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Summer Course

Summer 2023

CRS is happy to announce that we will be offering our Summer Course in 2023, from June 5 - 9.

The course will be offered in a hybrid format, with some participants attending in person and some attending remotely.

Canada is a global leader in refugee research, policy making, and in refugee resettlement. Ten to twelve thousand refugees are resettled annually in Canada – this is ten percent of all those who are resettled globally. Our goal at the Centre for Refugee Studies (CRS), one of the largest and most active refugee studies centres in the world, is to assist with building and updating the increasing and changing knowledge needs of refugee scholars and practitioners.

The summer course is an internationally acclaimed, non-credit professional development course that provides an interdisciplinary, interactive and experiential approach to the study of forced migration and refugee issues. It embraces a comparative global approach that exposes participants to the different perspectives of scholars and field-based specialists from Canada and abroad, presents highlights from research and practical work in different regions including North and South America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia, and involves a blend of well-respected academics and practitioners with an excellent national and international track record of research, policy engagement and publications.

The Summer Course provides an interdisciplinary, interactive and experiential approach to the study of forced migration. Through attending lectures and related small group sessions, course participants develop a deepened understanding of the political, economic, social and cultural contexts of forced migration, and the major state and non-state institutions involved in refugee protection and advocacy. Participants will  have an opportunity during the course for structured networking and idea collaboration through panels and small group discussion.

All participants who complete the full course receive a York University Centre for Refugee Studies Summer Course Certificate.

If you would like to be kept updated about CRS, please let us know that you’d like to be added to our listserv by emailing Michele Millard at

Draft Program (March 15, 2023)

Theme: Rethinking Refugee-ness?

Online pre-work: participants should view our "CRS Online Introduction to Refugee Studies" videos below prior to arrival.  In-class assignments/discussions  will be drawn from these videos.


  • Categories & Definitions
  • Overseas Protection: Resettlement & Sponsorship in Canada
  • The Canadian Refugee Determination System
  • International Refugee Law,
  • International Politics of Refugee Protection

Resettlement & Sponsorship in Canada

  • Overseas Protection: Resettlement & Sponsorship in Canada
  • The Canadian Refugee Determination System
  • Migration experiences: Citizenship and non- citizenship
  • Alternative pathways to protection in Canada
  • What refugee mental health tells us about integration and settlement in Canada
  • Gender and age mainstreaming in Canada
  • Determination and Biases in the Canadian refugee system?
  • Resettlement policies and long-term integration

Global Migration Policies and Practices

  • International Refugee Law
  • International Politics of Refugee Protection
  •  Current state of the global compact
  • Refugee law and indigenous policies
  • Indigenous displacement
  • Disasters and environmental displacement (Intersectional analyses)
  • The Growing role of artificial intelligence in migration management
  • Mixed migration flows and irregular migration 

Race, Power and Representation (Panel Discussions)

  • Refugee Led Organizations
  • Racial equity in international migration policy and resettlement
  • Representation in research: Research from the Global South
  • Displacement crisis, in-Canada response: Musing on race and colonialism

Conclusion: Rethinking “refugee-ness”: Definitions, policies and discourses

Abdikadir Bare Abikar

Abdikadir Bare Abikar is a co-founder of the Dadaab Research Association (DRA) in Dadaab refugee camp. He has extensive experience in research and has participated in several research activities, with a focus on education. He has also worked on various research projects related to education in Somalia and currently supports the ABE program in Somalia as part of the Monitoring, Evaluation, Research, and Learning (MERL) department. He is dedicated to improving the lives of refugees in Dadaab through education and research.

Eliza Bateman

Eliza Bateman is the Head of Research at the University of Ottawa Refugee Hub, leading scholarship, policy analysis and research projects on refugee protection: with a focus on resettlement, refugee sponsorship, complementary pathways, and integration. Eliza also leads the Hub’s interdisciplinary research team of research analysts, emerging scholars and students. Prior to joining the Refugee Hub, Eliza worked in senior lawyer roles for the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission (Australia) and Victoria Legal Aid (Australia), where she specialised in human rights and anti-discrimination legal practice. She has also worked in senior policy and legal roles for the Australian government, specialising in immigration and administrative law. Eliza holds a PhD in Law and an LLM from McGill University and degrees in Law and Arts from the Australian National University.

