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Meet our Faculty Researchers – Corrie Duchesne

Feb 1, 2024 | Research Centre

Corrie Duchesne Photo

Meet Corrie Duchesne, Canadore’s Science Lab and Biosafety Officer. Corrie's journey at Canadore has been a dynamic blend of educational pursuits, diverse work experiences, and a deep commitment to biosafety and research support. Corrie is a graduate of Canadore’s Biotechnology Program. She began her career as a Biotechnologist before the term "advanced diplomas" came into play. During her placement year, she worked at the molecular biology lab of the University of Guelph. Although she enjoyed her time there, her heart remained in Northern Ontario. She later completed a 3-year BSc. in Biology at Nipissing University in North Bay.

During her professional journey, Corrie worked with the Ontario Clean Water Agency (OCWA) where she gained valuable insights into the water and wastewater industry. As a lab analyst in an environmental lab, she was responsible for processing water, wastewater, and microbiological samples and also earned her Water Quality Analyst certification. Later, she worked as a research assistant for a constructed wetland in Cobalt, which helped her further expand and enhance her skills.

Corrie first became connected with Canadore when she returned to work as a part-time Lab Technician for the Environmental and Biotechnology programs. In 2012, she joined full-time as a Technologist and Biosafety Officer. Her role expanded to meet new federal regulations, resulting in the creation of a comprehensive Biosafety Program. This program enabled the college to have a Containment Level 2 Lab.

Corrie is a passionate advocate of lifelong learning. She pursued additional certifications and completed an Adult Educator Certificate to enhance her knowledge and expertise. She also upgraded her degree to a 4-year BSc in Biology Specialization and earned a Professional Certificate in Public Health from the University of Alberta. Furthermore, she enriched her expertise by obtaining certificates in the Principals and Practices of Biosafety, Laboratory Biosafety, and Blood-borne Pathogens from the University of Toronto. She is a Registered Biosafety Officer (RBSO) from the Canadian Association of Biological Safety (CABS). In recognition of her dedication and expertise, she also serves on the CABS Executive Team.

Corrie derives immense satisfaction from collaborating with skilled colleagues and committed students at Canadore. The diverse range of faculty members enhances the strengths of the department, and watching students actively engage in the scientific process, acquire laboratory skills, and bolster their confidence brings her great delight. Corrie recognizes that learning is a two-way process, and she often acquires as much knowledge from her students as they do from her.

Corrie is highly interested in the potential of Canadore's genomics lab to solve research problems in different industries. Her objective is to encourage research from a one-health perspective, acknowledging the interdependence of humans, animals, plants, and the environment in shaping the overall health of our planet. Corrie is primarily responsible for supporting research projects, conducting risk assessments, and addressing biosafety queries. However, her contribution to the behind-the-scenes aspects plays a vital role in facilitating a robust research environment.

Corrie urges her colleagues to get in touch with the college's research department if they have any ideas, queries, or thoughts. The department's expertise can provide valuable assistance and direction to those interested in exploring research opportunities. For students embarking on the research journey, Corrie highlights “the significance of having patience. Research is a time-consuming process, and making mistakes is a natural part of the learning curve. Success cannot be achieved overnight.” Corrie advises students to seek guidance from mentors, remain open to new experiences, and have faith in their journey.