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Double win

New MD graduate receives not one, but two, prestigious awards

Student Life | Alumni Spotlight

By Michelle Osmond

Dr. Travis Pickett (MD’20) is the recipient of the prestigious Memorial University Chancellor’s Undergraduate Award and the Fry Family Foundation Undergrad Leadership Award.

Dr. Travis Pickett

Dr. Pickett was selected as Memorial’s most outstanding undergraduate student leader.

“Winning the Chancellor’s Undergraduate Award along with the Fry Family Foundation Award is truly an honour,” said Dr. Pickett, who is currently in Ottawa completing residency in otolaryngology (head and neck surgery).

“However, it is really a reflection of not only the work I have done, but also the teams around me. Nothing would have been possible without them, and I feel lucky to have been surrounded by hard-working and motivated individuals on a daily basis.”

Dr. Pickett also says his team members motivate him to keep pushing forward, as he hopes he motivates them. He also says “nothing would have been possible” to accomplish without his support systems.

Impressive CV

Dr. Pickett is one of the founding members of PolyUnity, which creates and distributes 3D-printed medical simulations. The company got its start in the Faculty of Medicine as MUNMED 3D.

PolyUnity was among a few companies that won the Mel Woodword Cup for its innovative business ideas in 2019.

“It is really a reflection of not only the work I have done, but also the teams around me.” — Dr. Travis Pickett

Most recently, PolyUnity helped to alleviate the personal protective equipment shortage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic by making its own after signing on as an innovation partner with Eastern Health through its Living Labs program.

In 2018 Dr. Pickett was awarded the Jim Glionna Canadian Medical Hall of Fame Award.

Originally from Corner Brook, N.L., Mr. Pickett grew up with a passion for science and music. He completed his honours in biochemistry at Memorial before being accepted to the doctor of medicine program. While in medical school, he was the founder and curator of the Faculty of Medicine’s inaugural live art gallery, showcasing nearly 50 works of art from medical students, graduate students, faculty and staff.

Award background

The Chancellor’s Undergraduate Award is given at Memorial’s convocation ceremonies to the student of the graduating class who has demonstrated the greatest leadership contribution to undergraduate student life and other areas of the community during his or her university years. It is awarded by the Senate Committee on Undergraduate Scholarships, Bursaries and Awards based on a recommendation from the president in consultation with the dean of Student Life.

The Fry Family Foundation (FFF) is a private, U.S. based organization, founded and funded by Darryl and Marlene Fry, who were born and educated in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. The Fry Family Foundation has put a great emphasis on developing leaders and that focus has become a core value of the foundation. It has been particularly demonstrated in Newfoundland and Labrador, where the foundation has already granted more than 1,000 scholarships. The scholarship is valued at $5,000.

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