Hilary Evans Cameron

Hilary Evans Cameron is an Assistant Professor at the Lincoln Alexander School of Law in Toronto, Canada. A former litigator, she represented refugee claimants for a decade and holds a doctorate in refugee law from the University of Toronto. Her research largely focuses on credibility assessment in the refugee law context. She is the author of numerous publications, including a book about the law of fact-finding in Canadian refugee status decision-making (Refugee Law’s Fact-finding Crisis: Truth, Risk, and the Wrong Mistake, Cambridge 2018). Her work has been influential internationally and has been included in a leading anthology of “the finest scholarship available” in refugee law from the 1930s to the present (Hathaway 2014).

Christina Clark-Kazak

Christina Clark-Kazak is Associate Professor in the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Ottawa. She has previously served as President of the International Association for the Study of Forced Migration, Editor-in-chief of Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees, and President of the Canadian Association for Refugee and Forced Migration Studies. Prior to joining the University of Ottawa, she worked for York University (2009-2017), Saint Paul University (2007-2008) and the Canadian government (1999-2007). Her research focuses on age discrimination in migration and development policy, young people’s political participation, and interdisciplinary methodologies in forced migration contexts. She holds a Doctorate from Oxford University, a Master’s from Cambridge University and a BA from the University of British Columbia.

Arte Saman Dagane

Arte Saman Dagane a co-founder of the Dadaab Response Association (DRA). completed his Masters-in-Education at York University in Toronto, Canada. He also attained his first degree in Human Geography from the same University. He has been working with DRA as a research coordinator. He is also going to start a new job with DRA as Education Coordinator under a new project funded by Master Card Foundation (MCF) through African Higher Education in Emergencies Network (AHEEN), implementing higher education Dadaab.

Heba Gowayed

Heba Gowayed is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Boston University

Her research, which is global and comparative, examines how low-income people traverse social services, immigration laws, and their associated bureaucracies, while grappling with gender and racial inequalities. Her writing has appeared in academic journals including Gender & Society, Ethnic & Racial Studies, American Behavioral Scientist and Sociological Forum, as well as in public outlets including Slate, Al Jazeera English, The New Humanitarian, and Teen Vogue.

She is author of Refuge, published with Princeton University Press, which explores how states shape the potential of people pursuing refuge within their borders. She is currently working on her second book, The Cost of Borders, which theorizes borders as a costly, and often deadly, transaction.

Jennifer Hyndman

Jennifer Hyndman is Associate Vice-President of Research at York University where she is Professor and former director of the Centre for Refugee Studies. Her research focuses on refugee resettlement in Canada, social inclusion and private sponsorship, as well as the geopolitics and management of displacement abroad, including the biopolitics of refugee camps and humanitarian responses to war and other disasters. Hyndman’s most recent book is Refugees in Extended Exile: Living on the Edge, with Wenona Giles (Routledge, 2017). Hyndman is author of Dual Disasters: Humanitarian Aid after the 2004 Tsunami (2011), Managing Displacement: Refugees and the Politics of Humanitarianism (2000), and co-editor with W. Giles of, Sites of Violence: Gender and Conflict Zones (2004).

Jennifer Hyndman is a Professor in Social Science and Geography at York University in Toronto. Her forthcoming book with Wenona Giles is Refugees in Extended Exile: Living on the Edge (Routledge). Among other published pieces and two films, Hyndman is author of Dual Disasters: Humanitarian Aid after the 2004 Tsunami (2011), Managing Displacement: Refugees and the Politics of Humanitarianism (University of Minnesota Press, 2000), and co-editor with Wenona Giles of, Sites of Violence: Gender and Conflict Zones (University of California Press, 2004).

