About us

Office Location

St. George campus - FitzGerald Building, 150 College Street, Room 121

Mississauga campus - Terrence Donnelly Health Sciences Complex , 3359 Mississauga Road, 2nd Floor

Office hours

Monday to Friday 8:45 a.m. to 5 p.m.



See our vision, mission and values.



Dr. Leslie Nickell


Dr. Leslie Nickell
Associate Dean, Health Professions Student Affairs
MSW (Wilfrid Laurier), MD (McMaster), CCFP

I’m an Associate Professor in the Department of Family & Community Medicine, University of Toronto, and have been on faculty since 1993. As a full-time family physician, I maintained an active practice for more than twenty years at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. In 2013, I joined Bridgepoint Hospital where I’ve been focusing on innovative interprofessional models of care for the complex patient. Throughout my career, I’ve been involved in many aspects of medical education, in both the undergraduate and postgraduate domains. In 2009, I became the Associate Dean of the Office of Health Professions Student Affairs. I am the current national Chair of Student Affairs, in the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada. My academic and clinical interests include medical education and the learning environment, physician/student wellness and resiliency, generalism, interprofessional education and care, chronic disease management and care of the complex elderly.

Arlene Witter
(Interim) Administrative Assistant to the Associate Dean

Coming soon.

Counselling team

Shayna Kulman-Lipsey
Manager of Counselling Services, Personal Counsellor
BA (Toronto), MSW (Toronto), RSW

I’ve been working in the mental health field most of my career and have been with OHPSA since 2011. My approach to personal counselling is based on the wisdom I’ve gained not only from psychotherapeutic training but what I’ve learned from those I’ve worked with. Having personally experienced many transitions in my own life, including living abroad for five years, I’m very sensitive to the numerous transitions health professional students need to adapt to. I work collaboratively with students from a strengths-based model as you work your way through these transitions and take on your new identities as health professionals.

Dr. Jon Novick

Dr. Jon Novick
Career Exploration Faculty Lead, Psychiatrist and Assistant Professor, University of Toronto
BA (Haverford College), MDCM (McGill)

After assisting medical students for many years as the electives coordinator for Psychiatry, I joined the OHPSA team in 2013 as the Career Exploration Faculty Lead. I oversee the Enriching Educational Experience (EEE) Program that helps to ensure that students have fair and equal access to the many shadowing opportunities available in the undergraduate medical program. As a resource for students, faculty and staff, I work to incorporate early career exposure and learning into numerous aspects of the preclerkship experience. I also enjoy my community based private practice in psychiatry and psychoanalysis, and have experience working on both sides of the Canada/US border.

Carol Bisnath

Carol Bisnath
Career Counsellor/Coach
BA (Toronto), MEd (Toronto), Cert. Career Coach

I completed both a BA in English/Political Science and an MA in Education at the University of Toronto. I’m passionate about student engagement and success. My research areas of interest include faculty and resident career mentorship for medical students; career coaching; and assessment tools. Since 2007, as a career counsellor/coach for medical students within OHPSA, I have worked one-on-one with students through the 4-year continuum of your career management activities, ranging from career exploration to specialty decision-making and the residency application process.

Colleen O'Connor
Career Counsellor/Coach

I was delighted to join the OHPSA team in 2017 after several years in community and public sector roles providing career and employment counselling supports to diverse professionals including advisory work with internationally educated physicians and healthcare professionals at HealthForceOntario.  I understand that choosing a specialty is one of the most critical decisions you will face as a medical student. As a resource to students, I offer practical assistance for the exploration of career options as well as coaching to help you optimize opportunities throughout your years of medical education including supporting you through the residency application process.  In support of student success, I  also actively collaborate with students, staff and internal and external networks to develop, implement and deliver a range of customized career management services and events for students.

Nellie Perret

Nellie Perret
Academic Coach
BA (Toronto), MA (Toronto), PhD (Toronto)

I’ve been supporting student learning at the University of Toronto for over thirty years. In my work as an academic coach within OHPSA, I draw on this experience with the certainty that all students are capable of achieving academic excellence: the 'trick' is to adapt current learning strategies — and, where appropriate, to devise new ones — to meet the challenges of a dynamic academic environment. I work collaboratively with students, then, to help you develop and implement individualized learning plans that best serve your unique, and at times protean, needs as learners in the health professions.

