Residency: Pediatrics in Victoria, B.C.
I was always more of an arts-focused kid, but later in high school I found I had an affinity for science. The more I studied biology, the more I was inspired by the human body. I knew I needed a career that positioned me to work directly with people. Studying medicine meant that I could harness my interest in science to help people live happy and healthy lives.
I did my undergrad degree in medical sciences. It was a brand-new program at Dalhousie University that included courses on ethics and sociology of medicine. Those classes opened my eyes to the complex social and ethical dilemmas in medical relationships and institutions. They drove me to pursue medicine with a social lens, with the aim of doing good, not just for individuals, but for families and communities as a whole.
The Island Medical Program is a smaller class based at the University of Victoria. We get to know every person in our class and many faculty on a personal level. They are endlessly kind, driven and uniquely themselves. We rally around each other when someone is struggling and come together to dance, eat snacks and hike regularly. There isn’t one moment that I can point out as a favourite; rather, it’s all the moments we spent laughing, learning and bonding.
There was one occasion that I remember fondly in spring of 2022. I went sailing with a couple classmates and misread the chart. We ended up getting the boat stuck on a reef. My friends were cool as cucumbers in the face of what was possibly a dangerous situation. They kept calm, helped me troubleshoot, and ultimately succeeded in freeing the boat. When we arrived at our destination and anchored, they helped me take care of the necessary safety measures while cooking supper and bringing back the light-hearted fun that we all needed. These are the friends you want to have in a crisis!
“Learning medicine is like trying to drink from a firehose.”
“Work smarter, not harder.”
“Teamwork makes the dream work.”
People are going to say all these things too many times – and they’re all true, so listen.
Once you hit medical school, you’ve been in school for a long time. You can’t put your life on hold to get through your studies anymore. We all have families, relationships, hobbies and other projects that make us who we are and that deserve our attention. It’s important to find compromises in your studies so that you can cultivate a life that brings you joy. People in medicine love helping people. Let them help you too!
I am staying in Victoria to pursue residency in pediatric medicine! This is a four-year program that may, or may not, be followed by a fellowship to subspecialize.
Before I start residency, my goals include: (1) tie up a research project, (2) clear out some old stuff at a yard sale, and (3) have fun and relax! I have plans to sail around the San Juan islands, canoe with some classmates, and visit Portugal, Spain and Scotland.
Working with children and youth is a unique joy! I will get to witness babies on their first day of life and work with families when their children are unwell. It is a true privilege.
Staying in Victoria means staying close to my family and the land I grew up on. This was a major draw for me. Having been at the Island Medical Program for the last four years, I know that the medical community in Victoria is warm, supportive, fun and teeming with clinical excellence. I look forward to joining a close-knit residency program that has already welcomed me with open arms. I will look to my senior residents and staff for their guidance and lean on my brilliant co-resident, Lindsay, as we navigate this next challenge together. I am confident that we are in for a wild and wonderful time.