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The duties of the Regional Directors are as follows:

  1. Represents their respective regions and chairs all regional meetings of their constituents. Regional designations are as follows: Western, Ontario, Atlantic, and Quebec*. 

  2. Act as a liaison between the association and other regional/provincial organizations.

  3. Support various portfolios of the Leadership Circle as needed.

Candidate: Breezy beaudry

Introduction

My name is Breezy Beaudry and I am a fourth year medical student at the Northern Ontario School of  Medicine. I am of Metis Cree and mixed European ancestry. I was born and raised in Kelowna, BC, the unceded traditional territory of the Syilx Okanagan Peoples. I was fortunate to grow up with multiple generations of family within a fifteen minute drive of my home. Slightly less traditionally, it is my mom, a strong female Indigenous Leader, who has provided the space for my Grandmother, a residential school survivor, and I to learn and celebrate our Indigenous Ancestry. I have been raised to walk in two worlds, taking on leadership roles among my Indigenous and non-Indigenous colleagues over the years. I am passionate about a holistic framework to health and feel honoured to be in the field of medicine. Some of my favourite hobbies include hiking, canoeing, backcountry camping, running, biking, skiing, backyard farming and reading. My partner and I live with our dog Luna, cat Blitz and our excessive amount of house plants in the city of Thunder Bay, Ontario. I look forward to working with such a strong group of current and future Indigenous Leaders in Medicine.

Experience

After completing Highschool in Kelowna BC, I participated in a one year Rotary Youth Exchange to France. I then attended the University of Victoria where I received a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology Coop Degree. Following university, I worked as an administrative assistant at the Esquimalt Navy Base prior to being accepted to Medical School at the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. I was actually my unit’s wellness coordinator when I was working on base as well. 

During my first two years of medical school I was the Wellness Student rep for my class, attending regular meetings, coordinating a variety of wellness related initiatives and advocating for my classmates who raised questions or concerns surrounding wellness, medical school culture and burnout. I have also played a mentorship/leadership role among my Indigenous classmates in both official and unofficial roles. Most notably, I have completed terms as a student representative on NOSM’s Indigenous Reference Group, as the student representative on the Indigenous Admissions Subcomittee, was selected to attend the Biennial Indigenous Health Conference (2020) and have presented at numerous events including Niijii mentorship night and Indigenous Affairs Admissions information nights. I am especially proud of my most recent Service Learning Project where I worked with Mino M’shki-ki Indigenous Health Team in Temiskaming Shores to create a Medicine Wheel-Likert Scale self assessment tool to help clients create and measure their Holistic health based on individual goals and the directions of the Medicine Wheel. I am very passionate about creating culturally relevant and safe tools for Indigenous clients, community members and learners to use in the pursuit of improved holistic health.

Goals

My goals include:

 

  • Helping IMSAC further define the role of Regional Director Ontario. Including the creation of clear 1, 3 and 5 year goals in both development and growth of the position. 

  • To support other members of the leadership circle.

  • To Act as liaison between regional and national organizations IMSAC hopes to partner with. 

  • Being in a foundation year, I believe my previous experience in administration will help create an organized foundation for future leadership circle members to build on. 

  • Finally, hosting events of learning and sharing, where our non-Indigenous Medical colleagues can attend, ask questions and learn more about Indigenous Health in Canada is crucial. At NOSM, all student’s have a mandatory four week Community placement with an Indigenous community in Northern Ontario during their first year of study as well as other course work to learn more about Indigenous Health prior to future practice. I believe this could be a piece we work together on with the Director of Advocacy and representation to help others learn more about the impact of the social determinants of health and how to provide culturally safe care in Canada.

Speech

Candidate: Stephanie Marr

Introduction

I am Anishinawbe from Lac Seul First Nation in Northern Ontario but I was born and raised in Brantford, ON. I am a second year student at McMaster University (Waterloo campus) and can't wait to see where my medical journey takes me in giving back to my community. Just as an example, for the past few months, I have been fortunate enough to be hired as a vaccinator and offer culturally-competent care for the Indigenous community in the Waterloo region. My family is also super important to me--my mom and sister are my rock. I enjoy painting, cooking and watching movies with my family.

