The Canadian Committee of Graduate Students in Education (CCGSE/CCÉÉCSÉ) is the graduate student caucus within Canada’s national network of educational researchers, the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE). Our goal is to build an inclusive community to support professional and social networking, collaboration, research skills, and idea exchange between diverse, emerging graduate scholars.

Students are enrolled in CCGSE automatically by selecting the student membership fee for the CSSE conference. We welcome your membership and participation as well as your ideas for projects and conference activities that enhance our experiences as a group of students.


Kelly Zian Zhang


anne.zhang at


Henry Ssali


henry.ssali at


Executive Members (2022-2023):

  • Mentorship Award Co-chairs: Nabila Kazmi (Victoria) & Rob Grant (Ottawa)
  • Program Chairs: Amanda Battistuzzi (Ottawa) & Thu Le (Windsor)
  • Secretary: Ariadne Jevnikar (Lakehead)
  • Communications: Rakha Zabin (Brock)
  • Director of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, Indigeneity, and Accessibility (EDIIA): Sasha V. Nandlal (PEI)
  •  Members-At-Large:
    • Amanda Dunbar (Concordia), Ryan Collis (York)

Meet the Team

Co-President (Outgoing) – Zian (Kelly) Zhang

Zian (Kelly) Zhang is a Full-time Ph.D. student in the curriculum and pedagogy program at OISE. She completed her OISE master’s degree in the Curriculum Studies and Teacher Development program in 2016. Kelly’s research interests focus on education policy and leadership. Currently, she is a Research Assistant for the SSHRC Creating Equitable Structures in Early Secondary School Mathematics project. She also worked as GA for SSHRC Reciprocal Learning in Teacher Education and School Education between Canada and China project. She serves as Co-President at the Canadian Committee of Graduate Students in Education (CCGSE), which is the graduate student caucus within Canada’s national network of educational researchers, the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE).

Co-President (Incoming) – Henry Ssali

Henry Ssali is a doctoral candidate focusing on Educational Leadership and Policy at the University of Toronto.. His core research interests examine whether policy is loosely managed and how institutional policies affect street-level bureaucrats in higher education. He holds an MA  from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) and a BA  in International Relations from the University of Toronto. Having served in several volunteer and leadership positions at OISE, U of T and beyond, Henry was recognized in 2021 as an emerging leader by the Civic Action Leadership Foundation. He has also been awarded several accolades for his social justice work including the Arbor Award (U of T’s most prestigious volunteer award). Henry is currently serving as Vice-President Internal for the OISE Alumni Association, President of the Leadership, Higher, and Adult Education (LHAE) Departmental Students’ Association (DSA), Member of the U of T Graduate Education Council (GEC) and has previously served as Vice-President Communications, and Vice-President Academic for LHAE DSA as well as an elected student representative of the OISE Council (the highest decision making body at OISE).

Director of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, Indigeneity, and Accessibility (EDIIA) – Sasha V. Nandlal

Sasha V. Nandlal is a PhD student in Educational Studies from the University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI) and is supervised by Dr. Tess Miller has been a secondary teacher for the past nine years in her home country of Trinidad and Tobago. Her areas of research interest are Physical Education, Inclusive Education, Technology in Assessment, Leadership and Curriculum Development. A lifelong learner, she views the education system as a microcosm of society offering opportunities to test, learn, and improve proficiency.

Program Co-Chair – Amanda Battistuzzi

Amanda is a doctoral student at the University of Ottawa. She holds a Master of Education, Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and French as a Second Language, as well as a Bachelor of Education. Her teaching experience includes middle to upper level core French courses. Her research interests include core French teacher education and language learning experiences.

Program Co-Chair – Thu Le

Thu Le is a full-time PhD Candidate in Educational Studies at the University of Windsor. Her field of specialization is Social, Cultural, and Political Contexts in Education. She earned a master’s degree in TESOL. Before commencing her doctoral program in Canada, Thu was a tenured ESL lecturer at Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology and Education, Vietnam, for ten years. Her research interests lie in technology-enhanced teaching and learning, learner autonomy, online learning, and internationalization in higher education. She is currently doing research regarding the international student acculturation process.

Mentorship Award Co-Chair – Nabila Kazmi

Nabila Kazmi is a 3rd year PhD candidate at the University of Victoria. She holds an undergraduate degree in Computer Engineering and a Masters in Education. Her research interests are in social justice, intersectional feminism, feminist geography and adult education.

Mentorship Award Co-Chair – Robert Grant

Rob Grant (he/him) is a PhD Candidate at the University of Ottawa. He holds a BA in second language teaching, an MEd in education, as well as a Master of Teaching. He has been teaching FSL in the elementary and secondary boards since 2019. His research interests focus on the experiences of queer French as a second language (FSL) teachers as they navigate heteronormative teaching.

Secretary – Ariadne Jevnikar

Ariadne is a PhD student at Lakehead University in the Educational Leadership and Policy Studies stream. She is a certified member of the Ontario College of Teachers and has taught K3 – Grade 12. Ariadne’s research explores how high school principals influence the school culture for sexual and gender minority youth.