Jennifer Hyndman is a Professor of Geography at York University in Toronto. Her research focuses on the geopolitics of forced migration, the biopolitics of humanitarian responses to displacement, and refugee resettlement. Her most recent book (with Giles) is Refugees in Extended Exile: Living on the Edge (Routledge).

Jennifer Hyndman is a Professor of Geography at York University in Toronto. Her research focuses on the geopolitics of forced migration, the biopolitics of humanitarian responses to displacement, and refugee resettlement. Her most recent book (with Giles) is Refugees in Extended Exile: Living on the Edge (Routledge).

Michaela Hynie

Michaela Hynie is Associate Professor, Department of Psychology and is currently the Interim Director of the Centre for Refugee Studies, York University. She conducts interdisciplinary multi-method community-based research on social determinants of health with communities experiencing social conflict, social exclusion, or forced displacement and migration. This work includes the development and evaluation of social, institutional and/or policy interventions that can improve health and well-being through improving access to healthcare or other services, improving living conditions, and enhancing social and economic inclusion.

Christopher Kyriakides

Chris Kyriakides is Canada Research Chair in Citizenship, Social Justice and Ethno-Racialization, in the Department of Sociology at York University.

Ochan Robert Leomoi

Ochan Robert Leomoi is a co-founder of Dadaab Response Association (DRA) and holds the office of the Administration and Research Management. Ochan obtained Master Degree in Education in 2020 from York University-Toronto, Canada after earning his first degree in Human Geography under the Borderless Higher Education for Refugees project. He co-authored two articles, “Teachers in Displacement and Education for the return” which were published in the Forced Migration Review (FMR). As a researcher under Dadaab Response Association, Ochan has conducted five different academic research projects.

Bahati Maganjo

Originally from Rwanda, Bahati Maganjo is an economic mobility pathway pilot (EMPP) consultant. Before immigrating to New Glasgow, Nova Scotia in 2021, she has worked with the University of Oxford’s Refugee-Led Research Hub in East Africa since its inception in 2020 while contributing as a mentor.

Andrée Ménard

Andrée is WUSC’s Durable Solutions for Refugees Specialist. In this role, she supports the expansion, implementation and development of initiatives that increase durable solutions and
improve education and economic opportunities for refugees, including WUSC’s flagship Student Refugee Program. She also provides technical assistance and guidance to emerging education pathway programs globally. She previously worked for Global Affairs Canada and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Ecuador. She holds a Masters in Sociology and a specialization in International Development and Globalization.

Petra Molnar

Petra Molnar is a lawyer and anthropologist specializing in technology, migration, and human rights. She is the Associate Director of the Refugee Law Lab at York University and runs the Migration and Technology Monitor, a multilingual archive of work interrogating technological experiments on people crossing borders. Petra is currently working on her first book, Artificial Borders: AI, Surveillance, and Border Tech Experiments, and is a 2022-2023 Fellow at the Berkman Klein Centre for Internet & Society at Harvard University.

Eqbal Nahzat

Eqbal is a passionate human rights activist and advocate for youth education, with a particular focus on conflict-affected countries, specifically his home country of Afghanistan. He is currently a graduate student in the Department of Political Science at Memorial University, where he also serves as a Graduate Assistant with the WUSC Local Committee and a Research Assistant in the Political Science Department.

Eqbal's dedication to social justice began during his undergraduate studies, where he earned a degree with honors in Law from Herat University in Afghanistan. He subsequently worked as the Director of the Legal Clinic at Kardan University, where he provided free legal services to marginalized communities and taught clinical legal education to law students. Additionally, he served as the Campus Director of the Hult Prize Foundation, organizing one of the world's largest on-campus social entrepreneurship competition for universities in Afghanistan.

Eqbal has represented Afghanistan in international legal competitions and conferences, including Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot and Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot , and has contributed as a judge, coach, and advisor for these events. He has also trained law students in human rights, legal research and oral advocacy, and legal writing.

Eqbal's research interests include democracy building, political institutions reform, and the politics of refugee protection. His work is grounded in his experiences living and working in conflict-affected countries and his commitment to improving the lives of marginalized communities and youths.

