculty members on a wide range of interesting topics that speak to some of the key themes that define York University.

The York Circle Lecture and Lunch Series is held four times a year and is open to our community of alumni and friends.

Complimentary coffee, light snacks and lunch will be provided.

Saturday, March 2, 2019 | 9am-1pm

9am - 9:45am: Registration, Coffee and Light Snacks

9:45am: Opening Remarks

Location: Life Sciences Building - Keele Campus, York University





Event Schedule

First Session (10am-11am)

Session 1A - Nima Tabatabaei
Optical Point-Of-Care Testing: From Roadside Cannabis Detecting Devices to Tiny Digestible Cameras (SESSION AT CAPACITY)

Session 1A – Optical Point-Of-Care Testing: From Roadside Cannabis Detecting Devices to Tiny Digestible Cameras

Removing specimens from patients and transporting samples to laboratories for analysis has long been the standard of care in medical diagnosis and screening. However, thanks to the advancement of Engineering science and technology, the field of medicine is undergoing a fundamental change from the traditional approach to Point-Of-Care Testing (POCT) in which diagnostic and/or screening tests are performed using miniaturized biosensors at or near the location of the patient. This talk will focus on the idea behind POCT approach, its advantages and limitations as well as the design and development of a few of the optical POCT devices from the Hybrid Biomedical Optics laboratory at York University.

Speaker: Nima Tabatabaei - Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Lassonde School of Engineering and Director of Hybrid Biomedical Optics Laboratory 

Nima Tabatabaei is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Director of Hybrid Biomedical Optics laboratory at York University. Dr. Tabatabaei received his MSc in Materials Science and Engineering from the Sharif University of Technology (Iran) and later his Ph. D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Toronto in 2012. Dr. Tabatabaei carried out research for two years at the Harvard Medical School, Wellman Center for Photomedicine and Massachusetts General Hospital as a postdoctoral fellow before joining York University in 2014. His research interests are design and development of hybrid biomedical optics imaging technologies and point-of-care devices for applications in early disease diagnosis and screening.


Session 1B - Ethel Tungohan
Making Migrants Matter: The Migrant Domestic Workers’ Movement in Canada

Session 1B Making Migrants Matter: The Migrant Domestic Workers’ Movement in Canada

The purpose of this talk is to discuss the migrant domestic workers’ movement in Canada. Despite lacking Canadian citizenship, migrant domestic workers in Canada have fought for their interests. They do so by practicing what Tungohan calls the politics of everyday resistance and the politics from below. Based on one-on-one interviews with 103 migrant domestic worker activists and participant observation of 13 organizations, Tungohan argues that migrant domestic worker organizations meet migrant domestic workers’ needs in ways that migrant-sending and migrant-receiving states and other NGOs cannot or will not.

Speaker: Ethel Tungohan – Assistant Professor, Department of Politics, Faculty of LA&PS and Canada Research Chair in Canadian Migration Policy, Impacts and Activism

Ethel Tungohan is a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Canadian Migration Policy, Impacts, and Activism and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics. She is a co-editor of the book, “Filipinos in Canada: Disturbing Invisibility,” published by the University of Toronto Press in 2012. Her book manuscript, “From the Politics of Everyday Resistance to the Politics from Below: Migrant Domestic Workers in Canada,” won the 2014 National Women’s Studies Association Best Dissertation/First Book Prize. Her work has been published in numerous peer-reviewed academic journals and books. She is a strong proponent of socially-engaged research and spends much of her time organizing with Gabriela-Ontario, a Filipina feminist organization.



Break: 11-11:20am

Second Session (11:20am-12:20pm)

Session 2A - Karen Murray, Jesse Thistle and Calvin Lincez
Trauma, State Formation, Collective Memory and the Politics of Reconciliation in Canada

Session 2A Trauma, State Formation, Collective Memory and the Politics of Reconciliation in Canada

This panel brings together three scholars whose research speaks to debates over the contested meaning and practice of reconciliation. Jesse Thistle will speak about recovering oral archives within Cree and Métis populations in Saskatchewan, descendants of 1885 Batoche resistance fighters, whose narrative was relatively unknown in the national consciousness. Thistle will relay the impacts this remembering has had on him, his family, and people. Calvin Lincez examines the limits and possibilities of political reconciliation's transformative potential from the standpoint of collective memory. Karen Murray will discuss the relationship between the residential school system and state formation.

