Resident Leader Award
This award recognizes a resident who has demonstrated outstanding contributions to residency education in their own program, or provincially and/or nationally. The Resident-Leader has had a positive impact through exemplary teaching skills, development of educational curricula in teaching and assessment, advocacy of residency education, and any other efforts that have enhanced the educational experience, and/or contributed to innovation in residency education.
Hussam Kaka – Diagnostic Radiology
“Hussam consistently demonstrates strong leadership and role model skills, having a passion for innovation and motivation to want to make things better. He embodies collegiality and is always one to say “yes” when anyone needs help. Unsurprisingly, Hussam was nominated by his peers to be RPCR, a role which transitioned into chief resident. Throughout his two-year term he has always advocated for the residents and initiated improvements in our education and program.”
Jason McConnery – Pediatrics
“Heroes are defined by their actions; Jason McConnery has defined himself as an outstanding resident leader and medical educator on the individual, program, and university-wide scale. His dedication to the vision of a learner-centred Academic Half-Day curriculum has produced an amazing new syllabus and a revolutionary Spaced Repetition model. He has shown his passionate scholarly ambition for advancing medical education as an unstoppable force driving our program’s medical education journal club. Jason’s extraordinary efforts are recognized by every individual learner he teaches and by the entirety of the university’s Postgraduate Medical Education program across all residency programs through his leadership in planning, organizing, and running the annual Multidisciplinary Academic Day and multiple complementary smaller scale events.”
Saurabh Gupta – Cardiac Surgery
“Dr. Gupta has proven his leadership in medical education through his initiatives & involvement with multiple award-winning research teams and mentorship programs. In addition to being an excellent clinical teacher on the wards – taking time to explain concepts and teach in the operating room – he continues to mentor students in research. As the chair of the Canadian Society of Cardiac Surgeons Workforce committee, he is a national voice for trainees across Canada. Serving as the co-chair of the Trainee Program Planning committee of the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress, he also leads the development of networking events, workshops & skills labs for trainees. Locally, he leads clinical skills training for medical students, has been well-received as an instructor for various student interest groups, and has provided constructive feedback to students as a clinical exam preceptor. On an individual level, Dr. Gupta has been a supportive and encouraging mentor, providing constructive and straightforward advice to junior learners at all stages – even going so far as to directly connect students who may be interested in other fields with his colleagues.”
Resident Mentor Award
This award recognizes a resident who has demonstrated outstanding advocacy for medical students and resident colleagues through individual mentorship and exemplary role-modelling of the CanMEDS roles. The Resident Mentor can be recognized for his/her support and advocacy for the education and well-being of trainees in the clinical setting, supervision of research projects, exemplary teaching and coaching that promotes learning in a safe and positive learning environment.
Eric To – Internal Medicine
“Dr. To takes it upon himself to provide exceptional support and service to all students. On the first day of his program, he organized an event which brought many residents and medical students together to learn about a variety of fascinating fields in medicine. From the very start, he made everyone feel welcome and created a safe space for open discussion and learning. I was very fortunate that day to have been matched with him as my mentor.”
Yuding Wang – Urology
“Dr. Wang’s teaching extends beyond formal instructorship, too. Throughout our time working with him as our senior, he has always found ways to go above the call of duty as a mentor. Many of us can easily recall nights or weekends on call where he has checked in to see if any assistance is required, or even just to check in on our well-being (notably, when he is not on call and not expected to be available for work). Other times, Ding has either stayed late to assist with case management and resident teaching either on the ward or in the operating room. These are not one-off experiences; his dedication to resident mentorship and safe patient care have been an inspiration for us all to find ways to be stronger in our roles as physician trainees.”
Sameer Sharif – Critical Care
“As someone who has learned from Dr. Sharif throughout the years, one of his coined sayings is: “There is at least one person in the hospital who will always teach you something every day: the patient.” Having been lucky enough to spend time with Dr. Sharif, I would like to add a provision to that statement: “The patient and Dr. Sharif will always teach you something each and every day.” Even before Dr. Sharif completed an area of focused competency during his residency training in the Clinician Educator program, he was one of the most effective post- graduate teachers at McMaster University. He would routinely come to work with quizzes for trainees to work on and was always there for everyone in their time of need. He has been a member of the resident education committee for four out of his six years of training in multiple residency programs. His advocacy for trainees at a local level led to many great changes for the programs he was a part of, including but not limited to, improvements in academic half-day curriculums, greater social events for trainees and staff to interact, as well as wellness events for the trainees.”
Hayley Augustine – Plastic Surgery
“One of Haley’s greatest strengths is her ability to collaborate in a team setting to ensure everyone is successful, while also taking on a leadership role. Often times it is difficult to be a leader in a small research setting without taking over other’s roles. Haley does this with ease and is able to delegate tasks when necessary for the group, while keeping in mind other’s suggestions and strengths. She is always integrating new ideas from the group and organizing them to create the best possible solution. As a medical student, often times a senior resident can be intimidating, but Haley has always been approachable, helpful and open to all questions. She is a pleasure to work with in this setting, as I always feel well-supported and heard.”
Resident Wellness Champion Award
This award recognizes a resident who is committed to creating, promoting and advocating for a healthy and well-balanced training experience for Learners. Resident wellness is crucial to our mission in PGME to help ensure a safe, supportive and nurturing learning environment for residency education.
