An unexpected path

Dr. Jody Stasko loved being a nurse. Working at several hospitals in Toronto, she provided care to support women’s health and cardiac health. She also worked as a sexual assault examiner, with street-youth and with needle exchange programs.

“Nursing gave me such a broad perspective on health care,” Dr. Stasko said. “There’s so much to do in nursing, and I just loved.”

After three years in the profession, she began to feel the urge to go back to school. She wondered about a master’s program, respiratory therapy or physiotherapy programs. She also considered medicine and was happy to be accepted to the Northern Ontario School of Medicine.

Dr. Stasko graduated from medicine in 2010, and then moved to Kingston for her residency in emergency medicine.

Born and raised in Windsor, Dr. Stasko never expected to return to her hometown to pursue her career. By the time she completed her residency, she was married and had a young daughter. The pull to be closer to family was strong and so she moved home.

Today, she serves as an emergency trauma physician, trauma team leader, and a critical associate in the intensive care unit at Windsor Regional Hospital. Despite her busy schedule, Dr. Stasko, who is an adjunct professor with the Schulich Medicine – Windsor Campus, engages regularly with medical students and residents in the emergency room, through electives and observerships. She also presents lectures, teaches small groups, the Trauma Team Course and Emergency Course.

Together with Dr. Laura Price, Dr. Stasko also co-ordinates the second-year emergency medicine week. The week prepares students who are about to start clerkship and acquaints them with the basic principals of emergency medicine, while adding in topics such as trauma and toxicology and offers hands on simulation and CPR.

 “I love it. Teaching really keeps me on my toes,” said Dr. Stasko. “I find it to be a different kind of challenge, to impart my knowledge to learners who vary from first-year medical students to senior residents.”

Dr. Stasko is grateful to her students for continuously challenging her to think about new ways to teach, to engage, enlighten, assess, support and mentor.

“I want to be a better teacher and a better mentor,” she said. “Students all learn at different rates and in different ways. I’m constantly learning from students because they are all so different, and they have different learning styles, needs, strengths and weaknesses.”

Happily settled in Windsor, Dr. Stasko and her young family take full advantage of all the city has to offer including biking around the city, swimming at the YMCA, and walking their dog in the many parks. With three of her four siblings and her parents close by, there are plenty of opportunities for family dinners and summer barbeques.

Dr. Stasko is proud to be a part of the academic and health care community in Windsor and believes the Schulich Medicine – Windsor Campus has helped to provide greater access to health care for community members.