Speakers

Background
Dr. Samantha Yammine

Keynote

Dr. Samantha Yammine is passionate about empowering people to explore science by making it more familiar, accessible, and inclusive. She does this in part by sharing interactive science commentary and research updates on Instagram through short videos, emoji-filled captions, and engaging pictures. She’s created space for continued, multi-way dialogue about science that transcends geographical borders and the traditional gate-keeping of academia. A leader in digitizing science on social media, Samantha founded Science Sam Media to continue to grow the reach and impact of her science communication initiatives.

Samantha always takes an audience-first approach to share complex topics in clear and entertaining ways. She is a frequently requested speaker and event host who loves engaging folks with anything science, anywhere & everywhere – she’s hosted a livestream with an astronaut aboard the International Space Station, presented her research on the streets at Toronto’s busiest intersection, talked ringside with Muay Thai fighters about performance anxiety, and showed off model and real brains at 1am in a Yurt during an all-night art festival. She leads interactive workshops on science communication, personal branding, and social media to teach scientists and STEM professionals the skills they need to share their science creatively.

Dr. Yammine earned her PhD from the University of Toronto researching how stem cells build the mammalian brain before birth and maintain it throughout adulthood. In addition to her doctoral research, she co-authored a crowd-funded research study exploring the effects that #ScientistsWhoSelfie on Instagram can have on public perceptions of scientists. She’s also published in Nature and Science on communicating science online.

She’s produced, scripted, and hosted educational videos for companies like 3M, GE, Lady Speedstick, and Seeker. She also regularly appears as a guest expert in the popular media including appearances on TVO Kids, AsapSCIENCE, Leafs Nation Network, Netflix, CBC GEM, and a regular correspondent with LBC Radio UK, CBC Radio, and NewsTalk1010. She has both hosted and spoken at TEDx events, with her TEDx talk entitled “You Are a Molecular Masterpiece” receiving thousands of views.

Samantha is a member of the Editorial Committee for the World Congress of Science and Factual Producers, and the Board of Trustees for the Royal Canadian Institute for Science. She was the Founder and a Co-Producer of the first ever #ScienceIsADrag event, which she continues to run in Toronto in partnership with RCIScience, Geith Maal-Bared, and Shawn Hercules.

Diana Bye

Keynote

Hi! I am Diana and I am an intense lover of the human body and all things movement. I am a Certified Yoga, Mindfulness, and Meditation Teacher.

I am a Mom of three littles and one big one (he’s 19!). I am also a wife to one man, and like most of us- I wear many other hats.

What do I do on a daily basis? I use an effective combination of meditation, movement, and mindfulness to help my clients develop a healthy sense of self. This ultimately leads to a happier life with higher levels of self-care, confidence, love, and mobility.

My background: I am fully certified to teach Mindfulness and Meditation with a 200 hr certificate from Mindfulness Exercises. I have personally practiced mindfulness and meditation for over 15 years.

Yoga – I am an E-RYT 500 with over 10,000 hours of teaching. (that means I am experienced and highly educated to safely and effectively deliver life changing classes). Some of my trainings include:

  • Core Vinyasa Flow with Sadie Nardini and Tyler
  • Mccoy (200 HR) LYT Yoga Training with Lara
  • Heimann (200 HR) Hatha Restore and and Hatha Flow with Maureen Rae (100 HR).

I have a diverse (and pretty fun) background that encompasses business, fitness, psychology, and sociology. I studied Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), extensive Anatomy and Physiology, Yoga, Mindfulness, and Meditation.

I have over 30 years of coaching/teaching a variety of ages. I have had the pleasure and privilege of helping thousands of people live healthier and happier lives.

My promise is that I will bring education and positivity into each one of my sessions with you.

Namaste,

Diana


Guided Steps



Joely BigEagle-Kequahtooway

Steam

Joely

Joely BigEagle-Kequahtooway is an inter-disciplinary artist whose main source of inspiration is Tatanga aka Buffalo. She is a fashion and textile designer, visual artist, beader, storyteller and co-founder of the Buffalo People Arts Institute. She comes from a long line of Buffalo hunters and is Nakota/Cree/Saulteaux from the White Bear First Nations – signatory to Treaty 4.

