Diversity flows beneath the waters off the coast of Halifax, Nova Scotia and above the surface in Atlantic Canada. Alexa Goodman (They/Them) and Aaron Judah (He/Him) both with MEOPAR and ocean sciences; know the importance of inclusion and representation within STEM; and they’re making waves.
In Episode 34 of Season 3 Hey, Cis! ‘Diversity Beneath the Deep Blue Sea, Isaac and Cyn are joined by Alexa and Aaron.
Alexa is a true EDIA verb. Inclusion in motion. Simply Good Form Inc. has the pleasure of working with Alexa and MEOPAR over the past several months and their passion for change is infectious. They are a Marine Manager passionate about doing good for our planet and its people by shifting awareness into action, using curiosity, compassion and strong project management to lead the way. They joined the MEOPAR team in May 2021 as Training Program Manager to equip the next generation of marine researchers with the knowledge and tools needed to excel in their careers. Alexa is a scientist, intersectional environmental activist, practising yogi, and a driving force in managing abandoned, lost, and discarded fishing gear, also called ‘ghost gear’.
What is Ghost Gear?… keep reading.
Intersecting STEM, Religion, Sexual Orientation, Ability and ethnicity: beneath the layers
Hailing from Toronto, Canada, Aaron (he/him/his) is a gay, mixed (Indian-Italian-Middle Eastern), bi-religious (Bene Israel Judaism-Roman Catholic) marine ecologist who focuses on the functionality of marine ecosystems under human impacts and global change. If you’ve ever scratched head around intersectionality and the impacts of minority identities with STEM and beyond, come and break it down with Aaron, Alexa, Isaac and Cyn.
Aaron swims amongst the sharks and rays and is currently an Honours student at Dalhousie University, where he is finishing a degree in marine biology, and his thesis, which will be looking at new functional baselines and conservation options for shark and ray communities across the world’s coral reefs.
His research has taken him around the world, from studying wood-falls on the deep-sea floor of the Gulf of Mexico, to tagging sharks and rays in Belize and South Africa. He is also the Ocean’s Lead for Diversity of Nature, a BIPOC-led education and outreach organization, where he focuses on ocean (and shark!) themed programming for youth. Overall, Aaron says he wishes to be an advocate for the future of ocean sustainability, while documenting and exploring biodiversity change in diverse marine systems, such as coral reefs and the deep sea.
They’ve been a Sustainable Oceans Alliance Youth Leader since 2019 and are committed to making waves of change for the betterment of future generations to come.
Play: Let’s get connected!
This month’s Hey, Cis! community connection is all about our identities — but with a fishy, ocean twist! Participate here by sharing one of your salty identities. Do you love beaches and have a favourite, Are you a surfer, clam-digger or tidal-pool-watcher? Share it here:
This Season of Hey, Cis! is proudly supported by TD Bank Group. Thanks to you all for helping us build bridges, foster connection and break down binary-based biases.
To Play our Menti Word Cloud, simply click the pict above. Alternatively:
- Use your smart phone camera
- Hover over the QRC code
- Click the link that appears
- Dive in!
Tune-in to Episode 34 of Hey, Cis! podcast this November to hear all about Alexa’s curious collection of Ghost Gear.
Follow-along with Aaron here:
Google Scholar: Aaron B. Judah
Learn more about MEOPAR’s inclusion capacity building work here.