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Anne Steacy Medicine & Global Health Stream

The courses in this stream examine some of the most challenging issues in medical research and public health. From stem cells and transplantation, to the development of new drugs and treatments, new therapies come with costs that are both financial and social. There are enormous challenges associated with all aspects of health care delivery, from the policies required to establish and maintain the Canadian health care system to the challenges associated with making health care available throughout the world.

The Anne Steacy Medicine & Global Health (MGH) stream is targeted towards students in both the Arts and the Life Sciences. This stream is an ideal fit for students with an interest in public health who are looking to gain a broader understanding of the impact that progress in the Health Sciences is having on society.

This stream is sponsored by Anne Steacy and is complemented by the Faculty of Medicine and the Institute for Health Policy, Management and Evaluation and the Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy.

STREAM REQUIREMENTS

Students in the Biomedical Health stream enroll in two seminar credits in their first year as part of the typical 5.0 credit load in first year. These two courses include: TRN135Y1: Science and Social Choice and TRN136Y1: Canadian Health Policy in the Global Context. Each of these courses amounts to 1.0 FCE and will continue throughout the fall and winter semesters. To learn more about each course, click below

AFTER TRINITY ONE

Students who complete the Medicine Global Health stream are well-equipped to pursue further studies in related academic disciplines as they have gained skills in critically analyzing science research/policy and reading/writing academic papers. Students may apply concepts and skills learned in the MGH stream during upper year studies of their degree.

The Medicine & Global Health stream’s partner, Health Studies, offers an undergraduate major that is likely to be of interest to students. Some students will graduate with a major or specialist degree from one of the Basic Science Departments of the Faculty of Medicine, or from the Human Biology Program in the Faculty of Arts & Science. Others pursue programs in Global Health, Public Policy, Bioethics or International Relations. Many combine majors from both groups.

STREAM MENTORS

Your stream mentors will support you throughout the academic year by hosting workshops and activities to assist you with course assessments and to facilitate community building. They will be your first point of contact should you have any academic concerns or questions about student life! Meet your stream mentors below!

Nicholas Damiano

Program(s) of Study: Biochemistry (Major), Fundamental Genetics and Its Applications (Major), Immunology (Minor)
Hometown:  Vaughan, ON
College: Trinity College

Nicholas’ experience in the Biomedical Health Program was an irreplaceable one that enriched his first year of university and allowed him to explore his interests in the science field. He felt that the program opened him up to the world of research and provided him with valuable knowledge and skills that he will hold onto forever. Nicholas also works as a tutor, volunteers at a peer support line, and is a senior peer mentor for the FLC program in his spare time. When he is not in school, Nicholas can be found playing video games, listening to music or watching the newest movie. As a mentor, Nicholas hopes to help incoming students on their journey through TrinOne and their first year at UofT. He encourages students to reach out if they have questions about anything or even if they need someone to talk to.

Eugene Seo

Program(s) of Study: Immunology (Specialist) and Global Health (Major)
Hometown: Victoria, BC/Vancouver, BC
College: Trinity College

As a member of the Medicine and Global Medicine program last year, Eugene has had an enriched first-year experience learning with like-minded individuals and engaging in discussions about relevant topics in medicine. The program not only allowed Eugene to enjoy a warm sense of community but also allowed him to develop his critical thinking skills and understand a greater capacity of perspective on modern topics.

Outside of school work, Eugene enjoys playing music, going on walks, meeting up with friends for casual sports, and watching movies. Currently, he is volunteering at a local hospital to play piano for long-term care patients, training to be a text crisis support volunteer, and continuing music theory lessons to complete his ARCT. Going into the new year, he’s also co-leading a Registered Study Group again, acting as a member of the Arts and Science Undergraduate Sciences Curriculum Committee. If you’re on Trinity residence this year, you might also see him as an orientation leader for the college! Eugene is excited to meet everyone in person this year. He is open to answering and supporting students throughout their first-year experience!

 

ALUMNI REFLECTIONS

Hear from graduates of the Trinity One program – Medicine & Global Health stream! 

Ayesha Shakeel and Abdula Maher | 2022

June 22, 2022

Ayesha Shakeel Abdula Maher

Ayesha Shakeel (Left), and Abdula Maher (right) completed the Medicine & Global Health stream in 2019.

