With the all-too-soon end of summer comes the beginning of a new academic year. This week we welcome members of Meds 2018, the 160th class to enter the study of Medicine at Queen’s since our school opened its doors in 1854.
A few facts about these new members of our learning community:
They were selected from our largest ever applicant pool – 4366 highly qualified students submitted applications last fall.
Their average age is 24 with a range of 20 to 31 years. For the first time in several years, there are slightly more men (55) than women (45) in the class.
They hail from no fewer than 38 communities across Canada, including; Ajax, Belle River, Belleville, Brampton (2), Brooklin, Burlington, Caledon, Calgary(4), Dundas, Edmonton, Fall River, Guelph, Halifax, Harrowsmith, Holland Landing, Kanata (3), Kingston (5), Langely (2), London (3), Markham (4), Midland, Mississauga (8), North Bay, North York (2), Oakville, Ottawa (10), Peachland, Peterborough, Sherwood Park, St Marys , Thornhill (5), Toronto (21), Vancouver, Waterloo (2), West Vancouver (2), Whitby (2), Whitehorse, Winnipeg
Ninety-one of our new students have completed an Undergraduate degree, and twenty-seven have postgraduate degrees, including nine PhDs. The average cumulative grade point average achieved by these students in their pre-medical studies was 3.76. Their undergraduate universities and degree programs are listed in the tables below:
An eclectic and academically very qualified group, to be sure. Last week they undertook a variety of orientation activities organized by both faculty and their upper year colleagues.
On their first day at Queen’s, they were welcomed to the study of Medicine by myself and Dean Richard Reznick. Over the course of the week, they met curricular leaders who will be particularly involved in their first year, including Dr. Michelle Gibson (Year 1 Director) and Dr. Cherie Jones (Clinical Skills Director). They were also introduced to Dr. Renee Fitzpatrick (Director of Student Affairs) and our excellent learner support team, including Drs. Jennifer Carpenter, John Smythe, Kelly Howse, Peter O’Neill and Susan MacDonald, who oriented them to the Learner Wellness, Career Counseling and Academic Support services that will be provided throughout their years with us. They met members of our superb administrative and educational support teams led by Jacqueline Schutt, Jennifer Saunders and Sheila Pinchin, and first year Curricular Coordinator Brittany Lovelock.
Dr. Jaclyn Duffin led them in the annual Hippocratic Oath ceremony, and coordinated the very popular and much appreciated “Pearls of Wisdom” session, where fourth year students nominate and introduce faculty members who have been particularly impactful in their education, and invite them to pass on a few words of advice to the new students. This year, Drs. Bob Connelly, Jay Engel, Michelle Gibson, Mala Joneja, Michael Leveridge, Susan Moffatt, Michael Sylvester, David Taylor, Ruth Wilson and former Dean David Walker were selected for this honour.
On Friday, they were welcomed to our Anatomy Learning Centre and facilities by Drs. Steve Pang, Conrad Reifel, Ron Easteal and facility manager Rick Hunt, and participated in the annual memorial service with a moving dedication by University Chaplin Kate Johnson.
Their Meds 2017 upper year colleagues welcomed them with a number of formal and not-so-formal events. These include orientations to Queen’s and Kingston, introductions to the mentorship program, and a variety of evening social events which, judging by appearances the next morning, were much enjoyed.
For all these arrangements, flawlessly coordinated, I’m very grateful to Rebecca Jozsa, our Admissions Officer, and second year President and Vice-President Jonathan Cluett and Arian Ghassemian.
At their first day welcoming session they were called upon to demonstrate commitment to their studies, their profession and their patients. They were assured that they will have a voice within our school and be treated with the same respect they are expected to provide each other, their faculty and all patients and volunteers they encounter through their medical school careers. I invite you to join me in welcoming these new members of our school and medical community.