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UOIT hosts third-annual Faculty of Health Sciences Graduate Gala

Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) graduate students and their supervisors at the third-annual FHS Graduate Gala.
Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) graduate students and their supervisors at the third-annual FHS Graduate Gala.

Faculty members and graduates from the University of Ontario Institute of Technology’s (UOIT) Master of Health Sciences (MHSc) program gathered on November 13 to celebrate the accomplishments of Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) graduate students who completed their degrees in 2013.

"Some of the graduates do not defend their theses until August, which means they miss that year’s June graduation and have to wait until the following June to attend the UOIT graduation ceremony," explained Kathy Smith, Research Development Assistant and gala Planning Committee member. "The gala gives grad students and their supervisors an opportunity to share their experiences in a relaxed and fun atmosphere."

Supervisors presented graduates with mock degrees that contain humorous made-up titles both the graduate and the supervisor have agreed upon. Along with their supervisors, graduates participated in a fun-filled exchange of roast, toast, congratulations and words of thanks. Graduates also added their colour thumbprints, representing their stream of Community Health, Kinesiology or Health Informatics, to the framed graduation tree wall hanging.

Dr. Manon Lemonde, Graduate Program Director, organized the fall-themed event and served as Master of Ceremonies. Meagan O'Neill, Graduate/Research Co-ordinator, was also on the Planning Committee and Michelle Sutcliffe, Program Assistant, Health Science and Graduate Programs, provided valuable administrative support.

"Congratulations to Manon and the Planning Committee on a very special evening," said Dr. Ellen Vogel, Dean, FHS. "The students' toasts to their Research Supervisors and committee members were poignant, memorable and very rewarding. I would like to thank everyone who contributed to the success of this annual event."

A number of UOIT MHSc alumni are pursuing doctoral degrees: two at the University of Toronto, one at Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario and one at the University of Waterloo in Ontario.

Jeavana Sritharan, a PhD student at the University of Toronto’s Institute of Medical Science and a Student Research Associate at the Occupational Cancer Research Centre at Cancer Care Ontario in Toronto, graduated from UOIT in 2012 with a MHSc in Community Health.

"UOIT’s Health Sciences graduate program was integral to the start of my career as a health researcher, and has provided me with countless unexpected opportunities," said Sritharan, who helped organize the gala in 2012. "The passion of, and support from Health Sciences staff and faculty is truly invaluable."