Next Up Saskatoon 2013-2014

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Meet the current Next Up Saskatoon Year 4 group (2013-2014)!


Adam Hering sask -AdamHering

Adam is a rock-climbing, Judaism-influenced, socially and environmentally conscious veterinarian currently studying disease in northern Canada’s bison population through the University of Saskatchewan. Adam has always appreciated animals and nature, adventuring outdoors using many modes. He sees his wildlife-focused vet career as a means to influence the environment on a large scale.

After growing up in Edmonton with his parents, sisters and brother, Adam spent a year in Israel volunteering and living in a kibbutz when he was seventeen. He studied in Calgary, where he was involved in environmental and feminist groups on campus. Adam’s time in Tanzania doing veterinarian and development-related work with the Maasai people has also influenced his career and activism.

Adam’s family is important to him; he is an uncle to three nieces and two nephews! His significant other lives in Calgary, and his charming canine, Scout, lives in Saskatoon with Adam.

Adam’s FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) keeps him active enough to be tired, but his involvement is rewarding. In conversations, Adam’s balance is striking. He has a unique ability to see multiple sides of an issue, and to cooperate with those who hold views contrary to his own in a respectful way.

Alyssa Scott

Alyssa Scott grew up in Regina with her parents and older brother. Near the end of high school she became deeply interested in climate change and environmental issues. After considering several universities, she moved to Saskatoon to pursue environmental studies. At the same time, she got involved with social justice groups on campus; taking on leadership roles with WUSC and Amnesty. Through WUSC, she has helped sponsor many international refugees to come study at the U of S. Through Amnesty, she has held innumerable letter writing campaigns and raised awareness about how resource extraction is linked to human rights abuses around the world.

Today, Alyssa is near to finishing her Environment & Society degree and assisting with research on environmental governance and water security. She plans to get her masters in environmental policy, and continue exploring the intersection of environmental and social issues throughout her life.



Arisha Nazir

When it comes to learning new things, Arisha Nazir is your gal! Arisha was raised in a house of over 10 people. Some family values are self-growth, family and education. Arisha believes that in order to help others, she must be best she can. Arisha also believes in equal education for all, especially for youth. Loving kids and their energy, Arisha knows how important it is for younger people to have an education. Passed down from generations, education definitely runs in her family.

Arisha loves to volunteer. Her most recent experience was participating in Folk Fest. She was a Youth Ambassador for Pakistan. Arisha also enjoys reading. Her favorite book is “Tiger Hills”. She enjoys the imagery which is located in Southern India, that describes beautiful landscapes, which inspires Arisha to travel and explore the world. Arisha knows that she will continue to be enthusiastic towards learning new things.

Arisha will continue to be brave and challenge herself, while maintaining her positive, bubbly personality that will help her grow into tomorrows strong leader. A life long goal in her own words is to leave the world in a better place then how she found it.

Erica Moir Screen Shot 2014-01-13 at 11.35.06 PM

Erica Moir lives a busy life as a registered nurse at Wadena Hospital and as a home and community care nurse working with on Fishing Lake First Nation. A northerner originally from La Ronge, Erica grew up alongside friends and family who taught her the importance of listening and being open to the richness of diversity. As a nurse, Erica works on issues of community health empowerment and health education. Her co-workers and clients inspire her daily and teach her about resilience and the power of humour. Erica has travelled the world (to Mexico, Cuba, New Zealand, China, and all over Europe) and soaks up opportunities to learn about cultures and the outdoors. Her interest in cultures is reflected in her enthusiasm for listening to Cuban radio stations over her shortwave radio and her involvement with her own Christian faith tradition (as well as learning about others). Her love of nature, which was cemented when she was growing up amidst abundant trees and lakes in Northern Saskatchewan, has sparked her interest in photography. In the summer, Erica is an avid gardener (with a soft spot for peas) and in the winter, she plays hockey and sometimes curls. In all seasons, Erica is married to her husband Chad.


Halena Seiferling Screen Shot 2014-01-13 at 11.34.10 PM

Halena Seiferling is originally from Regina but is now residing in Saskatoon with her partner Jon. Halena entered university directly after graduating from high school in 2008 with the intentions of going into psychology. However, after a class in Sociology a new path was drawn. Having the opportunity to travel with school Halena has spent time in both Cuba and Norway. In Cuba she did an internship in Permaculture and received a certificate in Permaculture design. Spending a semester in Norway she focused her time in learning about Scandinavian Politics. Finishing university this past June she left with two degrees in International Development and Sociology. After her completion she is now deciding on what kind of work she would like to focus her energy in while continually staying busy and active in her new community.

