Making 150 count

Jennifer Parraga, BA'93

When the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) began planning its 150th anniversary, they wanted to support the future of medicine. And because it was such a significant milestone in the CMA’s history, they partnered with the CMA Foundation in order to make a significant difference in students’ lives.  

“We really wanted to find a way to support medical students, recognize their leadership and celebrate their passion,” said Alison Forestell, Executive Director, CMA Foundation.

As part of the 150th celebration it was determined that a series of awards and bursaries for medical students across Canada would be part of their plan. The financial rewards could provide much needed monetary support, as well as celebrate the leadership that so many students demonstrate through their involvement at their schools and in provincial and national organizations.

And so began the initiative which involved making impactful donations to all 17 medical schools across Canada with a long term goal of touching the lives of more than 170 students.  

Beginning in 2018, Schulich Medicine students are eligible to receive award or bursary funding, made possible with a donation of $117,500 in the next five years through annual donations of $23,500 from the CMA Foundation, as part of their overall financial commitment across the country.

The award, valued at $15,000, will be available in each of the next five academic years and will be presented annually to a student based on their academic achievement, who has demonstrated an ability to exemplify the values of professionalism including honesty and integrity, respect, responsibility and accountability, commitment to self-improvement and collaboration.

Students with demonstrated financial need are eligible to receive the bursary, which is valued at $8,500. The bursary will be offered annually to students for the next five academic years.

The future of the profession rests on the students entering medical school and the CMA Foundation believes that this key legacy initiative will support medical students and contribute to a strong and meaningful future for the medical community.

Forestell describes today’s medical students as outstanding individuals, who exemplify the values of the profession.

“It’s quite humbling to meet these students,” she said. “They are bright, passionate people, who are focused on the patient and on Canada’s health care system, and we really wanted to contribute to their future and the future of the profession. We’re excited to watch these students evolve into fantastic physicians,” Forestell added.

Donors continue to make a difference

This past year, several other donors have provided support for awards and bursaries to benefit medical students. Thank you to all donors who have chosen to invest in medical education.

The Medicine Class of 1967 established the Meds Class of ’67 Bursary. This past year, the Class raised $26,000 to bring the fund to more than $220,000. It will support two annual bursaries of $3,300 each.   

The Medicine Class of 1992 donated $30,000 in honour of their 25th reunion. They have established one student award to be offered annually to a student demonstrating financial need and academic achievement. The award is valued at $1,200.

Dr. James Purvis, MD’64, established five awards at $5,000 each for medical students at Schulich Medicine – Windsor Campus. The first of these awards will be presented during the 2018/19 academic year.

Dr. Elizabeth Mueller, MD’77, donated $50,000 in honour of her father to establish a student award. The award will be presented each year for the next five years and is valued at $10,000. The Jakob Mueller Award in medicine supports a first year medical student with financial needs.