Joanne Leo Personal Counsellor

Joanne Leo
Personal Counsellor
BA (York), M.S.W. (Toronto), R.S.W.

I have worked in the mental health field for the past ten years. Before joining the OHPSA counselling team at the University of Toronto, I worked in both clinical and research settings in hospitals, universities and community mental health agencies.  I am passionate about helping others to become more aware and accepting of their thoughts and feelings in order to engender change.  For students, medical school can be a time of significant stress.  You may be experiencing difficulty juggling the academic and professional demands of medicine while remaining healthy.  My approach to counselling is to create a safe space for students to express their challenges while encouraging them to build on their strengths, face their fears, and practice self-compassion.  My hope is to help you manage the unpredictability of life, and move toward your true values to experience meaningful lives and careers.


Lucy Gallo
Personal Counsellor
BSW (Ryerson), MSW (York), RSW

I have worked in the mental health field for fifteen years. As a social worker at Anishnawbe Health and then at Alternatives, The East York Mental Health Counselling Agency, I have provided a range of services to people, including short and long term counselling, advocacy and crisis management. I am presently working at Egale Canada Human Rights Trust where I provide same day crisis counselling for LGBTQ2SI youth. I have also provided individual and group counselling at St. Michael’s Hospital in suicidal studies. I practice a variety of therapeutic modalities including mindfulness, trauma informed counselling, strengths based, and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. My approach to counselling is to build a trusting working relationship that draws on peoples’ strengths and inner resilience.

Bethany Grubb
Counselling Administrator
Honours BA (Brock)

I am a new member to the OHPSA team, but have been working in the administrative field for the last 5 years. A major part of my role is to provide assistance to students who are looking to book appointments with our various counsellors. Additionally, I am involved in event planning and statistics management, as well as meeting the overall needs of the office as a whole. I have a strong interest in health and wellness, and seek to make the student experience as smooth and enjoyable as it can be!

Katie Raymond

Katie Raymond
(on maternity leave) Counselling Administrator
BA (New Brunswick)

I’ve worked as a part of the OHPSA team as counselling administrator since 2013. I help to support our career counsellors, personal counsellors and the academic coach by maintaining their schedules, booking student appointments, managing statistics and preparing data reports. I have worked at the University of Toronto since 2009 and more specifically within student services since 2011. I’m especially interested in promoting wellness and the student experience.

Service learning and diversity outreach

Ike Okafor



Ike Okafor
Senior Officer, Service Learning and Diversity Outreach
BA (Toronto)

I work in OHPSA as the Senior Officer, Service Learning and Diversity Outreach. A central focus of my work at the University of Toronto has been working collaboratively with university divisions, student groups and community organizations to promote access to post-secondary education, particularly the University of Toronto. I also coordinate health advocacy experiences and observerships for medical students in inner-city and bilingual/French settings, advise student groups and help support numerous charitable activities. In my spare time, I enjoy traveling, sports and baking macarons.


La Toya Dennie  

La Toya Dennie
Outreach Coordinator
BA (Toronto)

I’ve had the pleasure of working with OHPSA doing outreach and student life activities since 2012. I'm deeply committed to having the University of Toronto reflect the diversity we experience in Toronto, and as an outreach coordinator, I’m helping to change the perceptions of our university’s accessibility for students from marginalized communities. I’m passionate about the opportunity that I have both to develop students who are socially responsible and to create a more inclusive environment for current and future members of the University of Toronto community. I feel honoured to do this work every day because I understand the importance of community and mentorship, and I want to positively influence the lives of students.




Mark Wlodarski  

Mark Wlodarski
Student Support Administrator - Mississauga campus
Business Administration, Marketing Management diploma (Sheridan College)

I’ve worked within the post-secondary environment since 2005 and within the University of Toronto community since 2010. In my previous job at Sheridan College, I engaged with learners on a behavioural level while managing the campus bar. This experience motivated me to pursue working with learners to support their academic growth and development in a post-secondary setting. As an administrative professional, my role here is to assist and guide learners through the process of accessing resources. I also plan events and generally try to make your time at the University of Toronto as enjoyable as possible! Most people have come to know me as the fun-loving sports enthusiast.

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