This week we’re turning the microphone around and putting the spotlight on IPHRC Research Assistant Jeanelle Mandes. Jeanelle writes the majority of the stories posted on the website and social media pages. This time, IPHRC Associate Director Cassandra Wajuntah sat down and asked Jeanelle the questions.  

jeanelle bio pic.jpg

Jeanelle is from Beardy’s and Okemasis First Nation in Treaty 6 territory. She is in her final year at the School of Journalism. She has received a Certificate in Intercultural Leadership, a Certificate in Indian Communication Arts and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Indigenous Studies from the First Nations University of Canada. Jeanelle hopes to work at a communications position after convocation in Spring 2015. In a few years time, she plans to return to school to obtain a Master’s degree in Journalism. In her spare time, she likes to spend time with her 5-year-old daughter Sharlize. Her daughter was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) two years ago and since then; Jeanelle has been involved in the autism community. She had organized Regina’s first, “Light It Up Blue” autism awareness annual event in April 2013 and continued the following year. 

What are you studying?

I’m in my final year at the School of Journalism here at the University of Regina. I will be graduating in the upcoming Spring with a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism. 

What is your role at IPHRC?

I’m a Research Assistant – Knowledge Translation & Communications. I do a lot of the story writing for the website and social media pages. I work under Associate Director, Cassandra Wajuntah and Director, Dr. Jo-Ann Episkenew. 

What are you learning in your time at IPHRC?

I’m learning a lot of great writing skills, I'm learning how to write work plans to stay on tasks, monitoring the traffic on the website and social media sites. With the traffic data, I've learned how to compile a Social Media report. Also, I have learned how to manage a variety of websites through updating the content. The work my colleagues do is very interesting because it is benefitting the communities they serve. I work along with very driven and educated women who want to better First Nation communities through their hard work and research. Before coming on board with IPHRC, I had no idea what Knowledge Translation was until it was described to me.  I’m learning each day through the different stories I write and post.

What are your career goals?

After graduation, I would like to find a job within communications and with hopes of returning to obtain a Master’s Degree in Journalism and someday teach in a university setting. My boss, Dr. Jo-Ann Episkenew, had come through a lot in her educational path and she sets an example that anyone can achieve anything if you continue to push yourself through life’s obstacles and challenges. Perhaps one day, I’ll become a researcher too.

Anything else you would like to add?

I’ve worked many office jobs in the past but since working at IPHRC, this has been the most interesting job I’ve ever had. The work hours are flexible; the office atmosphere is so fun and welcoming. All the other employees are great to converse with. 

For more information about Jeanelle's work at IPHRC, please contact her directly at: 

Jeanelle Mandes
Research Assistant - Knowledge Translation & Communications
(306) 337-2437