Maria received her Ph.D. in Theoretical Chemistry from the University of Toronto and worked as a scientist until 2006.
Maria is one of the founders of Tirgan Festival, where she volunteered as an artistic director, publicity coordinator, and spokesperson and established the Tirgan Short Story Contest.
Her contributions to science and the arts have been recognized by many scholarships, grants, and awards including NSERC, OGS, Canada Scholarship, the Ontario Volunteer Award, and the Le Roy Prize.
Maria has published three books and over a hundred essays, articles, and stories. The title story from her short story collection, My First Friend, won the Editors’ Choice Award and was