Speaker: Karen Murray – Associate Professor, Department of Politics, Faculty of LA&PS

The first generation in her family to attend university, Karen is the daughter of an Irish immigrant and the granddaughter of Volga German immigrants. Her entire life has been spent living, working and learning as a visitor on the territories of many Indigenous Peoples. Karen’s research aims to render visible and thereby subvert oppressive forms of power that are often invisible or treated as commonplace.

Speaker: Jesse Thistle – Ph.D. Candidate, History

Jesse Thistle is Métis-Cree from Saskatchewan and raised in Toronto. He is a Ph.D. Candidate in History at York University, and his doctoral work on Metis road allowance communities has won the Trudeau and Vanier Scholarships. He is also a Governor General medalist. Jesse is the author of the Definition of Indigenous Homelessness in Canada published through the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness, and his historical research has been published in numerous academic journals, book chapters, and featured on CBC Ideas and CBC Campus.



Speaker: Calvin Lincez – Ph.D. Candidate, Graduate Program, Political Science

Calvin ZL Lincez is a Mushkegowuk Cree of mixed descent and a Ph.D. candidate in the Graduate Program in Political Science at York University. His research uses the politics of reconciliation in Canada as an occasion and a lens for analyzing and critiquing contemporary Indigenous-settler relations in Canada. Topics of analysis include the relationship between Indigenous and Western political theory, democracy and decolonization, collective memory and political transformation.

Session 2B – W. Dale Stevens
How to Hack the Human Brain with Cognitive Neuroscience (SESSION AT CAPACITY)

Session 2B – How to Hack the Human Brain with Cognitive Neuroscience

Cognitive neuroscience – the study of biological processes underlying cognition – has led to incredible advances in our understating of the human brain/mind relationship. Tools of modern neuroscience, such as neuroimaging, neurofeedback, and neurostimulation, allow us to observe and manipulate the inner workings of the living human brain. In this talk, Professor Dale Stevens discusses how these tools are used to understand higher-level cognition unique to humans, how it changes across the lifespan and in neurodevelopmental disorders, and how we might enhance cognition or even reverse age-related cognitive decline with neurointervention techniques.

Speaker: W. Dale Stevens - Professor, Faculty of Health

Dr. Dale Stevens is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at York University where he is the Director of the York MRI Facility and the Cognition & Aging Neuroscience (CAN) Lab. He received his B.A. in Psychology and M.Sc. in Neuroscience from Carleton University, and his Ph.D. in Neuropsychology from the University of Toronto.  He conducted postdoctoral research in cognitive neuroscience at Harvard University (Cambridge, MA) as a Research Associate, then at the National Institute of Mental Health (Bethesda, MD) as a senior Research Fellow. He has been trained in animal neuroscience, human neuropsychology, cognitive neuroscience, and both animal and human neuroimaging. His program of research uses a combination of neuropsychological, neuroimaging (e.g., functional MRI), and neurostimulation (e.g., transcranial magnetic stimulation) techniques to study large-scale brain systems and processes that underlie higher-level cognition in humans, and how these are affected by healthy aging, as well as neurodevelopmental and other neurological disorders.


Complimentary lunch: 12:20-1pm
Event ends: 1pm

Register by using the button below; we'll send you a reminder closer to the event date.


Event Location

This edition of The York Circle Lecture and Lunch Series will take place on York University’s Keele campus in the Life Sciences Building .  For directions to Keele campus by car or public transit, visit and click on the appropriate heading.  If you plan to drive, you will be required to pay for parking.  Parking is available on a first-come, first-served basis. The closest public parking lots are:

  • Arboretum parking garage #80 on the map ($7.00 Flat Rate). Pull a ticket from the machine upon entry and pay at the pay station when leaving. Machine accepts cash, coins and credit cards.
  • Thompson Road ‘Pay and Display’ parking lot #79 on the map ($7.00 Flat Rate). You are required to purchase a ticket from the ‘Pay and Display’ machine in the lot and place it on the driver’s side of the dash. Machine accepts coins and credit cards only.