Tara Riddell – Psychiatry
“Dr. Riddell is a role model for wellness among our resident group. She is always willing to offer a listening ear, or talk about her own experiences and wellness endeavours in a realistic and genuine way. It comes as no surprise that she was elected as the inaugural Wellness Representative for our resident association, a position which she helped to define and create. As Wellness Representative, Dr. Riddell has collaborated with other resident leaders to plan events like an overnight Wellness Retreat and RESPITE rounds, which are resident-led sessions that run 3-4 times a year. She recognizes the importance of celebrating the small things too, and brings creativity and collaboration to come up with initiatives like gratitude rounds or psychiatry-themed Valentine’s cards.”
Kate Wortley – Physical Medicine & Rehab
“Kate is always on the look-out for opportunities to enhance our training environment. Another project that Kate spearheaded was applying to the Resident Enhancement Fund, a grant supporting projects that enhance resident well-being. She identified the need for improved amenities in our resident lounge, and after polling the residents, she applied and was approved for several items that will improve our working and lounge space.”
Michelle D’Alessandro – Pediatrics
“Dr. D’Alessandro has been dedicated to ensuring mentorship opportunities are available to learners. She herself provided mentorship to junior learners and encouraged a culture of reflective practice, in which she was always readily available for opportunities to debrief and grow from challenging clinical encounters. She is an advocate for a healthy learner experience and training environment. In addition to providing ongoing support to her co-residents, particularly junior learners, she also ensured that resident concerns were taken seriously and addressed promptly.”
Faculty & Staff Awards
Faculty Mentor Award
This award recognizes a faculty member who has demonstrated outstanding advocacy for residents through individual mentorship and exemplary role-modelling of the CanMEDS roles. Mentors can be recognized for their support for resident research, contribution to a positive learning environment, advancing resident wellness and/or professional and personal support.
Anne Niec – Department of Pediatrics
“As female physicians, we could not be more fortunate to have Dr. Anne Niec as a model of a female physician and leader who demonstrates professionalism, collaboration, equity and compassion. We’ve watched the way that Dr. Anne Niec is able to captivate a room and convey her passion and advocate on behalf of the resident body. For example, at a previous resident programmatic committee (RPC) meeting the Chief residents brought up concerns regarding issues with resident well-being. It was discussed for a brief amount of time and then there was a suggestion to move on until Dr. Anne Niec halted the meeting and made it clear that there was no educational issue more important than the one that was raised by the Chief residents. She ensured that the item received the amount of time it needed to come up with solutions and action plans. We are extremely thankful for her support, guidance and dedication. We feel privileged to have the opportunity to learn and work with her.”
Gita Wahi – Department of Pediatrics
“What is remarkable about Dr. Wahi is her ability to support and guide you through a challenging situation, difficult decision, or clinical encounter. She helps to lead you in a direction but equips you with the tools to find the destination on your own. She supports you in finding the answer you are looking for without just telling you what to do and in doing so prepares you for future situations that may be similarly challenging. I can’t count the number of times this past year I found my way to Dr. Wahi’s office to talk about whatever it was I was struggling with, either professionally or personally. Her door was always open, no questions asked. Having a safe space where it was okay to voice my vulnerabilities, worries, and self-doubt allowed me to work through and navigate conflict, grow within my capacity as a leader, build confidence in my capabilities as a future pediatrician, and learn to balance the importance of self-care within the demands of residency training.”
Madan Roy – Department of Pediatrics
“He has always provided a positive learning environment, and taught us the skills necessary to voice, and understand each other’s points of view. He encourages us to consider how our opinions should be based on the evidence available. He emphasizes that we attend multi-disciplinary meetings, fosters a positive environment for us to learn and lead these crucial meetings. I continue to carry these skills with me, especially when I need to do complex meetings in acute care. He continues to sit down with learners over coffee after rounds for discussions around the cases or constructive feedback. These discussions have inspired me not only to think critically about a given scenario or a topic but was also the beginning of leading me towards a career path in evidence based neonatal and pediatric practice.”
Faculty Wellness Champion Award
This award recognizes a faculty member who is committed to creating, promoting and advocating for a healthy and well-balanced training experience for Learners. Resident wellness is crucial to our mission in PGME to help ensure a safe, supportive and nurturing learning environment for residency education.
Andrew Latchman – Department of Pediatrics
“Dr. Latchman defines what it means to be a champion for residents. His open-door policy, enthusiasm for resident led initiatives, and willingness to speak out and advocate on behalf of residents at both an individual and group level has been a driving force to permeate a positive culture of wellness and support within our training program. It is a privilege to be trained by someone like Dr. Latchman, and we cannot think of anyone more deserving of this recognition.”
Program Administrator Award
The Program Administrator is a key individual for the success of a residency program, working in partnership with the Program Director and faculty in ensuring a positive learning environment for residents. Program Administrators are essential for moving residency programs forward in implementing new initiatives in residency education. This award recognizes a Program Administrator who has demonstrated outstanding advocacy for residents and excellence in supporting all aspects of residency education.
Kelly Binkle – Neonatal Perinatal
“Kelly is helpful, caring, resourceful, and happy to offer service no matter the task. She often performs above and beyond and recently offered her expertise and planning skills to navigate a skill search to the point of providing detailed itineraries for several external candidates. Even though this was not required of her, she did so willingly and cheerfully.”