Our Team



Dr. Basem Gohar

PhD, MSc, C.Psych

Dr. Basem (Bas) Gohar is an assistant professor in the Department of Population Medicine and an adjunct professor in the Psychology Department at the University of Guelph. He is also a faculty researcher at the Centre for Research in Occupational Safety & Health (CROSH). He holds a PhD in Health Services and an MSc in Clinical & Counselling Psychology. Clinically, Bas is a registered clinical psychologist with the College of Psychologists of Ontario, providing clinical services to children, adolescents, and adults. Much of his work with adults focuses on stress management and safe return-to-work.


Dr. Marianne Saragosa

Dr. Saragosa is a registered nurse with a Ph.D. in Health Services Research from the Institute of Health Policy, Management, and Evaluation at the University of Toronto. In 2021/22, Dr. Saragosa was the recipient of a CIHR Health Systems Impact Fellowship (trainee), where she was embedded within a home care organization and conducted a mixed methods study on the care transition experience and readmission rates of home care clients in Ontario.

Since then, Dr. Saragosa has transitioned to a postdoctoral fellowship at the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute at Sinai Health. In this role, she actively engages in program evaluation and care transition research using novel visual research methods. Dr. Saragosa has extensive experience conducting rapid reviews and applied qualitative research in care transitions, young carers, and dementia care. As an emerging early career researcher, Dr. Saragosa is interested in being a connector by building quality relationships and sharing knowledge, ideas, and connections. 


Liam Ishaky

BSc. (Hons), MPH candidate 2023

Liam began his journey in academia at the University of Guelph doing his bachelor’s degree in Bio-Medical Science. After the completion of his bachelor’s, Liam went on to work in an emergency department at height of the Covid-19 pandemic, where he saw the immense level of burnout his colleagues were experiencing. This ultimately led Liam back to the University of Guelph for this Master’s of Public Health, where he currently does research examining the mental health of pharmacists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and medical laboratory technologists as a part of the Gohar lab group.

Outside of academics, Liam is a supervisor going into his fourth year on the University of Guelph First Response Team, an organization that works in conjunction with the campus safety office to respond to medical and mental health emergencies across our campus. In his free time, Liam enjoys spending time with friends and family, playing basketball, being in nature and travelling.

Ayesha Khan

HBSc., MSc Candidate

Ayesha previously graduated from the University of Toronto with an Honours Bachelors of Science (HBSc) in the fields of Psychology and Biology in 2022. She took these two majors because she felt they strongly complimented each other and surely, the big picture came to view at the end of her degree. Throughout her degree, Ayesha was promoted to an Infection Control Supervisor at two hospital sites across the William Osler Health Care System where she saw the direct effects of COVID-19 on patients, visitors, health care staff and their resources. Still working in such environments, she decided to continue her education and begin her masters in Population Medicine in hopes to learn and research more in population health.

Patricia Nicole Dignos

HBSc., MSc Candidate

Patricia graduated from the University of Toronto where she completed an Honours Bachelor of Science with a double major in Biology for Health Science and Psychology and a minor in Anthropology. With an interest in healthcare, Patricia volunteered and worked in a variety of healthcare settings where she developed a newfound interest in the field of public health and epidemiology. This led her to pursue a Master of Science in Population Medicine at the University of Guelph.

For the last number of years volunteering and working at local hospitals, she has witnessed the significant challenges that healthcare workers face. As such, she is interested in researching the effects of occupational stress on mental health and the psychosocial risk factors associated with adverse health outcomes to promote mental well-being and ensure resilience in healthcare professionals. 

Katy Oada


Katy Oada completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Guelph with a Bachelor of Science in Human Kinetics. At the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Katy worked at the University of Guelph mass vaccination clinic. She witnessed firsthand the stress heath care workers endured during this public health crisis. Her elective studies and work experiences have now led her to pursue a Masters of Science in Population Medicine focused on Public Health. As part of the Gohar lab team, Katy will be looking at occupational health and workplace mental well-being of health care workers. 


Frances Serrano

Frances Serrano is a research assistant working at the Gohar Lab where she is responsible for organizing and planning research projects. Frances has graduated from the University of Guelph with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a minor in Family & Child studies. Her research interests are related to I/O psychology and Clinical Psychology, specifically looking at mental health and well-being in the workplace. She plans to further her education and pursue a career as a Clinical Psychologist working with children and young adults.


Michael Gardiner-Davis

Michael is a 4th-year student at the University of Guelph, completing his BSc. (Hons) in Biomedical Sciences with a minor in Neuroscience. He joined the Gohar Lab as a research assistant where he was primarily responsible for coordinating and transcribing focus groups on a CIHR-funded research project investigating the mental health and resiliency of key Canadian health professionals amidst the COVID-19 pandemic; he continues to volunteer with the lab as he finishes his degree. Michael is also responsible for the content, tech support and upkeep of the lab website, ugrohw.ca.

Thomas Habib

Thomas is a third-year Bio-Medical Science student at the University of Guelph. He joins Dr. Gohar and his team in their research regarding moral injury in the veterinary domain. His roles include data extraction and literature review. After he completes his BSc., he aspires to further his education in the medical field. Outside of academics, Thomas is a responder with the University of Guelph First Response Team, attending to medical emergencies on campus. He also enjoys playing soccer and discovering new music.

Celine Said

Celine is a third-year Animal Biology Student at the University of Guelph. She works with Dr. Basem Gohar and his team on research in moral Injury in the veterinary field. As a part of the team, her contributions are literature review and extraction. Celine aspires to work in the veterinary field, specifically in clinical research. She believes that research in moral injury within the veterinary field is essential to creating a safe and sustainable work environment. Beyond her interest in clinical research, she enjoys volunteering with sheep and cattle and working in veterinary clinics. When she is not working or volunteering she enjoys running, reading, crocheting and spending time with family and friends!


Dr. Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia

OT Reg. (Ont.), PhD, FRSA

Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia, PhD, is an assistant professor at the University of Toronto in the Department of Occupational Therapy and Occupational Science, where he also holds the inaugural Emily Geldsaler Grant Early Career Professorship in Workplace Mental Health. Through an occupational lens, his research program is a systematic study of occupations in the areas of work disability prevention, return to work, and disability management. This approach is designed to produce results directly applicable to identify and assess risk and to develop interventions for preventing or improving high-risk behaviours in the workplace. Dr. Nowrouzi-Kia’s work is motivated by efforts in the field of work disability prevention that extends beyond the efforts to prevent or cure diseases from a purely physical perspective, towards more holistic approaches.


Myuri Sivanthan (nee Manogaran), PhD, Post-doctoral fellow (2023)

Zoha Zahoor, MSc in Population Medicine (2022)