Academic Dons and Tutors

Academic Dons are graduate students or professional faculty students who live in residence and are available for academic counselling and tutoring for all Trinity College students, resident and non-resident. The Dons are selected so that their fields of expertise reflect the studies of students within the College. If you have a question or would like to make an appointment for academic counselling or tutoring, please contact any of the dons by using the contact information below.

We also have one non-resident Academic Tutor for Trinity students this year. For the contact information, please see below (following the list of Academic Dons).

2014-2015 Academic Dons

Mark Barszczyk - Life Sciences:

I look forward to meeting you all this year as one of your life science dons! I’m currently completing a Master’s of Science in Pathobiology where my research focuses on developing prognostic markers and treatment for pediatric brain cancer. As an undergraduate in the Pathobiology program, I have taken many of the courses you may be taking, and I am more than happy to tutor you. When I’m not in the lab I enjoy working out at Hart House and I am always looking for new tennis partners!


Sude Beltan - Comparative Politics:

Hello again Trinity! I am your Don for Student Life and Comparative Politics. I am a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Political Science. My specialization is comparative politics and my research focuses on the relationship between local governance structures and democracy in Turkey. I am originally from Istanbul and I speak Turkish. Besides student life activities at Trinity, I will hold office hours every week so you can feel free to drop in. I look forward to meeting you all and wish you a great year.

Starting  October 11th, I will be in Larkin 334 from 9am - 11am every Friday to help with any problems you may have.  If you have class or are busy during those hours, please email me to set up an individual appointment!


Dave DeMarco - Physics + Math:

Hello! This is my second year as one of the physics and mathematics dons at Trinity. I'm currently working on my Ph.D. in experimental particle physics on an experiment called ATLAS at the Large Hadron Collider. I'm happy to discuss physics research and to help out with any academic questions related to math or physics, or just life as a student in general. Don't hesitate to get in touch with me or any of the Trin Dons since our job is to help make this year at Trinity a happy and successful one!


Daniel Dimitrakopoulos - Chemistry:

I am excited to be starting my first year as an academic don at Trinity, and my first year as a student at the Michener Institute for Applied Health Sciences in their Diagnostic Cytology program. Diagnostic Cytology refers to the study of precancerous cell cultures, playing a crucial role in the diagnostic process of several different forms of cancer. I just recently graduated from Brock University with an Honours Bachelor of Science in Medical Sciences, so I am incredibly thrilled to be putting what I've learned to good use in the coming year. Here at Trinity, I will be the academic don for Chemistry. Don't be afraid to say hello! I absolutely cannot wait to meet all of you and get the ball rolling on what I know will be an amazing year at Trinity College!


Samantha Dzikewicz - International Student Support:

I am excited to be joining the Trinity community as the International Student Support Don. I completed my Bachelor's degree in English and Religion & Culture at Wilfrid Laurier University, after which I pursued a career in Student Affairs and Residence Life for a year at the University of Waterloo. My love of learning and desire to pursue a career as either a Teacher of Student Affairs professional brought me back to the University of Toronto, where I will be attending OISE to obtain my Bachelor of Education, focusing on teaching English. Some things I enjoy are both playing and coaching lacrosse, learning new things (recently guitar and squash), and reading, watching movies, and spending time with my family.


Ian Garner - Political Science:

Hi! I'm the Political Science don at Trinity this year. I'm a third year Ph.D. student in the Department of Russian, where I am researching the interrelation of war, culture and government in the late Soviet and post-Soviet periods. I am a native Briton, so when I manage to escape the library you might find me playing cricket (badly) or drinking tea (well). Feel free to drop by during office hours or email me for a consultation for an help you need with politics and international relations topics.

Starting October 9th, I will be in Larkin 334 from 2pm - 4pm every Wednesday to help with any problems you may have.  If you have class or are busy during those hours, please email me to set up an individual appointment!

Chris Pugh - Literary Studies:

This is my third year at Trinity, and my fourth year as a PhD Student in English. My primary research interests are medieval devotional texts and theories of time and the self. As the Literary Studies Don, I look forward to helping you navigate the world of texts. I also love film, comics, and cooking. You can often find me in the 3rd Kirkwood kitchen baking cookies or in Stedman with a good book. Stop by and say hello!



