The Mobility Network at the University of Toronto Mississauga is thrilled to introduce the recipients of the 2023-2024 Graduate Research Awards. Kerstyn Lutz, Scarlett Rakowska, Rhonda Solomon, and Leila Denise Uy will conduct mobilities research that serve people’s well-being, the planet’s future, and the potential of our growing cities to flourish equitably, sustainably and productively.
Read about these award-winning students and their research projects below:
Kerstyn Lutz is a Ph.D. candidate at UTM in the Department of Geography, Geomatics and Environment, supervised by Professor Matthew Adams. Her research interests broadly focus on examining built environment exposures, as well as their impact on health and equity.
Kerstyn's research for the Mobility Network aims to identify populations residing in built environments that do not support active school travel (AST), including walking and wheeling to and from school. This pivotal work will empower the strategic targeting of AST interventions to those most in need, ensuring an equitable and impactful approach to enhancing mobility.
Scarlett Rakowska is a Ph.D. student supervised by Professor Matthew Adams in the Department of Geography, Geomatics and Environment at UTM. She completed her undergraduate and Masters degree within the department. Her research project for the Mobility Network focuses on associating health diseases with exposure (e.g., air pollution and traffic) and accessibility (e.g., park space and infrastructure) in Toronto neighbourhoods. Her research will use geographic information systems (GIS) and remote sensing to conduct geospatial statistical analyses. She will also create interactive public maps displaying the results to benefit residents.
Rakowska's research interests include urban health, greenness, geospatial analysis, and health diseases.
Rhonda Solomon is a PhD candidate supervised by Professor Ron Buliung in the Department of Geography, Geomatics and Environment and UTM. Her research project for the Mobility Network centres on the provision of equitable transit access across diverse disability groups.
Solomon’s research interests are ableist design and public infrastructure, with a specific focus on public toilet provision for children with disabilities.
Leila Uy is an M.Sc. student supervised by Professor Jue Wang in the Department of Geography, Geomatics and Environment at UTM. Her research project for the Mobility Network focuses on human mobility after natural disasters in the context of socioeconomic factors.
Uy's research interests include exploring the effect of climate change on human mobility, animal welfare, and civil infrastructures.