Recognizing Teaching Excellence

March 2, 2015 at 4:00 pm

Teachers and students are the lifeblood of any university.

Last week, that relationship was celebrated at our fifth annual Teacher Recognition and MMSA Teaching Awards dinner, a wonderful event that gives students the opportunity to recognize the outstanding teachers in the College of Medicine. We heard from members of the Manitoba Medical Students’ Association (MMSA) Teaching Awards Committee as they spoke about how faculty members go above and beyond to mentor their students, role modelling and preparing them to do their best as our province’s future health care professionals.


(L-R) P.G. Forest and Dean Postl

Med III student Phoebe Thiessen, one of the event organizers and award presenters, spoke to how “our teachers’ passion for medicine is what motivates and inspires us students.”

Med IV students Hoang Nguyen and Adrian Stacy also testified about the influence of teachers. “We look to you and we can learn to be sympathetic and empathetic doctors,” said Nguyen. “Your teaching will prepare us for residency.”

In his keynote address, P.G. Forest, PhD, Director of the John Hopkins Institute for Health and Social Policy and a former chief scientist for Health Canada, delivered a timely speech on providing a Canadian perspective on the United States’ Obamacare, or the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

“I am not arguing for American-style health care in Canada,” Forest said. “I just think it is helpful to look at what is going on in the USA at this moment.”

Forest stated that the ACA has transformed the United States into a unique testing ground for health policy and that there may be lessons to be derived from the American approach.

“We would be fools not to try to learn from this colossal experiment,” he said, citing the ceaseless drive for innovation in the American model. “The US health care system goes through permanent transformations, reorganizations and re-engineering. The American system is incredibly flexible. We should also make room for innovation. What are we scared of?”

Our students will be the trailblazers who will innovate and shape the future of health care in our country and I thank all of our teachers and faculty members for imparting their knowledge and experience to the next generation of medical leaders.

What parallels and differences to you see between the Canadian and American health care systems?

Click here to learn more about the dinner and this year’s award winners.

Dr. Forest’s keynote address.