Hilary Gough 

Hilary Gough was born and raised in Saskatoon along with her identical twin sister and two older siblings.

Hilary studied physical anthropology at the University of Saskatchewan and is now completing her Master’s degree, which looks into migration of medieval peoples in Denmark by studying their dental chemistry.

Speaking of migration, Hilary loves biking, and is currently part of the group Saskatoon Cycles which is advocating for better bike lanes and support for cycling. She is also very interested in women’s rights issues, and is currently the Secretary for the Saskatchewan chapter of the Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women. Other hobbies include knitting, spending time with her family, and making fake taxidermy (and you should ask her about this).

Hilary is excited to learn from others in the Next Up program about what their passions are in seeking social justice, and she hopes to learn more about what she is passionate about as well.




Julie Maxwell 

Julie Maxwell’s roots are firmly planted in the farm on which she grew up. It has produced in her a passion for guerilla gardening, permaculture and fruit forestry as well as well as inspired her to work at the Floating Gardens in Osler, SK.When questioned on her obsessive commitment to plants and plant-like things Julie replied “It’s true. It’s all I do.”

When Julie leaves tending to her plants she is involved with Amnesty International and the SPIRG campaign on campus, often can be found being an aficionado of soup or making music, as well as likely confused about her general location. Naturally her aspirations stem from her fixation as Julie hopes to make a career in horticulture. But for now Julie sees herself turning a new leaf while being a part of Next Up.

Kassandra Rea-Cram

As an artist, an animal lover, and an all ‘round activist powerhouse, Kassandra Rea-Cam, (or Kas for short) knows how to walk the walk. Kas has lived in Saskatchewan all her life. Raised as an only child in a single parent household, Kas and her mom are the best of friends. Luckily, she’s good at bridging gaps and has also reconnected with her father in Bolivia. Kas is working towards a bachelor’s degree in fine arts, studying art and art history, and finds passion in many modalities. From acrylics, to sculpting, to drum circles, she’s rarely out of her element.

Kas effectively integrates her artsy side with her activist side. She’s a member of the art community both on campus through VASU (visual arts students union) as well as in the community at large through WAM (We Are Many), a youth run arts and environmental organization. Some of the projects she’s been involved in are coordinating hydration stations at events to cut down on disposable water bottle waste.

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is important to Kas, and she keeps herself active and balanced physically and emotionally by regularly practicing yoga and eating a healthy vegan diet. She also works part time at Gail Adam’s school of art in Saskatoon but dreams of one day moving to Vancouver to curate an art gallery there.

Leah Arcand

Leah was born and raised in Saskatoon, SK Treaty 6 Territory, and has also lived in Muskeg Lake Cree Nation, Rosthern, SK, and on the Coast Salish Traditional Territory, aka Victoria, BC.

In Leah’s journey, she has been drawn to stand up for the rights of children/youth, the environment, Indigenous peoples, and women. For the past several years Leah has been working on environmental and Indigenous issues through the Idle No More movement. In addition to her work with Idle No More, Leah is also a member of Kimiwan zine, a quarterly publication based in Saskatoon that showcases words and art from emerging and established First nations, Metis, and Inuit writers and artists.

Leah is in her final year of a degree in education at the U of S in ITEP (Indian Teachers Education Program) and is currently working at a high school for her practicum. Although Leah is unsure where exactly her path will take her, she hopes to continue working with youth and working in her community to effect change on the issues that are important to her.




Lisa Howse

Lisa Howse grew up on a littleorganic farm near Porcupine Plain, SK with her parents, her two older sisters, and a cat named Smokey. In her grade eight year, she moved to Saskatoon to attend high school at Bedford Road Collegiate. There, one of her most memorable classes was Global Citizenship 30, taught by local activist Sheelah McLean.

Upon graduating, Lisa began studying international development at the University of Saskatchewan in hopes of gaining a greater understanding of poverty and its systemic causes. While completing her degree, she volunteered extensively with the OXFAM campus club, and today continues to support the group through fundraising and public awareness initiatives.

