and why they chose shad 


Erin Penney


Erin is an enthusiastic educator whose loves helping others get excited about science. She was particularly thrilled when she learned about the opportunity to co-direct SHAD at Mount Allison, as she is passionate about facilitating personal growth and empowering Canada’s youth. 
Erin graduated from Memorial University with a degree in Biochemistry before entering the workforce. She has a diverse background, working as a field biologist everywhere from remote northern Newfoundland to a deserted island in the Bering Sea. Erin now works as a laboratory instructor in the Department of Biology at Mount Allison. Here, she has developed strong interest in first year university success, and integrating experiential learning into the program curriculum.
In her free time, Erin enjoys staying fit (she recently became a certified personal trainer), gardening, running, hiking and camping. Erin also believes that it is important to give back to her community, she has served as a chair person on several fundraising committees and has recently started developing workshops to help women become more independent in the wilderness.


Justin Lim


Justin is best described as an adventurer and explorer, always eager to learn more about the world. He is an avid traveller (spending each summer across the globe), loves to get outside, and can't live without his daily cup of coffee. Justin completed his degree in Life Sciences, at Queen's University and is currently studying Medicine at the University of Toronto. He enjoys many laughs, off key signing and taking a ridiculous amount of photos. 


First attending 'Shad Valley' at UBC as a SHAD, returning to SHAD UBC as a Program Assistant in 2017, and working at SHAD Mount Allison as Program Manager in 2018, Justin is incredibly excited to be once again a part of the phenomenal magic that will be SHAD MtA.


Christine Gilroy

Christine is an outgoing individual with an infectious love for science and nature. She obtained both her BSc and MSc at Mount Allison University and believes that hands-on learning is key to engaging students in science. Christine is currently a manager in Mount Allison’s Fish Ecology and Aquaculture research lab that conducts a range of research from sturgeon to zebrafish. She has had many adventures from monitoring coral reef health on the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef to living on an island in the Gulf of Thailand. Christine attended “Shad Valley” at Memorial University as a SHAD in 2007 and is thrilled to be a part of SHAD MTA as Program Manager. In her free time, Christine enjoys hiking, kayaking, board games, woodworking, and playing music with her band. 


Nick Fernandez

Nick attended SHAD UBC in 2014 and is thrilled to be returning as a Program Assistant for a second time at MtA this summer! Although Nick is currently pursuing a degree in Biochemistry at Mount Allison University, he is also likes to be involved with the arts. He enjoys playing cello, piano and guitar with friends and chamber groups. Nick is also excited about issues of international development, working as a senior coordinator with Mount Allison chapter of the Student Refugee Program. In past summers he has worked with the Berman Zebrafish Lab at Dalhousie University and as an accompanist with Neptune Theatre School in Halifax. In his time off Nick likes to spend time in the outdoors and on the water, especially biking, hiking, surfing, diving and skiing.







David is a slightly eccentric educator who loves trying to make people laugh. Though not a SHAD fellow himself, this will be his fourth time working for the program. David previously served as a Program Assistant for SHAD McMaster in 2014 and 2015, and as an Academic Fellow in 2018. When he’s not with SHAD, David works at the Ontario Science Centre where he teaches science and makes bad jokes. David is a graduate of McMaster University’s Integrated Science program, and holds a Master’s degree in Science Communication from Laurentian University. For fun, David writes and answers trivia questions. He also enjoys playing and watching sports, doing improv comedy, playing guitar at a very beginner level, and writing short stories about his friends.

Peter brings 30+ years of corporate and entrepreneurial business experience both in the USA and Canada in a variety of sectors ranging from transportation, Educational Technology,  heavy construction equipment manufacturing to Christmas wreath manufacturing and exportation to name a few. Having lived and worked in the USA as a Corporate Business Manager with John Deere and Director of Marketing for a CASE equipment dealer covering Texas, TN and Georgia Peter became quite familiar with US customers and the US market regularly dealing with Fortune 500 firms as well as Small to Medium Enterprises.  

More recently, as President and owner of Wilson Wreath Company in New Brunswick, Managing Director of The New Brunswick Aerospace & Defence Association and now as CEO and owner of KAAMP Software Innovations Inc. and Strata-G Advisors, Peter brings a strong background in cross border trade, national and international business development, entrepreneurialism, marketing, strategy, channel management, acquisitions and manufacturing.

After completing his Bachelor of Commerce from MtA, Peter later went on to complete his MBA at the Krannert Graduate School of Business at Purdue University during his time working in the mid-West USA with John Deere. Peter, his wife Tanya and their two children moved back to Sackville 16 years ago and are fully immersed in the local community. They live on a 160 acre hobby farm just outside of town keeping busy with blueberries, garlic, horses, chickens, dogs and cats galore along with their full time careers and volunteer work.

Peter’s more recent experiences with SHAD Mta and as Business Coach/mentor for the Mta Reisman Internship program have inspired him to focus on our next generation of entrepreneurs and in passing down knowledge from his experiences learned over the span of his career. He hopes to match our budding entrepreneurs with the hundreds of thousands of dormant intellectual property sitting on shelves waiting to be commercialised for the benefit of our society and our region’s economic condition in an exciting new initiative soon to be launched.





Cara is a welcoming, fun-loving girl who is always down for a laugh and a treat. She truly loves to travel and explore new places, meet new people, and find a cat to pet. Cara completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Ottawa and then spent three years travelling before attending the University of Toronto Medical School. She is currently entering into her second year. 


This is Cara’s first year at SHAD and she’s so eager to begin the experience. She is looking forward to being in such a wholesome environment and meeting the rest of the SHAD family!



