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Life-changing preview

Mini-Med School experience confirms student's career choice

By Virginia Middleton

When Victoria Januszkiewicz, now a second-year medical student, registered for Mini-Med School in 2014, she didn’t realize it would lead her on a path to becoming a physician.

Established in February 2004, Mini-Med School aims to forge stronger ties with the community by sharing the expertise and knowledge of medical educators. The program is organized and managed by the Faculty of Medicine’s Office of Professional Development.

From left are Gillian Rickets, Victoria Ridgley-Januszkiewicz and Kylie Everard during the 2016 medical student white coat ceremony.
Photo: Jennifer Armstrong

Open to all ages

The school offers the opportunity to get a glimpse of what it is like to be a medical student first hand.

“Mini-Med School participants range from high school students to seniors and everyone in between,” said Dr. Vernon Curran, associate dean of educational development, Faculty of Medicine. “Not only will participants experience lectures and discussions similar to those in the medical school curriculum, they will also be immersed in a community-based learning environment.”

In person and online learning options

Anyone outside of the St. John’s metropolitan area will have the option to log in remotely to each session by webinar. They will be able to see the presentations, hear discussions and submit questions or comments live.

The Faculty of Medicine on the St. John’s campus
Photo: John Crowell

Ms. Januszkiewicz participated in Mini-Med School twice. Her first experience was in 2014 while living in Fredericton, N.B. In 2015, while working on her master’s program in clinical epidemiology in St. John’s, she was able to participate in person.

“I found the webinar option for Mini-Med School engaging, interactive and convenient since I wasn’t living in St. John’s but was still deciding on whether or not I wanted to study medicine,” she said. “It was my first exposure to medical education and it helped confirm that I wanted to pursue a career in health care.”

2018 registration

Registration for the 2018 Mini-Med School session is now open.

Sessions will run for five weeks from April 4-May 9 on Wednesday evenings and will be held in the Faculty of Medicine’s lecture theatres on the St. John’s campus. At the final session, graduates receive a certificate of completion.

Ms. Januszkiewicz says that both experiences, in person and by webinar, had many benefits and overall the program provided a sense of community that fostered learning.

“Being able to interact with other participants as well as the lecturers really enriched the experience. Funny enough, some of the lecturers from my time in Mini-Med School are now faculty who are teaching me here at medical school.”

For more information about Mini-Med School and how to register for this year’s program, visit the Office of Professional Development’s website.

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