Previous Staff and Graduate Assistants

Former Staff

Sara Macdonald

Coordinator (2006-2017)

Sara Macdonald is the former Coordinator of the City Institute and the previous Project Coordinator of the MCRI "Global Suburbanisms" research project. She is currently working on her PhD at Utrecht University in the Netherlands. Sara has her Master's in Environmental Studies from York University and her research interests include urban and regional planning, suburban growth and development and greenbelts. She has been with the City Institute since 2006.

Former Graduate Assistants

Zoi de la Peña

Zoi is a Master's student in the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University, in the Urban Planning stream. Her research focuses on relationships between nature and mental health, the political ecology of urban park creation, accessible and equitable urban design, and the social productions of public space.

Monica Krista De Vera

Monica recently completed her undergrad at the University of Toronto in Environmental Studies and Philosophy. She is currently doing her Masters of Environmental Studies at York University in the Planning stream. Her interests include municipal governance, globalization and urban-regional planning.

Former Student Interns

Maymun Abukar

Undergraduate Student, Geography and Urban Studies
Maymun Abukar is an undergraduate student currently double majoring in Geography and Urban Studies in the Liberal Arts and Professional Studies department at York University. Her work with organizing community facilitations and focus groups, and research regarding planning within public housing in Toronto as well as the city’s taxicab industry demonstrate relevant experience with The City Institute and comprehending the complexity of urban space. Maymun’s research interests are planning within the city regarding public housing for immigrants along with the social and spatial location of newcomers.

Aisha J Jallow

Undergraduate Student, Geography and Urban Studies
Hi! I’m Aisha and am currently in my fourth year of studying geography and urban studies here at York. I am international student from the Gambia and I am very happy to join the team here at City Institute!

Bryan Mark

Undergraduate Student, Screenwriting and Urban Studies
Bryan is a fourth year student double majoring in Screenwriting and Urban Studies. While this might seem like a weird combination, he is enthralled by the city, its different people, and their stories. My research interests include investigating the “low” city and documenting its change.