She is an avid cook, cycler, PC gamer, writer and reader of fantasy fiction, painter, gardener and permaculture enthusiast.




Lisa May

Hailing from Martensville, Lisa May wasted no time in moving to Saskatoon following graduation; she spent her first three years in the city as a piercer with some great piercings and tattoos to show for it. Her adventures took her on a month long solo trip to Nicaragua in 2012 – she highly recommends renting a hammock at a tree fort hostel she visited in the jungle!

Following her passion for learning about alternative and preventative medicine, Lisa May is about to begin a year of training in Acupressure. Lisa loves to surround herself with critical thinkers and to be challenged in a positive way, making Next Up a great chance for her to learn more about her passions and find ways to focus her energy.

Lisa May has three younger sisters and a Yorkshire-Pincher pup “Tricky” Ricky (her #1 love)!


Nick Marlatte

Nick is currently in his last semester of a double honours degree at the U of S, studying Political Studies and Philosophy. He is passionate about the pursuit of truth and hopes to continue on in academics after this degree, considering subjects such as public policy, international development, or even journalism.

Nick is one of those rare people able to balance academic excellence with work, play and community involvement. When he’s not hitting the books, you might find Nick working at his job with Autism Services, playing on his soccer team, or planning his next trip overseas.

Nick is really enjoying Next Up so far, and looks forward to building the relationships he’s already formed with the other cohorts. Being one of only two boys in the group, he’s keen to take on a brotherly role and bring his introspective nature to the group dynamic. We’re lucky to have him in our Next Up family!




Rachel Malena

The petty things in life don’t seem to bother Rachel. To her, it comes down to what matters most: relationships. Friends, family, coworkers, and volunteer colleagues have brought inspiration and meaning to her life. Rachel was born and raised in Saskatoon to a family of 6. While completing a political science degree at the University of Saskatchewan, she developed a special interest in current events and social justice and latter, knowledge translation, universal child care, women’s issues, gay rights and poverty. Someday she hopes to continue her education through a master’s program.

Rachel recently gained employment with Upstream, an organisation focused on prevention of social problems. Her work involves public communication, organising meetings and events, and networking. She describes her work as optimistic, and thrives on the job’s high expectations and demands, as well as her great coworkers and the commitment of volunteers.

In her spare time, Rachel can be found playing soccer, guitar, or singing backup for a folk/rock band or worship group. She has also done vocals for local jazz and hip hop groups. Rachel owns and runs a small photography business with her partner shooting mostly portraiture, and occasionally volunteer work for non profit organisations.


Sharissa Hantke sask Sharissa Hantke

Sharissa ‘Rissy’ Hantke grew up in Kimberly, BC, but has been happily living in Saskatchewan for the past 12 years with her partner Garrett. Rissy is 26 years young and has studied at the U of S to complete her first degree in Biology, and her 2nd degree in Nursing.  She practiced her RN at the Royal University Hospital in the pediatric ward where she is currently working at.  When she is not working at the hospital, she is training Nursing students in core neighborhoods in the city in which she is thoroughly enjoying.

Other than being an excited member of Next-Up, for the past 2 years Rissy has been involved with Kairos; a faith based social justice and environmental group.  She hopes to carry the same energy and passion she has in her activism into the Next-Up program, and build meaningful connections with everyone in the group.  When Rissy is not tackling social and environmental issues, she is out in the Swing dance community as an active member by organizing dance event and fundraisers.





Tanya Andrusieczko Tanya-Snow

Tanya Andrusieczko is a lover of bees and cheese and grammar. This lively lady moved to Saskatoon three years ago from Toronto, lured to Saskatchewan by its prairie vistas and never-ending horizons. Contrary to popular opinion, Tanya likes Saskatchewan winters too. She is a lover of all seasons and the foods that come with them. Last summer, she learned about gardening by volunteering at the Food Bank’s community garden. To Tanya, even a single potato has a story. One cannot simply ask Tanya what her favourite food is, because she’ll just reply, “It’s unfair to food to ask that!” It is this quirky and inquisitive personality Tanya brings to NextUp.

Tanya is a devoted yogi, boxer, cyclist, and walker, and she is already making plans for retirement. In her spare time, Tanya can be found walking her dog Roo and and listening to podcasts. She hopes to one day have her own apiary.