Chizuru Nobe-Ghelani

Chizuru Nobe-Ghelani (she/her) is a racialized migrant settler who is originally from rural Japan. She is an Assistant Professor at the School of Social Work, Renison University College, University of Waterloo. Her scholarship and pedagogy are informed by extensive social work practice in the area of health and wellbeing with marginalized communities both locally and internationally.  Her research is centered on the politics and policies pertaining to migrant communities, particularly with regards to the colonial and racial politics of Canadian citizenship, historical and contemporary immigration, refugee and citizenship policies, social and structural determinants of migrant health and Indigenous-migrant relations. She deeply cares about Indigenous reconciliation and sovereignty, ethical social work practice, migrant rights, land stewardship and ecological justice.  She currently leads a community-based research project with the Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture (CCVT) on Indigenous- Refugee relations which aims to facilitate reconciliation and wholistic healing through land-oriented education.  She is a registered social worker, a certified forest therapy guide and trained in horticultural therapy.

Mark Okello Oyat

Mark Okello Oyat is a Ugandan refugee residing in Dadaab, Kenya. He taught refugee students of different levels; primary, secondary and university from the camp. He holds Masters-in-Education from York University, Toronto, Canada. Currently, he is the East Africa regional representative of the Tertiary Refugee Students Network (TRSN) and the Director of the Dadaab Response Association, a refugee-led organization at the forefront of knowledge production, as a refugee researcher/scholar in encampment. Mark is an advocate for meaningful refugee participation at global, regional, national and local levels.

Links to some of his online publications: Mark also co-authored with other scholars articles found in Forced Migration Review Magazine, issues 60 and 70 ( and

Jay Ramasubramanyam

Jay Ramasubramanyam is an Assistant Professor in the Law & Society Program at York University. Dr. Ramasubramanyam obtained his B.A. in Criminology from Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. He received a Postgraduate Diploma and LL.M. in International Human Rights from Birmingham City University, United Kingdom and his Ph.D. from the Department of Law and Legal Studies and the Institute of Political Economy, at Carleton University, Ottawa. 

He is a global south migration researcher. His research expertise includes forced migration, international refugee law, statelessness, third world approaches to international law, human rights, race and racialization, postcolonial theory, and South Asian studies. His research explores the asymmetries of power, knowledge production and the ostensible legitimacy of norms in the field of refugee studies and refugee law.

Prior to his academic career, he was employed by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) as a Refugee Status Determination Associate and in the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) as a Protection Field Officer.

Hawa Sabriye

Hawa Sabriye has over seven years of experience in education/teaching, humanitarian aid, and international development, and is currently working with UNICEF Somalia as an Education Specialist. She holds a BA in English Literature and Human Geography, a BA and MA in Education, and Graduate Diplomas in Refugee and Migration Studies and Post-Secondary Education: Community, Culture, and Policy. She previously worked as a Humanitarian Affairs Officer for OCHA Somalia, supporting the Inter-cluster Coordination Unit. Hawa is also a doctoral candidate at the University of Toronto in the International Education Leadership & Policy program. Her research focuses on trauma-informed teaching and learning in Somalia. Hawa’s interests include Afrocentric education, reading, and water painting. 

Rachel Silver

Rachel Silver is an Assistant Professor of Education, Faculty Affiliate of the Centre for Refugee Studies (CRS), and Co-Director of the Borderless Higher Education for Refugees (BHER) project at York University. An anthropologist of education and development, Silver explores how discourses, programs, and policies related to gender and sexuality intersect with young people’s lives in contexts of humanitarian crisis. She has over ten years of experience researching girls’ education in South/Eastern Africa, including in Malawi, Kenya, and Ethiopia. Silver’s other scholarly interests include forced migration and education; state/NGO/international funder relations; international development education policy; and transnational feminisms. Rachel has published in interdisciplinary journals including Gender and Education, Compare, Forced Migration Review, and African Studies Review.

