COVID-19 Update #15 - April 9 - Faculty wellbeing program, Family Medicine graduation reception, new research program opportunity, graduate studies tuition and funding information

This is the 15th update to the Schulich Medicine & Dentistry community.

This update includes information about:

  1. Schulich Wellbeing Program

  2. Summer research opportunities for undergraduate BMSc/Neuroscience students

  3. Family Medicine resident graduation reception cancelled

  4. Admission requirements for MD and DDS programs

  5. Graduate student tuition and funding

  6. Resources available from Compute Canada

You can now access all these updates online. You can also continue to access the Travel, Education and Visitor Policy, the COVID-19 Travel Reimbursement Policy and the status of our education and research programs online.

Schulich Wellbeing Program

  • The Schulich Wellbeing Program was launched today.
  • Based on a Peers for Peers model, the Program will provide support for clinical and dentistry faculty in London and Windsor.
  • Drs. Terri Paul, Bill McCauley and Andrea Lum are the faculty leads for the Program. As Interim Assistant Dean, Faculty Equity Wellbeing, Dr. Paul will oversee the areas of wellness, equity, harassment/intimidation and mentorship.
  • Dr. Bill McCauley is the Assistant Dean, Professional Affairs and his portfolio includes the areas of professional behaviour, contracts, conflicts, promotion and ARCs.
  • Dr. Lum will provide oversight to this Program, as well as all aspects of Faculty Affairs in her role as Vice Dean.
  • The wellbeing team also includes 17 representatives from all clinical departments, as well as Schulich Dentistry and the Schulich Medicine - Windsor Campus.
  • The departmental leads will be the first contact for faculty and they will navigate pathways for further assistance and access to needed resources for their peers, as well as enhancing the flow of communication between faculty and the School.
  • Read more about the Wellbeing Program and the departmental leads.

Western Undergraduate Summer Research Internship (USRI) Program

  • The Western Undergraduate Summer Research Internship Program was recently announced. Summer internships will provide an undergraduate student (BMSc/Neuroscience) a minimum of $5,625 ($4,500 from Western, $1,125 from the supervisor) to conduct a research project. For this competition, only remote projects (i.e. student works on the project from home) will be considered.
  • Preference will be given to projects supporting students currently completing their third year in the BMSc and Neuroscience programs.
  • Deadline for submissions is April 21, with the anticipated decisions to be released on April 28.
  • Learn more.

Family Medicine resident graduation reception cancelled

  • Family Medicine has determined that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they will not be able to host an in-person event in 2020.
  • Family Medicine acknowledges and is deeply grateful for the work that residents are doing as frontline health care providers, and regret that they cannot celebrate the achievements of residents.
  • Please stay tuned for further communication regarding nomination instructions for Family Medicine's annual awards. The Department looks forward to recognizing award winners.
  • Due to lack of access to formal certificate paper and printing, it has been determined that for the interim, only electronic certificates will be issued. These certificates provide residents who have completed training with a formal document to present as proof of completion of training. Once everyone is back on site working, hard copies of the certificates, which will be available for pick up from the Department of Family Medicine office.
  • Read more online.

Admission requirements for MD and DDS programs

  • Schulich Medicine & Dentistry’s Admissions team understands that along with all of the uncertainty of the pandemic, the COVID-19 situation provides added concern for students about the effects this could have on their current or future applications to the Doctor of Medicine (MD) Program and Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) Program.
  • The Admissions team is carefully deliberating with the Admissions Committee and putting together a plan. This plan will address current applicants and assessment of the current academic year as it relates to admission conditions around GPA, degree completion and potentially registration requirements.
  • You can read more about the MD Program and the DDS Program on the Admissions website.

Graduate student tuition and funding

The following message was shared by the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (SGPS):

  • SGPS recognizes the extreme pressures many of you are facing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and we have heard your concerns and suggestions for how we can best support you. We sincerely appreciate your patience as we have been working with the Provost, Deans and Associate Deans to develop a strategy to assist with your immediate financial challenges.
  • Funding commitments made to graduate students in their funding support packages will be honoured, regardless of whether or not you are able to progress in your scholarly activities and/or duties due to the current disruption.
  • Similar to other Canadian universities, Western is not in a position to waive tuition for the summer term. We have made several changes to summer term deadlines to lessen the impact of some of your urgent financial challenges.
  • The graduate summer term tuition due date of May 7 has been extended to June 1.
  • Some ancillary fees will not be charged to graduate students for the summer, including those related to Campus Recreation, Western Foot Patrol and Off-Campus Housing. For details, please visit the Office of the Registrar's website.
  • The purpose of Thesis Defense Only (TDO) status is to allow a student who: a) has completed all program requirements (including preliminary thesis submission); and b) has not been able to defend their thesis before the end of term, to register in the subsequent term without paying tuition fees. The deadline for the preliminary thesis submission for TDO status in the summer term has been extended from April 30 to May 29. Students who intend to meet this deadline for TDO status must email a completed Intent to Submit Thesis by End of Term for Thesis Defense Only Status Consideration form by email to Kimi Maruoka by May 25 and must upload their exam-ready thesis to the Scholarship@Western repository before midnight May 29.
  • Working in partnership, SGPS, the Provost and Faculties have created a one-time, needs-based 2020 Graduate Student Summer Term Bursary. This bursary will help enable continuing full-time PhD students and continuing full-time research Master's students, to progress in their research programs without disruption despite the impact of COVID-19.
  • Timeline:
    1. May 1: Applications open.
    2. May 15: Applications close at 4:00 p.m.
    3. May 18 - 28: Applications are processed.
    4. May 29: Students notified and funds deposited into students' accounts.
  • Eligibility includes:
    1. Continuing full-time PhD students within their funding eligible period - PhD students whose summer term funding package is less than $6,500 may be eligible for a maximum amount equal to the difference between $6,500 and the total value of their summer term funding.
    2. Continuing full-time PhD students beyond their eligible funding period - PhD students beyond their eligible funding period can apply for up to a maximum of $6,500.
    3. Continuing full-time research Master’s students - Canadian and Permanent Resident research Master's students whose summer term funding package is less than $6,500 may be eligible for a maximum of $3,000; International research Master's students whose summer term funding package is less than $6,500 may be eligible for a maximum of $6,000.
  • For further details and to apply, please visit the Graduate Student Summer Term Bursary webpage.
  • Graduate Bursary Assistance is available for Master's students in all eligible professional graduate programs. Bursaries are non-repayable, taxable grants issued to students who demonstrate financial need. For further details and to apply, please visit the Graduate Bursary Assistance webpage.

Resources available from Compute Canada

  • Compute Canada Federation (CCF) has resources and support available for COVID-19 projects. These include:
    1. providing access to cloud resources, high-performance clusters, storage or boosting job priority;
    2. consulting on high-performance computing (HPC), data analysis, machine learning, and visualization;
    3. and connecting researchers to Canadian scientists from other research areas and institutions to further collaborations.
  • To access these resources, email with “COVID-19” in the subject line.
  • Compute Canada understands that users with Resource Allocation Competition allocations may choose to repurpose their allocations for COVID-19 research. They are asked to reach out to the organization using the email address provided above, to inform them of these plans.

Please send ALL communication related to the COVID-19 pandemic that you need to be shared with the Schulich Medicine & Dentistry community for faculty, staff, students, learners, trainees and fellows to Jennifer Parraga. The information will be compiled and shared with the School.

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