About // Curriculum vitae
My name is Michelle La. I am a qualitative analyst and Master's anthropology candidate at Simon Fraser University. I love designing research projects/instruments, and innovative design. It doesn't matter what field it is, I enjoy the challenge of figuring out the best strategies to gain insights or to approach a problem.
Since 2013, I have been apart of interdisciplinary research projects with focuses on scholarly communication and open access; work disability policy; labour precarity and history; human-rights; maternal and global health; Inuit housing policies; and in urban waterfront history and renewal. The wide range of these projects is reflective of my zeal for tackling complex issues through multidisciplinary critical inquiry.
My graduate research investigates the economic practices and spaces of sneaker reselling by focusing on risk and speculation amongst sneaker traders in Metro Vancouver. I am particularly passionate about this research because of its intersections with some of my interests: material culture, youth culture, informal markets, and behavioural economics.
In addition to research, I am passionate about post-secondary teaching. While I have experience teaching in topic-specific sociology and anthropology courses, research design in particular is one of my favourite topics because I believe when students learn research design and methodologies in the process they sharpen their critical thinking and data literacy skills.
My research interests include: consumption and value; fashion; open scholarship, scholarly communication; speculation and risk; urban spaces; cities; architecture; visual art; economic geography/anthropology; and digital currencies.
I am an advocate for non-traditional forms of research communication and open access. I believe that graduate students especially should not be sheepish about self-promotion: here’s my Q&A on the topic.
In my spare time I enjoy listening to podcasts and watching documentaries on history, science, and culture; fine-tuning this website; reading current affairs and non-fiction; and catching up on sleep or work. I am interested in opportunities where I am challenged with complex questions/problems and where I can apply my robust skill set. For inquiries and my full C.V. contact me through this form.
simon fraser university
Masters of Arts, Anthropology (2016 - in progress)
President’s Dream Colloquium: Making Knowledge Public graduate seminar student
Certificate in University Teaching and Learning
Certificate for Instructional Skills Workshop
Bachelor's of Arts, Joint Honours, Sociology and Anthropology
The Effects of Automation, Mechanization, and Professionalism on fostering camaraderie within ILWU Local 502, from the 1960s to Present, SFU Sociology and Anthropology, Undergraduate Honours Essay (2014).
Certificate in Social justice
university of british columbia
Certificate in Professional Communication (in progress)
IndEdu200x: Reconciliation Through Indigenous Education through UBCEdx
Other completed courses taken through UBC Extended Learning
User experience strategy
Strategies for effective intercultural communication
SKILLS // competencies
Qualitative and quantitative design/theory/methodologies
Conducting interviews and focus groups
Semi-structured survey creation and analysis
Discourse, thematic, and content analysis
Transcription and interview summarization
Research communication: e.g. conference posters, flyers, online forms
Content writing; summary/report writing
Stakeholders and partner engagement
Strong written and verbal communication; public speaking
Negotiation of contracts
Familiar with user experience (UX) design strategy
Event- and project- management
Reconciliation of expenses; Budget projections
Adobe/Adobe Experience Manager
Social media: Twitter; Facebook; LinkedIn; Instagram; Pinterest
Fluent in English
Rudimentary German reading comprehension
Basic spoken proficiency and fluent conversational understanding in Vietnamese
Freelance communications specialist
2019 - Present
Publishing Program, Simon Fraser University
2018 - Present
British Columbia cluster research coordinator
Department of Health Sciences, Simon Fraser University
2017 - 2019
Department of Sociology & Anthropology, Simon Fraser University
2017 - 2018
Department of Labour Studies, Simon Fraser University
PRE-ECLAMPSIA, ECLAMPSIA, MONITORING, PREVENTION & TREATMENT
Department of Gynaecology & Obstetrics, University of British Columbia
2015 - 2017
Department of Urban Studies, Simon Fraser University
2013 - 2015
Fore more details on my responsibilities in these roles, click here.
TEACHING ASSISTANT/TUTOR MARKER, SOCIOLOGY & ANTHROPOLOGY, SIMON FRASER UNIVERSITY
Violence in War & Peace (upcoming)
Social Policy and Tourism
Processes of Development and Underdevelopment
Race, Immigration, and the Canadian State
Introduction to Research Design
Have also been a guest lecturer (research ethics)
Introduction to Sociology
workshop facilitator, Simon fraser university
“Humanizing Canvas (SFU’s Learning Management System): Communication and Collaboration in Online Learning Environments,” co-facilitator, 23rd Annual Spring TA/TM Day: The Teaching Orientation Program (January, 2019)
“Humanizing Canvas (SFU’s Learning Management System): Communication and Collaboration in Online Learning Environments,” co-facilitator, 33rd Annual Fall TA/TM Day: The Teaching Orientation Program (September, 2018)
"New to Canada? Working on your English? This session is for you!" co-facilitator, Graduate Student Orientation (August, 2018)
PUBLICATIONS // CONFERENCE PAPERS
"Sneakerheads and Their Trading Places," paper for Trading Places I, 5th Global Conference on Economic Geography, Cologne, Germany. July 2018 (with Pamela Stern).
International Longshore Warehousemen (ILWU) Local 502 Committee, Peter Hall, Chris Madsen, Liam O’Flaherty, and Michelle La. Along the Fraser River: History and Stories from ILWU Local 502, Granville Island Publishing
“Who needs industrial heritage?: Global dreams/local histories at two Canadian sites,” Invited paper for Clashes Over Value: Tourism, Conservation and Natural Resource Extraction, annual meeting of the American Anthropological Association, Washington, DC, December 4, 2014 (with Pamela Stern and Peter V. Hall).
Awards // honours
Graduate Student Profile: Michelle La, Sociology & Anthropology, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, Simon Fraser University, April 4, 2019
$40K shoes, rare finds draws thousands to Vancouver Sneaker Con. The CBC, February 10. 2019
Featured as apart of the Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies “amazing grad student” video series, Simon Fraser University, January 2, 2019
What grads do: The fascinating culture and economy of sneakers, The Peak, October 20, 2018
Celebrating Tet and the importance of involving Vietnamese Youth, The Source, Volume 15, Issue 13
Laurine Harrison Graduate Thesis Award, Simon Fraser University
Travel Research Minor Awards, Simon Fraser University
Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition university finalist, Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies, Simon Fraser University, Spring 2018
Graduate Fellowship, Department of Sociology & Anthropology, Simon Fraser University
Vice-President Research-Undergraduate Student Research Award (VPR-USR) three-time recipient, Simon Fraser University
Other contributions // Presentations
“Is making knowledge public a part of a professor’s job?,” 2019 - Confronting the Disinformation Age/Innovations in Research, Simon Fraser University, April 10, 2019 (with Juan Pablo Alperin and Esteban Morales)
Graduate student guest speaker on the importance of research communication at Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies Photo Exhibition Reception, Simon Fraser University, January, 15, 2019. Read my Q&A about the talk with ScholCommLab here