Craig Damian Smith

Craig Damian Smith (he/him) earned his PhD in Political Science from the University of Toronto. His research uses mixed methods to explore the global politics of irregular migration governance, refugee resettlement, and refugee integration. He was previously a Senior Research Associate at the CERC in Migration & Integration at TMU (2020-2022) and the Associate Director of the Global Migration Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy (2017-2020). He is a Research Affiliate at the Centre for Refugee Studies, where he has conducted SSHRC-funded projects on the drivers of irregular migration to Canada, and access to legal aid and access to justice for refugee claimants. His new SSHRC project, with partners in Tijuana, Mexico will explore relationships between global visa and asylum policies and intercontinental mixed migration to Latin America, the U.S., and Canada. Craig is also the Executive Director and Principal Investigator at Pairity (, which applies data-driven solutions to refugee resettlement and community sponsorship. 


Yvonne Su

Dr. Yvonne Su is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Equity Studies at York University. Dr. Su is a specialist on forced migration, queer migration, migrant remittances, climate change-induced displacement, social capital, and post-disaster recovery. She holds a PhD in Political Science and International Development from the University of Guelph and a Masters in Refugee and Forced Migration Studies from the University of Oxford.

Taryn Tufford

Taryn Tufford is a Senior Program Assistant at the International Students Overcoming War (ISOW) program at Wilfrid Laurier University. She has 6 years of experience working with international and refugee student populations in educational settings and supporting newcomers’ transitions to Canada. Taryn has a BA in Languages & Literatures and is currently pursuing a Master of Education in Student Affairs at Wilfrid Laurier University. Her professional interests include immigration and refugee policy, the holistic support of newcomers, and international and refugee students’ experiences in higher education.

Malaika Abow 

Malaika Abow is currently studying International Development Studies at York University with a particular focus on gender and the environment. She is also pursuing a certificate in French proficiency.

Rolando Argueta 

Rolando (he/him) is a third-year undergraduate student at York University, double-majoring in Human Rights and Equity Studies, as well as Indigenous Studies. Pursuing an undergraduate degree on a part-time basis, Rolando is also a professional cook and has been working in the Toronto food scene for almost a decade. Rolando is passionate about transitioning into a career path that aligns with his current studies. 

Jessica Lalewicz 

Jessica Lalewicz is a 4th year Interdisciplinary Social Science Student at York University. She has experience as a teaching assistant and aspires to become a lawyer. She has a strong passion for justice and change.

Habone Igueh 

Habone Igueh is a Bcom Commerce undergraduate student in the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies at York University.

Deepa Nagari 

Deepa Nagari is a first-year PhD student in the department of Socio-Legal Studies, York University, specializing in refugee and forced migration issues.

2023 Course Director

Mavis Odei Boateng, CRS Scholar in Residence

Administrative Support

Humaima Asfaque, Summer Course Program Assistant

Administrative Support

Michele Millard, Centre for Refugee Studies Coordinator

Apply Online

Applicants must submit a complete Summer Course Application Form along with a resume or CV, letter of reference from an employer or volunteer supervisor, and a short autobiographical sketch outlining their academic and practical background with respect to refugee issues as well as a short statement of particular interests in this field.

Funding for the CRS Summer Course is organized by participants themselves. CRS offers partial bursaries to a  limited number of participants based on availability of internal funding and need. In order to organize your funding, we recommend that you obtain sponsorship from the training allocation of a project or programme attached to your organization or donors that fund professional development activities.

Visa Information

2023 tuition fees


Early bird rate: $1,075 CAD + 13%HST (deadline April 1, 2023)

Early bird for participants based in the Global South: $750 CAD + 13% HST (deadline April 1, 2023)

Regular rate: $1,500 CAD + 13%HST (deadline May 12, 2023)

*This includes coffee breaks and a light lunch. Accommodation, travel and other costs are not included and must be covered by the participant.

Attending virtually:

Early bird rate: $925 CAD + 13%HST (deadline April 1, 2023)

Early bird for participants based in the Global South: $600 CAD + 13% HST (deadline April 1, 2023)

Regular rate: $1,350 CAD + 13%HST (deadline May 12, 2023)

All payments are by credit card only. Please click on the Eventbrite logo to complete your payment.

