Brescia Associate Professor and Research Team Receive Catalyst Grant to Tackle Issue of Youth Vaping in Ontario

August 5 – Dr. Jamie Seabrook, Associate Professor in the School of Food and Nutritional Sciences at Brescia University College, is the recipient of a Catalyst Grant: Health Effects of Vaping from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). The one-year (2020-2021) $100,000 grant will fund the project, "Geospatial analyses of vape retailer accessibility: examining socioeconomic and environmental determinants."

The team of researchers includes Dr. Seabrook as the Nominated Principal Applicant, Dr. Jason Gilliland as Co-Principal Applicant, and Co-Applicants Dr. Kelly Anderson, Dr. Gina Martin and Dr. Jacob Shelley. Dr. Christopher Mackie, Medical Officer of Health and CEO for the Middlesex London Health Unit, is also a Knowledge User on the team.

The research team will examine how the accessibility of vape retailers and the content of municipal and school board policies regarding vaping, vary in relation to the locations of schools and the characteristics of neighbourhoods throughout Ontario. Dr. Seabrook notes, "To tackle this problem, it is critical that we gain a better understanding of the socio-ecological factors influencing youth exposure to vaping, including environmental (social and physical) and policy determinants. It is in these spheres where changes have the greatest potential impact on health at the population level."

The project consists of three objectives: First, it will understand Ontario vape retailers in relation to schools (elementary and secondary) and neighbourhoods. Second, it will analyze existing vaping-related regulations and policies within Ontario municipalities and school boards to identify how they address potential youth vape exposure. Finally, it will understand the impact on accessibility of vape retailers due to different potential policy scenarios for permanently restricting vape retail locations within certain distances of schools.

Dr. Lauretta Frederking, Vice-Principal and Academic Dean, is keen to learn the findings from this research and states, “Dr. Seabrook continues to study the most important issues affecting the health and well-being of our society. The impact of vaping on society is undeniable and his research will begin to unpack the factors that can make sense of the trends and contribute to a better, healthier world for our young people.”

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Brescia University College, Canada’s women’s university college, is affiliated with Western University. The 1,600 women registered as either full- or part-time students at Brescia study a wide variety of subjects in the Schools of Behavioural & Social Sciences, Food & Nutritional Sciences, Humanities and Leadership & Social Change in an empowering, compassionate, student-centred and invigorating environment. Degrees are granted by Western. The Catholic University College welcomes students from all backgrounds and values diversity. For more current and archived news, a listing of faculty experts, and photos please visit our Online Media Room, at