Congratulations to the class of 2022! I had the pleasure of interviewing Ayesha Shakeel and Abdula Maher on their experience with the Trinity One Medicine and Global Health Stream. They kindly shared how Trinity One had inspired them to pursue their academic and career interests.

Ayesha and Abdula expressed that Trinity One cultivated their academic and interpersonal skills. Additionally, they were able to explore their interests through their courses and connect with their professors and peers. Ayesha says that “my first interactions with my professors significantly shaped my program choices. Hearing my professor speak passionately about immunotherapy and the latest research in the field was incredibly inspiring. As such, I find that the drive and passion are important aspects of why I choose my academic path.” Similarly, Abdula shares that “my experience at Trinity One influenced me to pursue the Pathobiology program and engage in cancer research, which I did later on. Moreover, Trinity One allowed me to approach academic interest from a global health perspective and think about how we can translate scientific findings into accessible medical therapy available to everyone.”

With the COVID-19 pandemic hitting in the midst of their undergrad, they have had a great share of challenges traversing through university. Transitioning to online classes was difficult and isolating, but the alumni expressed gratitude for their experience as it pushed them to explore campus more and connect with their peers.

Throughout their journey, they have learned many valuable lessons and hope to impart them to future students of UofT. Ayesha encourages students to pursue mentorship and connect with their professors. She finds mentorships to be significant in providing fortifying experiences for undergrad students. Moreover, she emphasizes that you should “always ask for things because the worst thing that [could] happen is a no.” Abdula stresses that “the possibilities are endless [at UofT], whether it is something you are pursuing in your academic, professional or personal goals […] you will face many challenges along your journey through UofT, but these experiences will foster an appreciation for [all] the ups and downs.” 

As the conversation came to a conclusion, Ayesha and Abdula shared their plans for the future. Ayesha had completed her Global Health major and double minors in immunology and education, and will be starting medical school in the following term at Queens University. Abdula plans on continuing his research on the drivers of acute myeloid leukaemia resistance to therapy at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. 

Thank you to Ayesha and Abdula for making the time to share their experiences with Trinity One and their plans for the future. We wish you the best in all your future endeavors!

Written by: Yang Jing Zheng, Trinity One Program Assistant, Environment & Sustainability ‘22

Dante Wong | 2021

June 23, 2021

Dante Wong MGHThis past school year has been one like no other and students have had to learn to adapt to a completely new learning style. The uncertainty of the situation we are currently in has only added an additional challenge for students. We recognize this year has been very difficult and so we want to take the time to celebrate our graduates of the class of 2021. 

This past week I was able to speak with one of the 2021 graduates Dante Wong, who studied Immunology and Global Health. Dante, who completed the MGH stream, mentioned how participating in Trinity One influenced the trajectory of his program choice. “A lot of what I learned through the course ended up changing the direction of my degree as it was really interesting to see that epidemiology can extend to so many different societal factors.” Dante expanded by discussing how going into university he thought that it was pure science that had the biggest impact on healthcare and helping others but he learned there was more than just the biological aspects but also the societal aspects as well. As a result, he decided to pursue a degree that allowed him to explore both of these aspects simultaneously. 

Dante also continued to be a part of the Trinity One program in his second year as a mentor. On this topic he mentioned how he appreciated having upper year students who had a similar school experience to him and that being able to ask these mentors questions about not only Trinity One but university in general was super helpful so he wanted to provide that for others.

We later got onto the topic of how different Trin One courses could be from other first year courses. Dante specifically enjoyed the smaller class sizes in Trinity One as it gave him the ability to develop a familiarity with his professor that didn’t exist in other first year courses. Furthermore, Dante really appreciated how the seminar style of Trin One helped him prepare for his upper year courses and how Trinity One courses “stepped up from just the fundamentals and allowed for more significant discussions between students.” He felt that Trinity One offered a quality of learning that you couldn’t find elsewhere in first-year. 

On the topic of advice for incoming students Dante advises students to take advantage of the smaller class size and to try and find students who have similar interests to you as this can sometimes be harder in your larger classes. He found that having that sense of community helped him to develop many skills including study habits that were specific for university. Additionally, Dante learned that the amount of effort you put in was proportional to the grades that you received not only for Trin One but other courses as well.