Communications – Rakha Zabin

Rakha Zabin is a PhD candidate currently enrolled in the Joint Ph.D. Program as a full-time student at Brock University. Her field of specialization is Leadership and Policy Studies. Her doctoral dissertation explores international graduate student experiences in Ontario in alignment with the policy pieces based on the framework of transformational leadership. Earlier, she pursued her Master of Education in the field of Administration and Educational Leadership and her Master of Arts specializing in TESOL.

Ryan Collis is a PhD student in the Faculty of Education at York University, working in the intersection of autism, expertise, and Science Fiction to discover future imaginaries where autistic students are truly supported. He holds degrees in English (BA, Queen’s ‘99), Computer Science (BScH, Queen’s ‘00), Education (BEd, OISE ‘05), and Science and Technology Studies (BScH, York ’19; MA, York ‘20). Ryan has been a high school teacher in the York Region District School Board since 2006, serves as the Graduate Student Officer of the Canadian Educational Researchers’ Association (CERA), and is a founding editor of the Canadian Journal of Autism Equity.

Prix du mentorat CCÉÉCSÉ

Congratulations to Dr. Mindy Carter at McGill University, who is the recipient of the 2022 CCGSE Mentorship Award!


Thank you to all those who attended! A copy of the PowerPoint from the event can be found: CCGSE – 2021 Fall Event

Many thanks again to all those who were able to join us for the CCGSE workshop “All About The Literature Review” in March. The Zoom report says 75 folks attended, which is fantastic!

The Zoom recording and slides have been uploaded to our Google Drive, and should be accessible via the following link:

CCGSE Mentorship Award

The Canadian Committee of Graduate Students in Education (CCGSE) Mentorship Award is sponsored annually in recognition of exceptional mentorship at the level of graduate instruction. The honour:

  • recognizes the essential role of mentorship in Canadian educational research
  • pays tribute to an individual CSSE faculty member who has provided outstanding support and encouragement for graduate students in education, and
  • involves graduate students in celebrating excellence in faculties of education in Canada

The CCGSE Mentorship Award is presented annually at the General Meeting of CSSE, during the Congress of the Canadian Federation of the Humanities and Social Sciences.


Recognition at the CSSE Annual General Meeting and a one year paid membership to CSSE.


Evidence in recognition of exceptional graduate student mentoring may include, but is not limited to:

  1. Encouraging contributions to the knowledge base of graduate students.
  2. Providing opportunities for graduate students’ professional growth as teachers and researchers.
  3. Modeling active membership in professional societies and encouraging students to do the same.

Submission Requirements

How to nominate a faculty member for the 2019 CCGSE Mentorship Award:

Designate a nomination coordinator: The nomination coordinator is in charge of the nomination process and will compile and send in the nomination package. They can also write one of the letters of support.

To ensure that the process is complete, the nomination coordinator will:

  1. Nomination Cover Letter: Write a cover letter stating the full name, designation, institutional affiliation, department, address, telephone and email Address of both the nominee and the nomination coordinator.
  2. Nomination Letters of Support: Collect three ‘blind’ nomination letters of support from 2 mentees (e.g. graduate students who the nominee has supervised, taught or worked with) and a colleague, describing in detail why the nominee deserves to be recognized for mentoring graduate students. Nomination letters of support must be no more than two pages in length, typed in Arial 10 pt. font and double spaced. A ‘blind’ nomination letter of support means there is NO mention of the nominee’s name or institutional affiliation within the letter. Nominators should be encouraged to refer to nominees as ‘the nominee’. A guide on the criteria for nomination and requirements to be included in the letters of support can be found here.
  3. Submission: Compile the nomination cover letter and three letters of support as a single package in Word Format (.doc) and email to the Mentorship Award Committee with the heading – Mentorship Award Nomination.

We encourage applications in both English and French.

Past Recipients

2023 – TBA
2022 – Dr. Mindy Carter (McGill University)
2021 – Dr. Debbie Pushor (University of Saskatchewan) & Dr. Chandni Desai (University of Toronto)
2020 – Dr. André Mazawi (OISE/UT)
2018 – Dr. Bonny Norton (The University of British Columbia)
2017 – Dr. Allyson Hadwin (University of Victoria)
2016 – Dr. Antoinette Gagné (University of Toronto)
2015 – Dr. Rachel Heydon (Western University)
2014 – Dr. Bruce M. Shore (McGill University)
2013 – Dr. Donna Chovanec (University of Alberta) and Dr. Benjamin Levin (University of Toronto)
2012 – Dr. Michelle McGinn (Brock University)
2011 – Dr. Nancy Heath (McGill University)
2010 – Dr. Jacqueline Specht (University of Western Ontario)
2009 – Dr. Joseph L. Kincheloe (McGill University)
2008 – Dr. Heesoon Bai (Simon Fraser University)
2007 – Dr. Theresa Rogers (University of British Columbia)
2006 – Dr. Rosemary Foster (University of Alberta)
2005 – Dr. John P. Portelli (OISE/ University of Toronto)
2004 – Dr. Michael Manley-Casimir (Brock University)
2003 – Dr. François Larose (Université de Sherbrooke)
2002 – Dr. Phil Nagy (OISE/UT (Retired))
2001 – Dr. Anne McKeough (University of Calgary)
2000 – Dr. Todd Rogers (University of Alberta)
1999 – Dr. Mathew Zachariah, (University of Calgary (Retired))
1998 – Dr. Philip H. Winne, (Simon Fraser University)


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