Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree?
I have a longstanding interest in translating research findings into clinical practice. I undertook specific MD/PhD training at the University of Toronto with this in mind, and have continued my path to becoming a clinician-scientist through my Research Track Residency in Psychiatry at UBC. Currently, I am a resident in the Clinician Investigator Program at UBC. I focus on immune and endocrinologic aspects of depression and anxiety.
Why did you decide to study at UBC?
The Clinician Investigator Program allows residents to broaden their research training internationally. I will use my time in the Clinician Investigator Program to undertake a postdoctoral fellowship at King's College London in the United Kingdom. King's College is a world centre of excellence in the study of psychoneuroimmunology and I look to bolster my training in this exciting discipline during my fellowship.
What is it specifically, that your program offers, that attracted you?
The ability to seek research training at an international centre of excellence.
What was the best surprise about UBC or life in Vancouver?
The accessibility of the outdoors.
What aspect of your graduate program do you enjoy the most or are looking forward to with the greatest curiosity?
Getting back into the laboratory and working with cells.
What do you see as your biggest challenge(s) in your future career?
Balancing the competing time interests of clinical work and research.
How do you feel your program is preparing you for those challenges?
The Clinician Investigator Program is specifically designed to teach clinicians how to undertake research, and to balance that commitment to research with their clinical obligations.
What aspects of your life or career before now have best prepared you for your UBC graduate program?
The MD/PhD program at the University of Toronto. Many of the transferable skills that I use today, even in clinical work, I learned during my training there.
What do you like to do for fun or relaxation?
In the winters I ski. In the summers I hike in the mountains. Being outdoors recharges me.
What advice do you have for new graduate students?
Be patient. Research is about breaking new ground and pushing boundaries. Sometimes you're the first to go somewhere new and that can be frustrating!