Dante’s experience in Trinity One highlights how unique of a program it can be and how it can completely shape a student’s university experience. This summer Dante is working at SickKids helping out with a research project related to neonatal vitamin deficiencies. He will be applying for Master’s programs later this year and plans to translate his passion for science communication and sustainability into a career in pediatric healthcare.

We at Trinity one would like to congratulate Dante Wong along with all the other students who are graduating this year. We wish them the best with everything in the future!

Written by: Nicholas Damiano, Trinity One Program Assistant, Biomedical Health ’20

Ayesha Shakeel | 2019

Ayesha ShakeelWelcome to Classroom 213: An Introduction to TRN136

In a modestly-sized classroom on the second floor of the Gerald Larkin Building, you will be introduced to an expanse of thought, perspective and brilliance. Enter Room 213 and you will witness the mosaic of individual experience: diversity erupting within and without each student and the outcome is incredible. Before you know it, the faces of the strangers in the room will belong to the most dialed contacts in your phone. The blackboard will not be brimming with mathematical equations, scientific jargon or diagrams of cellular division – a few words introducing the topic of discussion for the day will be neatly chalked and this practice will last until the very last day of TrinOne, each week the topics shuffling from one to the next.

Room 213 houses TRN136 – Canadian Health Policy in the Global Context, one of the two courses that make up the Anne Steacy Medicine & Global Health (MGH) stream in the Trinity One Program. It is a course that will challenge your perspectives on the policies, systems, and practices that facilitate healthcare in our societies. Engaging with your professor and peers, you will spend time debating the efficacy and efficiency of global and national initiatives in addressing health challenges such as universal health care, anti-microbial drug resistance, maternal & child health, Indigenous health, HIV AIDS etcetera.

If you are a natural sciences student, this course will shift the lens with which you traditionally interpret medical research, its outcomes and applications for our most vulnerable populations. The difficult conversations taking place at international stages like the United Nations and the World Health Organization are critically analyzed and for two hours of class, you will transcend the four walls of the University and become leaders in these facets of public policy.

If you come from a social science background, this stream is a beautiful interdigitation of science, policy and as I choose to view it, humanity. It sheds light on the value of frontline human experience in making executive decisions that affect vulnerable communities and addresses how the insulation of centralized institutions result in ill-fitting verdicts for populations without a voice.

This course will awaken (or give rise) to your drive for social justice in healthcare: the conception of medical research, aid and treatment are often well-studied topics but their appropriate delivery to the individuals, families and communities that critically require them is the focal point of this course. In my experience, the MGH stream functioned in the capacity of directing my attention to novel fields of research and initiatives that I had previously left unexplored. This profoundly impacted the direction of my academic pathway: my Programs of Study for the remainder of my degree were selected by taking my experiences within the stream into consideration. The products of this stream – perhaps new interests or simply personal development – are likely to influence the rest of your trajectory at the University of Toronto, most likely in pleasantly unpredictable ways.

Amna Zulfigar | 2019

Amna Zulfigar

What are you studying now?

A couple of months before beginning my first year at university, I decided to apply for the Margaret MacMillian Trinity One Health Science and Society Stream. Once I got in, it just so happened that it was also the first class of my undergraduate degree. I was pleasantly surprised to be in an environment of incredibly motivated, insightful people. There was a depth and dimension to our small-group discussions that I couldn’t find in any introductory biology or philosophy class. It was one of the most academically enriching experiences I’ve had; I was taught to critically engage in a wide variety of topics, and this diversity shaped the trajectory of my remaining university years, where I specialized in molecular genetics and minored in philosophy. Each year, I’ve had my heart pull me in so many different directions, from philosophy to science, research to medical school, mathematics to art. It’s difficult, but I realized that I didn’t need all the answers. I just had to try my best. Alongside the mentorship provided by professors, I earnestly explored my passions until I found equilibrium. Now, in the fall of this year, I will be heading to Oxford university to defend a Master’s in neuroscience.

Contact Us:

Susan He
Program Coordinator, Margaret MacMillan Trinity One
trinityone@trinity.utoronto.ca

 

Have a question? Ask a mentor!