O- Week for Class of 2015 is off to a great start!

Faculty and UGME staff coming into 132a in the new Meds building on the morning of Tuesday, August 30 were treated to a very encouraging sight:  the class of 2015 was sitting in their new chairs, at the new tables, discussing in groups!  Just as all of the planners had hoped!  It was the beginning of a short series of talks, and getting to know staff, faculty and students from the class of Meds 2014…

The new Meds students listened intently to Associate Dean of Undergraduate Medicine, Dr. Tony Sanfilippo as he assuaged their fears by answering the Top 10 Questions First Year Medical Students Have.  The Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Dr. Richard  Reznick, quoting from C.S. Lewis and Bob Dylan challenged the students to be restless.  Dr. Ted Ashbury spoke about professionalism, and Dr. Jenn Carpenter, Dr. Peter O’Neill and Dr. Sue MacDonald all let the students know how they work to support them.  Thurarshen Jeyalingam (T.J.), Meds 2013 and President of the Aesculapian Society, spoke of the many ways students can get involved.  Dr. Michelle Gibson gave greetings as the Director of Year 1, and Lynel Jackson and Matt Simpson of MEdTech alerted the students to their new learning management system MedTech.   Dr. Henry Averns gave a whirlwind tour of Clinical and Communication Skills (Different Ways to be Happy!) and a class photo was taken, to join the Queen’s Meds class photos since 1854!

Alex Corneman, Meds 2014, and his committee have organized a host of more than 40 volunteer students from the second year class to be the guides for students over this week.  These students have come back to Queen’s during the last week of their vacations to help our new Meds students become part of the Queen’s Meds Community.  Takis Tryphonopoulos (Meds 2014) says, “This is my pleasure…I look forward to coming and meeting the new students.”  “It’s like paying it forward,” echoes his classmate Sarah Felder. 

During the barbeque with staff, students formed their first groups in Meds—groups of 2014s and 2013s sat together, as faculty stopped by tables to say hello.  New Meds student Krishin Singh says “At first I was excited, but then I got nervous about all of the changes in my life—new city, new school, new people.  But after this session, I’m excited all over again!”  Michael Chaikof (Meds 2015) agrees:  “It was nice to put faces to names of people I’d heard about.  And Dr. Sanfilippo’s talk made us feel better about this experience.”  And Ashley Thomson (Meds 2015) spoke about the team work at the school—helping her move in, and helping her get acquainted with Kingston. 

Dr. Averns was observing the students and faculty as they interacted.  He reflected,
“There’s something about Queen’s—we are a family—all these colleagues are here showing an amazing level of commitment to the students.”   Dr. O’Neill was happy he was able to say to the students that the School of Medicine built this facility for our students—and they are using the new room exactly as we’d hoped.

Yes, O-Week for Queen’s Meds is off to a great start!  How do we know?  Eve Purdy, Meds 2015 and hailing from Okotoks, Alberta, said it best:  “It already feels like home!”