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 Stepaniuk,Jeffray

​Senior Instructor
Natural Resources Management Technology
204.627.8529 Ext. 3
jstepaniuk@ucn.ca

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Profile
As a graduate of: 1) the University of Winnipeg (Bachelor of Science Honours - Biology and Environmental Studies); 2) the University of Manitoba (Masters of Science – Heavy Metal eco-physiology); 3) Red River College (Certificate of Adult Education); 4) The Banff Centre for Management Excellence (Environmental Dispute Resolution/Leading and Managing for Results /Leveraging Creative Capacity in Business Innovation/Leading Strategically); 5) the University of Central Michigan (Masters of Education, Curriculum Design and Educational Administration); 6) Oxford University, London England (Certificate of Participatory Video for Social Change); and 7) the Natural Resources Institute (NRI) University of Manitoba Inter-disciplinary Ph.D. Program (Dissertation: Applying Modified Participatory Video and Popular Education to Improve Environmental Science Learning in Northern Manitoba) … a plethora of academic, professional and managerial exposure has provided Dr. Jeffray Stepaniuk contextual opportunities for local engagement with special interest groups, visible minorities, Aboriginal and Indigenous cultures, persons with disabilities, funding agencies, private industry, government, and postsecondary educational theorists.   

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Dr. Stepaniuk’s experience emphasizes andragogical strengths and strategies related to northern understandings in responsive environmental science education for the situated ‘communiversity’ landscape with a unique ability to develop adult programming related directly to local student narratives.  Knowledge of place-conscious systems and a commitment to education for sustainable preservation in the context of Manitoba’s wild spaces brings expertise in regional lesson design, inquiry-based active research, graduate advising and networking with community and world to develop a ‘project approach’ that resonates with an ethical imperative to be responsive and just.

Presentations related to rural infrastructure, rural renewal, eco-tourism, resources extraction and values-based education to the House of Commons Standing Committee, the Canadian Psychology Association, Monsanto, the Wildlife Society, Enviro-Quest Research, the Manitoba Wildlife Federation, the Manitoba Habitat Foundation and Manitoba Hydro help the University College of the North (UCN) and its Natural Resources Management Technology students to say hello to the Province.
 
Dr. Stepaniuk is a honoris causa recipient of a distinguished Cretaceous menagerie and Trivedi Effect contributor to the scientology of SETH and EVE.  Transformational knowledge regarding Xiphactinus audax shared through psychological, convictional and behavioral teachings has been an enduring aspiration, driving these favored young learners to make their lives more humane and to direct their world to this end.
 
Jeff is also the creator of the winning painting in the 1996 Provincial Stamp and Print Competition entitled “Monarch of the Marshland”.  In 1997, the Licensing Branch of Manitoba Natural Resources used 268,000 of Jeff’s stamps to validate provincial sport and commercial fishing licenses generating over $350,000 for watershed and habitat enhancement in the province of Manitoba.
 
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As past President and Accrediting Chairman of the North American Wildlife Technology Association (NAWTA), responsibilities have included patriotically coordinating and maintaining contact with other appropriate natural resource related organizations, Animal Care Committees and The Wildlife Society.
 
Jeff has been a board Member of The Manitoba Wildlife Federation Habitat Foundation, Endangered Spaces Committee, The Manitoba Habitat Heritage Marsh Committee, a Ducks Unlimited Green Wing Days Educational Representative, the Churchill Northern Studies Committee and Association of Canadian Universities for Northern Studies in the Institute of Arctic Eco-physiology, CEO of Northern Ecolibrium, the Snow Lake Resource Board, Rocky Lake Fisheries Co-management Group, World Wildlife Fund-Sponsor of Mountain Gorillas-Manatee-Polar Bears-Seals-Sea Turtles-Wale Sharks and Cheetah, The Pas Big Brothers and Sisters (Santa Claus), Cadets Selection and Candidate Review Committee Member, Canada Safety Council Certification, Presidential Advisory Committee, Repap Forestry Resource Advisory, publication consultant with Randall Townsend Advertising, Covey Leadership, St. John Ambulance Certification, Manitoba Labor and Immigration WHMIS Training, Watershed Science Centre Class 2 Electro-fishing Instructor Certification, Centro Ecologico Akumal – Green Turtle Preservation and Action in Akumal (transfer agreement for student employment developed for Keewatin Community College graduates in Quintana Roon, Mexico), facilitator of Treaty Lands and Trust with Swampy Cree Opasquia wildlife, fisheries and water resources management, and a Master Measurer of the Safari Club International (SCI).
 
Past employment with the Manitoba Department of Natural Resources, Symbion Consultants, Natural Directions, Fish Futures Incorporated, Enviro-Quest, North South Aquatic Environmental Specialists, Manitoba Hydro Bipole III HVDC Transmission and Ducks’ Unlimited has provided opportunity for raw data interpretation, analysis, documentation and manuscript reporting specified by study protocol and Good Laboratory Practice assurances.  Training of technical staff in safety precautions regarding chemical mobility and degradation profiles in aquatic biomonitoring, fish capture, electro-fishing acquisition of baseline data, Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI), radio-telemetry, hydro-metric measurement, assemblage sampling and enumeration methodologies in all provincial regions assisting in determination of status and dynamics of fish and wildlife populations to forecast-mitigate challenges under review have been accountabilities.
 