Experience

I currently sit as the Vice-President of Indigenous Health on the McMaster Medical Student Council and have thoroughly enjoyed my time advocating for Indigenous Health here at Mac. It has been a great experience connecting with Indigenous peers and physicians to make medical school a better place for Indigenous learners. During my undergrad, I was also quite involved in the Indigenous Students Association at the University of Waterloo, where I helped plan events, do community outreach and mentor Indigenous youth during summer camps. I was also selected for the Indigenous Summer Research Scholars program at McMaster where I assisted in a project on Indigenous knowledge translation in health research. The research I did there showed me how important communicating and connecting with Indigenous communities is in order to improve health--a fundamental principle that can be applied to many situations and often helps keep me grounded.

Goals

As the Regional Director of Ontario, I hope to connect with the other Regional Directors to facilitate learning, sharing and teaching of knowledge. There is a lot to learn about how to best support each other, how to communicate effectively and how to help our communities. I also look forward to connecting with Indigenous medical students across Ontario to learn from them and to advocate for their needs. Building relations between students is so important for wellbeing and future networking, so I hope to somehow form a group where medical students in Ontario can connect with each other. I can tell now from my experience on my Students Council, that support for current medical students is lacking and so working with the Director of Student Affairs on this will be a priority for me.

Speech

Candidate: JOSHA RAFAEL

Introduction

I have a number of experiences, both past and present, which would be an asset to this role. As a past president of the McMaster Indigenous Health Movement, as well as conference chair of the McMaster Indigenous Health Conference, I have a plethora of experience in leadership, community organizing, and fostering community connection. A key aspect of my work was planning events, workshops, and initiatives that would serve the McMaster Indigenous community, and as such, I became well-acquainted with members of the community and their unique needs. For example, through a survey that I created for the community, I found out that Indigenous languages were a top priority for many of the Indigenous students. As such, I founded and organized the first McMaster Indigenous Languages Week, which involved collaboration with Indigenous students, local Indigenous health organizations, and the Six Nations language program. In my current role as a Co-Chair of the Indigenous Health Interest Group at McMaster University, I collaborate with various Ontario-based Indigenous health organizations to put on events for the McMaster Medical community, as well as promote community amongst Indigenous medical students. Mentorship has also been an important part of my life, starting in undergrad and continuing into my medical degree. I have been an Indigenous mentor with the Indigenous Students Health Sciences center for the past 4 years, and it has allowed me to foster further connections with this community, and the next generation of Indigenous students in medicine.

Experience

I have a number of experiences, both past and present, which would be an asset to this role. As a past president of the McMaster Indigenous Health Movement, as well as conference chair of the McMaster Indigenous Health Conference, I have a plethora of experience in leadership, community organizing, and fostering community connection. A key aspect of my work was planning events, workshops, and initiatives that would serve the McMaster Indigenous community, and as such, I became well-acquainted with members of the community and their unique needs. For example, through a survey that I created for the community, I found out that Indigenous languages were a top priority for many of the Indigenous students. As such, I founded and organized the first McMaster Indigenous Languages Week, which involved collaboration with Indigenous students, local Indigenous health organizations, and the Six Nations language program. In my current role as a Co-Chair of the Indigenous Health Interest Group at McMaster University, I collaborate with various Ontario-based Indigenous health organizations to put on events for the McMaster Medical community, as well as foster community amongst Indigenous medical students. Mentorship has also been an important part of my life, starting in undergrad and continuing into my medical degree. I have been an Indigenous mentor with the Indigenous Students Health Sciences center for the past 4 years, and it has allowed me to foster further connections with this community, and the next generation of Indigenous students in medicine.

Goals

I have a number of goals which I would want to fulfill in my role. One of my top priorities would be to foster community and connection amongst Indigenous medical students in Ontario. Currently there are no streamlined communication channels to connect Indigenous medical students, and as far as I am aware, there have been no events aimed at bringing together Indigenous medical students across different Ontario medical schools. I would create a platform (most likely a Facebook group) for students, and ensure that the page stays up-to-date. I would also plan a number of events and advertise them to various Indigenous medical student groups in Ontario in order to connect the community. Covid-permitting, an in-person meeting could also be arranged. Secondly, after becoming better-acquainted with the other Indigenous medical student groups, I would also want to send out a survey to assess the needs and priorities of the students, which would serve as a guide for future initiatives. Finally, I would act as a liaison between Indigenous medical students in Ontario and the other chairs of IMSAC across the country, and I would prioritize keeping students informed about the work that is being done by IMSAC. Overall, as fellow Indigenous students and future colleagues, fostering a sense of community amongst those in the region is extremely important. Likewise, understanding the needs and priorities of the group, and making sure they are informed about the broader activities of IMSAC is also a primary goal.

Speech

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