Jaspreet Sahota - Physics + Math:

I am pursing a Ph.D. in theoretical quantum physics and my current research interests are relevant to the quantum information sciences, especially quantum computing. Particularly, I am interested in the efficient reconstruction of quantum states via cleverly selected sets of measurements. I look forward to discussing any issues that may arise in your physics and/or mathematics studies, or we can have a general philosophical discussion. I always welcome any inquiries from curious students. Besides studying and teaching physics, I enjoy staying active by regularly weight training and playing basketball. Maybe you will join me for some pickup basketball at Hart House. I am very excited to meet you all.


Igor Shoikhedbrod - Roy McMurtry Community Outreach Don:

After graduating from Trinity College with a Bachelor’s degree in Ethics, Society, and Law, Political Science, and Philosophy, I decided to pursue my interest in politics at the Ph.D. level. One of the highlights of my undergraduate years was leading a student club that promoted awareness of, and responses to, pressing social issues by engaging and being engaged by the community. We have a number of exciting outreach and social justice-oriented events planned this year, including a reading group, community-building projects around the city, and activities with the TCVS. Feel free to contact me if you are interested in community outreach or seeking advice on starting your own initiatives. We will try to bring your ideas to fruition. I am also an avid soccer player. Join me on the Trinity backfield for weekly pickup games.

Ljiljana Stanic - Philosophy:

Welcome (back) to Trinity! I have a graduate degree in philosophy and focus on ancient and medieval philosophy and contemporary epistemology, with a smattering of 20th century continental as well. That said, I’m more than happy to discuss any and every variety of philosophy. I’m also available to discuss graduate school, law school (which I’m in at the moment), academics and general life concerns. In my spare time, I enjoy swimming, watching obscure films, and pondering ookpiks.


Ariel Vezina - Chemistry & Biology:

My name is Ariel and I am your Chemistry and Biology academic don. This is my first year at Trinity and I look forward to meeting you all! I have a BSc with a major in Biology and a minor in Interdisciplinary Life Sciences, and I am about to embark on a two-year Master of Teaching program at OISE (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education). I would be happy to help you with any questions you may have about your classes, the post-grad application process or about student life in general. In my free time, I enjoy reading, swimming and baking! I am also an avid cyclist and I am looking forward to exploring new neighbourhoods in Toronto this year. I love meeting new people, so feel free to say hi if you see me on campus. Have a great year!


Payam Zarin - Life Sciences:

I’m a Ph.D. candidate in the department of immunology and one of your life sciences dons this year. My laboratory work at Sunnybrook Research Institute focuses on the development and functional programming of T-lymphocyte subsets as instructed by environmental cues. A bit earlier in my life, I majored in Human Biology and Cell Systems Biology at U of T, preferring a heavier load of molecular and cellular biology courses within the two programs. I look forward to discussing your assignments, labs, and general enquires related to various Life Sci courses. I’d be happy to talk about summer research and post graduate opportunities. I’m also up for soccer (footie), volleyball, and movies!


Maripier Isabelle - Economics:

Economics is a fascinating discipline, but if it turns out to be challenging at any point during this academic year, I will be more than happy to help you deal with it! Having completed a Masters' Degree in Economics at Laval University in Québec City, I am now a Ph.D. student at the the Department of Economics at the University of Toronto. I am specializing in labour economics and my research focuses on how social interactions impact on individuals' economics decisions, and I am looking forward to helping you with any question you may have regarding economics in general! Do not hesitate to book an appointment in advance by email. Looking forward to meeting you and to helping you make this academic year a successful one!


Tina Park - Modern History Tutor:

I am a Ph.D candidate in the History department at U of T, specializing in Canadian-Korean relations. I am also a graduate of Trinity collge (0T9) in International Relations. Feel free to see me for your academic needs as well as extra-curricular opportunities, scholarships, etc. My office is at Larkin 334 and appointments can be booked through