As past General Manager of the Manitoba Wildlife Federation-Habitat Foundation, responsibilities included establishing a viable and effective private, charitable corporation to preserve, maintain and manage wildlife habitat lands in the province and to assist in the growth and development of the MWF Habitat Foundation.  Specific duties and responsibilities included daily administration, public relations and MWF affiliate liaison, fund raising and proposal generation, habitat acquisition, reconnaissance and development of a successful quality outdoors publication on behalf of the Foundation – The Outdoor Edge.



 
Teaching
With the perspective that legislation and enforcement have not succeeded in balancing society’s needs for valued wildlife preservation, Dr. Stepaniuk believes a synchronistic outcome depends on an informed public supported by educational resources designed to shape the beliefs, sensitivities and scholastic relationality of negotiated student meaning.  Jeff’s coaching interests are in developing instructional models incorporating environmental science and participatory constructs drawn from the domains of transdisciplinary behavioural psychologies; learning theories applied to alternative lesson delivery methodologies that integrate underlying value creation, motivational drivers, change behaviors, cross cultural liminalities and student notions.
 
Lesson content is supported by interactive learning experiences stimulating emotional and psychological connections with the environment while sharing personal in-comprehensions.  Recent educational research evaluates instructional outcomes in two contexts: 1) didactic (classroom) teaching environments; and 2) situated learning approaches integrating Participatory Video (PV) training exercises.  Outcomes support development of stand-alone instructional modules advancing local-level community action in ecological research and the disruption of racialized perceptions.
 
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Laboratory exercises and curriculum creation in wildlife, fisheries, water resources and biostatistics support secondary and postsecondary learning with the aim to generate class discussion and student development revealing responses to perplexing questions regarding northern Manitoba.  Annual research reports with the UCN Animal Care Committee have included small mammal density and diversity, walleye age and growth surveys, fecundity analysis, stomach contents research, ungulate browse surveys, annual migratory bird banding demonstration (Master Bird Bander – Permit Number 10522), fecal pellet count exercises and gallinaceous line transect methods (1995 to present) providing vital local mnemonics.
 
As a past President and Accrediting Chairman with The North American Wildlife Technology Association (NAWTA International – 1999-2006), Dr. Stepaniuk helped to guarantee relevant training was reviewed and validated through independent outside agencies assuring UCN Natural Resources Management Technology (NRMT) programs reflected current industry standard while providing a forum for young environmentalists.
 
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Research
Dr. Jeffray Stepaniuk is particularly interested in the andragogy of place, equity in education, alternative methodologies and responsive research methods that open the possibility of noticeable engagement and personal transformation. Above all, research must inform value practices which organize knowledge and meaning encouraging reflection between theoretical aspects of learning and the praxis of everyday life.
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As academic performance is a challenge confronting many postsecondary students and increased attrition rates nation-wide have been slow to change, effective ‘non-traditional’ approaches to environmental learning and evaluation are undeniably important.  As such, there is relevance in exploring experiential context and the implications for northern student-centred learning models that improve awareness and ‘academic performance’ especially in the context of ongoing threats to both freshwater and the preservation of traditional cultural expression in northern Manitoba. 
 
By helping to identify non-conventional strategies for improvement in environmental education, Dr. Stepaniuk has confidence in the promotion of educational opportunities that increase academic performance presented through situated learning outlooks and participatory methods relating to environmental mindfulness in this region. 
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Local research has included: 1) the effects of flooding on Wild Rice (Zizania aquatica) stands in Manitoba during normal growing seasons to determine total soluble protein and carbohydrate levels and fluctuations correlated inversely with water temperature and level; and 2) survey of heavy metals – cadmium, copper and lead - in a 30 kilometer stretch of the Nelson River System. Atomic absorption spectrophotometry and a standard additions method showed Interspecific differences were found and below ground anatomies tended to show higher values than above ground portions.  Metal per unit dry weight of muscle tissue decreased with increasing size and age of fish, however, levels for many internal organs were greater than in muscle. 
 
A contemporary research concern in northern Manitoba includes habitat fragmentation and the alteration of environments essential for small mammals (<30g) which in turn support forest sustainability, fur production economies and northern living cultures.  Investigating Cricetidae and Soricidae family abundance for almost two decades permits the examination of student and community assumptions and perceptions as to how well these small mammals are using the environments available.  Despite some small sample sizes, Dr. Stepaniuk believes these findings not only indicate analyses are statistically significant, but are now open to paradigm change local community concern (i.e., Manitoba Fur Program Compensation).   

Internationally, and to assess the impact of tourism on Indigenous populations in north-central Namibia, a modified participatory video technique and the most significant change theory were used with game lodge employees recruited from Caprivi Strip Wilderness Lodges near Etosha National Park and an indigenous Himba community along the Kuene River - Aboriginal souls and areas targeted for a major hydroelectric project. Research demonstrated the effectiveness of a combined participatory approach allowing isolated and technically naïve persons to share unscripted stories regarding impact of resettlement. Implications drawn were later related to provincial community relocation and curriculum design in the environmental sciences.
 
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From Reykjavik to the culture of Ektafiskur Ehf and Akureyri Iceland, prospective 2019 NRMT Program enrollees and Dr. Stepaniuk returned home open-minded.  Diverse experiences included Grabrok Crater, Gooafoss, Gulifoss and Barnafoss Falls, the Hvita River, Myvatn, Nammafjall, Pingvellir National Park, University lectures on ocean-biodiversity and climate change, Fridheimar Farm producing 20% of Iceland’s tomatoes close to the Arctic Circle, Gauksmyri Horse Stables, Siglufjordur Herring Museum, Krysuvik, Geysir and Stokkur, life-sized models of whales and the Blue Lagoon.
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