She has degrees in Civil Engineering from the University of Calgary and Mathematics from the First Nations University of Canada. She loves to incorporate mathematics and geometry in her artwork and is inspired by the perfect symmetry in nature. Her mantra envelopes everything Buffalo as it connects her to ancestral memories, the land and is the manifestational glue that keeps her world together.



Sara McCreary

Host

Hello! My name is Sara McCreary and I have been an educator at the Saskatchewan Science Centre since 2019. I graduated from Lethbridge Colleges Fashion Design and Marketing program in 2010, and this spring I will be graduating with a bachelor’s (BA) degree in visual arts. I am Métis, and I love researching my culture and its traditional clothing-making methods. This inspires me to have a heavy interest in textiles and often use it in my artwork, especially e-textiles and fabric framework sculptures!

I had an unusual start working in a STEAM-based field. A few years ago, I was working at the Science Centre in a different position. I had left my role to go on to other things, including going back to university. When I applied at the Science Centre again, I originally applied for my old position, but was offered the role I am in now since I had gained more experience and skills. I was really scared at first, but eventually I realized that becoming an Educator was a perfect role for me. I never thought that I would be working in a STEAM-based field with my art background, but now I see that art is a very important component of STEAM-based careers. Whether I am sewing and coding a plushie kinetic game controller, or making tempura paint out of egg yolks and natural dyes, I have a lot of fun using my art background at the Science Centre.

Marjorie Lavallee

Elder

Marjorie Dressyman Lavallee was born and raised on Red Pheasant First Nation near Battleford, Saskatchewan. She was Associate Professor at University of Regina, FNUC in the Faculty of Indian Education for near 20 years. She has been in the field of Indian Education for the past 48 years. Humble beginnings for Marjorie, she started as a curriculum researcher with Indian Affairs and Northern Development in Ottawa and then as Principal at the age of 21 of a school in western Alberta. Currently, teaching university courses at the University of Alberta. She has been blessed with the opportunity to travel the world experiencing new cultures in South America, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, and Igloolik. 

She was selected by CESO to represent Canada in South America to help indigenous women and was recognized for her effort in the House of Commons. She is a member of the World Indigenous Peoples Permanent Forum in Geneva. She was invited to open the Indigenous Youth Symposium in Geneva. In 1998, she was honored in Geneva, Switzerland, United Nations for her continued involvement in International Indigenous Education. She was one of the first groups of Indigenous people to be invited to United Nations in 1978 representing First Nations peoples of Canada, to present a report on discrimination and racism. 

Achievements: won a scholarship from the Saskatchewan Woman’s Association; won the YWCA – Woman of Distinction Award in Education in Regina; Principal of Schools in Saskatchewan and Alberta; faculty visiting positions at the universities of Alberta, Mexico, La Pas, Bolivia, Australia, New Zealand, University of Regina, and Nunavut Arctic College, Igloolik, Iqaluit, Europe, and Lethbridge; appointed as University of Alberta Grand Council of Indigenous Elders. Vice-Chair; appointed as a Public Complaints Commissioner with the Saskatchewan Ministry of Justice on Civilian Oversight; Vice-Chair of Oskana Citizens Advisory board for twenty years; appointed to the National Citizens’ Advisory Committee on Community Reintegration; won the election as Vice Chair for the Indigenous Liberal Caucus for Saskatchewan; Instructor for Adult Education with Saskatchewan Polytechnic Institute in Regina; invited as an Aboriginal Elder to Rome, to the Vatican in celebration of the Canonization of St. Kateri Tekakwitha by Pope Benedict XV1. She did a reading of the life story of St. Kateri Tekakwitha in the Cree language:; Cree translator for NWT Legislative Assembly; co-authored a chapter in a book titled: “Aboriginal Education in Canada New Perspectives for the 21st Century: Pre-School/Early Childhood Education: Opening Petals “; completed eleven School Evaluations to date.