Tuition subsidies are very limited and subject to availability. Submission deadline: February 17, 2023

At York University

Unfortunately, due to other competing events happening at York at this time, on campus accommodation will not be available.


Other hotels near campus might be a little cheaper but require a short commute (please note that bus service may be irregular especially on the weekend, and taxi rides may end up adding up to the difference in hotel price, for this reason we recommend on-campus accommodation as a first choice).

Hotels near York (10-minute taxi ride):

Best Western Plus Toronto North York Hotel and Suites

50 Norfinch Drive, North York, Ontario M3N 1X1
Tel: 416-663-9500

Hotel rate: Check for room rates here
Map and transportation information: Click here

Comfort Inn Toronto North

66 Norfinch Drive, North York, Ontario M3N 1X1
Tel: 416-736-4700
Toll Free calls: 1-877-424-6423

Hotel room rate: Check for room rates here
Map and transportation information: Click here

Holiday Inn Express Toronto-North York

30 Norfinch Drive, North York, Ontario M3N 1X1
Tel: 1 – 416-665-3500
Fax: 1 – 416 - 665-0807
Toll-Free calls: 1-800-HOLIDAY (465-4329)

Hotel room rate: Check for room rates here
Map and transportation information: click here

Downtown Options (*please note: it will take you about 1 hour to get to York University from downtown Toronto).

Planet Traveler (Hostel) (*best option for the price and location)

357 College Street; close to Spadina and College (closest subway station, Spadina) Dorms and 2-person private rooms available.  For Room Rates, please see:

George Brown College Campus Accommodation

(view on map)

Located near the Distillery District, which is a lovely place to enjoy an evening drink, and also has some nice restaurants, outdoor cafes and even art galleries! Lots of pedestrian traffic for summer strolling. The style of the area is renovated Victorian Industrial, so think brickwork and cobblestones…

To get from the George Brown College Residence to York University:

Walk from the residence to King Street (1-2 minutes) and take the King streetcar westbound to St. Andrew Subway Station (20 minutes) and transfer to the Yonge-University subway line (#1 northbound) and get off at the York university subway stop (about 40 minutes).

You can also find accommodation through third party booking services:




York University is located at 4700 Keele Street, Toronto, Ontario, CANADA  M3J 1P3


Taxi from Toronto Pearson International Airport
You can take a taxi directly from the airport to the York University Keele Campus. A taxi from the airport to the University is approximately $50 Canadian Dollars. Many taxi companies also offer a flat rate.

Driving from Toronto Pearson International Airport
Take Hwy 401 East to Hwy 400 North, exit at Finch Avenue going east, and turn left at Sentinel Road. Follow Sentinel until the end where you will find Pond Road. Turn right onto Pond Road. You are now on York University Campus. *If staying at the ELC continue on Pond Road and make a left onto James Gillies Street (the Student Services Parking Garage will be visible on the left). The Executive Learning Centre (ELC) is next door to the Student Services Parking Garage, on Fine Arts Road, adjacent to the Schulich School of Business.

Driving from Downtown Toronto
Take the Allen Expressway north to Finch Avenue. Turn left, going west on Finch Avenue to Keele Street. Turn right onto Keele Street going north to The Pond Road entrance. Turn left onto the campus via The Pond Road entrance. Take The Pond Road to James Gillies Street, the Student Services Parking Garage will be visible on the left. The Executive Learning Centre (ELC) is next door to the Student Services Parking Garage, on Fine Arts Road, adjacent to the Schulich School of Business.

Public Transit (TTC)
The subway now runs directly to York University on Line 1 Yonge-University. for more information

Course Location
To access a York University campus map, please click HERE.
*The summer course will take place in the Kaneff Tower (#95 on the map) in room 519.

Mavis Boateng
Summer Course Academic Director
Centre for Refugee Studies
York University
Kaneff Tower, Room 850
4700 Keele Street, Toronto
Ontario, Canada M3J 1P3