Testimonial - Charissa Weir, PhD graduate of the Department of Criminology

Posted on Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Charissa Weir

What made you choose the criminology program at uOttawa?

I first came to the University of Ottawa to pursue my master’s in criminology. I chose to come to uOttawa because the program had an excellent reputation for critical scholarship and social justice. I specifically came to uOttawa to work with Dr. Jennifer Kilty, whose work I had read during my undergraduate degree. In fact, reading some of her feminist work on the criminal justice system was part of what led me to pursue criminology in the first place.

What made you want to pursue your PhD at this university?

While pursuing my master’s at uOttawa, I met an inspiring group of scholars who encouraged and challenged me. It was the positive experience I had during my master’s that led me to stay at uOttawa for my PhD.

What did you like most about the criminology program and what was your favourite part about studying here?

My favourite part about studying at uOttawa and the uOttawa criminology program was the support I received from professors throughout my entire journey. For instance, early in my doctorate program, I experienced uncertainty about my academic and career path. Several professors in my department took time to talk about their experiences, lend a listening ear, and offer advice. They showed an interest and concern in me as a person, not just as a student or scholar. It’s relationships like these that helped make uOttawa a great place for me to pursue graduate studies.

What are your impressions about the university and the city? 

I have loved living in Ottawa—and have decided to stay here even after graduating. Doing graduate studies at uOttawa means you can go sit in on Supreme Court decisions or parliamentary meetings open to the public. These are the kinds of experiences that I found particularly unique and valuable during my studies.

What will you remember the most about your experience as a student at uOttawa?

The thing I will remember the most about my experience at uOttawa is the amazing people that I met—people who are not only skilled and insightful researchers, but also incredibly passionate.


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