Everett Patterson

Everett loves learning. He is passionate about developing and sharing knowledge from all sorts of environments and disciplines. He gets his social fix by being involved in university politics, tutoring and TAing math, helping new students settle in, and saying hi to everyone he meets. He is a friendly guy who loves having conversations with anyone about anything. Everett enjoys being active and is big believer in the mental health benefits that stem from being physically active. He enjoys playing soccer and ultimate for Mount A or getting together with friends at the park or the gym to run around.

Studying Math and Physics at Mount A, Everett was very excited to hear that SHAD was coming to Mount Allison last year, having been a SHAD at Dalhousie in 2016. This year, he is even more excited to be a part of SHAD MtA as Recreation Coordinator. He looks forward to giving people the opportunity to unwind and have fun, allowing their brains to recharge in order to make the most of their SHAD experience.







Caroline is an outgoing and adventurous second-year Business student at Memorial University of Newfoundland. As part of her university cheerleading team, she is a gold medalist, winning the University World Cheerleading Championships in Florida in 2018. Her team also competed again this year. Caroline is passionate about youth leadership and thrives on empowering youth through her active volunteer role as a leader in her local Girl Guides of Canada unit.


Caroline attended SHAD at the University of New Brunswick in 2016 and thoroughly enjoyed meeting like-minded individuals from all over Canada. She cannot wait to relive the SHAD experience at Mount Allison, this time from the perspective of a Program Assistant.


As much as she adores her foggy hometown in Newfoundland, Caroline loves travelling and will never turn down the opportunity for an adventure. Her guilty pleasure is chocolate, and she admits she cannot go a day without it. Caroline spends her free time kayaking, swimming reading, camping, cheerleading and learning new things.

Yasna is a student at McMaster University in the Bachelor of Health Sciences Program, entering his fourth year of undergraduate studies. However, his interests extend far wider than his pursuit of a career in medicine. Formerly a longtime singer and drummer, Yasna has since become completely enamoured with creating original rap music, having picked up this passion while attending SHAD Laval as a student in 2015. Yasna is also a massive hockey fan, loving to analyze and discuss the game through the lens of statistics and advanced analytics. 


Aside from creating music and keeping up with the world of hockey, Yasna runs a self-improvement blog, in which he details the lessons he has learned from trying to optimize various areas of his own life. Furthermore, as an avid podcast listener and a non-fiction bookworm, he loves to learn about subjects that have nothing to do with his field of study, from astrophysics, to history and sociology. Above all, he loves nothing more than creating friendships and being part of a tight-knit community. That’s what SHAD is all about, and he can’t wait to help shape that experience at Mount Allison!





Saarah is a caring and outgoing individual and who loves being outdoors and travelling. She likes to hike, meditate and explore new places. She completed her undergraduate degree in Health Sciences at McMaster University. This was followed by a Master of Science in Global Health also at McMaster. During her Masters, she had the opportunity to travel to India and Eastern Europe where she learned about the importance of social determinants of health and the complexities in barriers to healthcare around the world. At this time, she also further developed her passion for reproductive health and mental health.  She is currently in her first year of Medicine and the University of Toronto.


Saarah is excited to be a part of SHAD Mount Allison this year as a Program Assistant. She hopes to further develop her skills as a mentor, and to be a part of this important journey for many SHADs!

Mousa is a recent graduate of Systems Design Engineering at the University of Waterloo. Currently, he works in technology consulting at Deloitte, based out of Toronto. He grew up in Mississauga, Ontario. Through his co-op experience, he’s worked at numerous companies doing jobs in user experience design and software development. He loves watching sports (especially all Toronto teams), travelling, hearing new perspectives, and coffee!


He went to SHAD in 2013 at Université Laval and worked as a Program Assistant at SHAD MtA last year! SHAD is a unique, inspiring and one of a kind program and has left a lasting impact on him. He’s wanted to be part of SHAD again since his experience 5 years ago, and is looking forward to an awesome summer ahead!





Grace is an energetic and warm individual who loves learning from others. She is currently studying at Queen’s University in the Concurrent Education program with a Biology major and French minor. She works as a research assistant in a cell biology lab and an electrocardiology research group. Her favourite research experience was presenting at a cardiology conference in Japan. She also volunteers with youth mentorship and high school tutoring groups. She is very excited to start attending medical school next year!


Grace enjoys traveling, especially with her family. She has recently started practicing hot yoga which has improved her self-reflection (and flexibility). She loves going to art museums and learning about art history. Her favourite painter is Jacques-Louis David. She recently completed her first bucket list item by seeing all 5 Sunflowers paintings by Van Gogh. The only sport she consistently follows and watches is figure skating. A rapid fire of her favourites: her favourite book is Slaughterhouse-5 by Kurt Vonnegut, her favourite show on Netflix is Planet Earth 2, and her favourite Jonas brother is Joe. Grace previously attended SHAD Laval in 2015 and is extremely excited to be a program assistant this coming summer.

Andrew is a recent Mount Allison graduate, who is excited to have the opportunity to spend more time in the beautiful town of Sackville NB! In the context of the ongoing climate and biodiversity crises, he finds passion in striving for environmental justice. Andrew studied Chemistry and Environmental Studies at MtA and will be pursuing an MSc in Environmental Sustainability at uOttawa in September. He enjoys running outside in any weather, and some say that he drinks too much tea. New to SHAD, Andrew is excited to be part of such an amazing program, and hopes to help empower youth to create positive change in their own communities.


Thank you for expressing interest in joining SHAD Mount Allison's 2019 Team. We are not currently taking any applications for this Shad season, please check again in the new year for hiring for 2020.