Words of Gratitude

Apr 30, 2020
Author: 
MD Classes of 2T0, 2T1, 2T2 and 2T3

chalk messages on the sidewalk.

The community at University of Toronto has displayed teamwork, kindness, and support to its members time and time again. The comforts in light of events during 2020 have been no exception. Students in the faculty of medicine at University of Toronto want to thank all of the staff members that have stepped up to support us through these challenging times. All faculty members are greatly appreciated, from administration to OHPSA to technical support. We acknowledge that everyone is struggling right now, and regardless of that, you have been working tirelessly to support us. Your kindness, mindfulness and empathy is boundless. We have put together this book of personal thanks from our medical students for the entire faculty of medicine. We hope you see how much you mean to us. 

Words are certainly not enough to express our gratitude for how responsive, dynamic, and supportive you've been during these times. We learn about being flexible in responding to external pressures, but you've all taken that to a whole new level. Thank you for being brilliant examples of the sort of leadership we are supposed to embody now, and in the future! Please stay safe, stay well, and hopefully we can all reconvene again soon!

I decided that I would keep this message nice and short, as I have only 2 feelings that I would like to convey to the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto at this time; gratitude and comfort.

Thank you so much Dr. Law, Dr. Houston, Dr. Pignatiello and all other faculty leaders and staff for your steadfast dedication and commitment to student well-being and our educational goals. I can’t fathom how challenging it must be to balance clinical duties and other life responsibilities on top of everything else. I honestly have nothing but praise for the timely and adaptive response the faculty provided for our education and personal endeavours under the (extremely) extraordinary circumstances. I feel very reassured having such a strong faculty looking out for us – and also on the COVID frontlines of hospitals/outpatient care, research, and advocacy initiatives. Thank you!

Thank you for all your support and hard work in these unprecedented circumstances! I'm truly impressed by the faculty's rapid and comprehensive response to optimize our learning despite the outbreak. I truly cannot fathom the speed at which the faculty were able to pick up and create a completely online curriculum for their students. I am so impressed by how quick and flawlessly many things changed and how much accommodation was given knowing the varying situations of the student body. I know that this was not an easy transition, and was met with lots of feedback (especially negative at the start) but there is a huge body of students that are very happy and impressed with everything that happened and are so grateful to be U of T students as a result! THANK YOU SO MUCH!

Zoom Call with MD studetntMedical students continuing their education online, while respecting distancing practices.

Thank you so much for all of the work that you have been doing to ensure that we are able to continue with our medical education during this challenging time. I cannot imagine how difficult it must be to balance a complete rearrangement of our curriculum on such a short notice with your own clinical duties, which have also been turned upside down, as well as your own health and that of your families. I am so appreciative of all of your efforts and of your dedication to try to accommodate the needs of your students. Thank you so, so much, and I hope that you and your families are doing well all things considered.

Thank you for everything you do! You inspire us MD students to be selfless and advocate for better societies for all. We stand in solidarity for you, we support you, and we are so proud to have such incredibly leaders setting a prime example at U of T!

Thank you for the incredible efforts you have been pouring into both your clinical duties and those towards medical learners. Changing the entire landscape of a medical curriculum while working tirelessly to save lives and fight COVID-19 is an example we all hope to one day emulate. As our faculty at U of T, we could not be more proud to learn from those on the front line who have fully dedicated themselves to improving the fields of medicine and protecting our communities. We could not be more grateful.

Thank you for your commitment to making our learning a priority during these challenging times. Balancing your clinical duties while transitioning the curriculum to online platforms and continuing to supplement our learning needs with creative strategies is truly remarkable. Thank you!

Dear faculty, you have done an excellent job transitioning our curriculum online, especially amazing given your clinical loads and the uncertainty you must all be facing. Thank you so much for your care and effort.

Masked Statues outside of Mount Sinai Hospital.Masked Statues outside of Mount Sinai Hospital. Thank you for doing your very best as both clinicians and as educators! At this challenging time, you role model many qualities I aspire to have as a future physician. I wish you lots of strength and safety to get through this crisis and return to calmer times!

I am so appreciative of how caring the faculty is for us students. The curriculum continuing forward is one of the only things giving me direction these days, preventing me from being anxious and keeping me focused on the hope for the future. With every going on, having to be at the front lines as healthcare workers and continuing to support us with our education, it really is so admirable what you do. It is something that I look up to. Thank you.

All of you have dedicated so much time and energy into helping your students succeed. In my eyes, you have all gone above and beyond your job descriptions. Your efforts have not gone unnoticed, and we appreciate all that you have done.

I would like to extend my deepest gratitude and appreciation to all those in the University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine. These unimaginable and, often, distressing times have had a profound impact on students’ lives, and those in the Faculty have done everything in their power to try and make this situation more manageable. I want to assure you that your efforts and hard work have not gone unnoticed. Your kindness, understanding, and leadership have been a source of inspiration and hope for many of us. Thank you for everything that you do. I hope nothing but the best for you and your loved ones – please stay safe and healthy!

It blows my mind how quickly you have been able to make such big changes to the curriculum and structure of the program. I am so appreciative that you have been able to do this and provide equally as much support and transparency with the students of the program as there was before. Keep it up. I knew I chose the right school after experiencing how everything has been handled with COVID-19 interruptions. Faculty was able to maintain high standards for our learning that makes us one of the best medical schools in Canada, but also maintained a human touch and has been so understanding and quick to respond to feedback and concerns from students. I know that many of our faculty have multiple responsibilities and are also personally affected by this pandemic, but I still feel so supported and cared for despite being physically distant from peers and faculty. I'm so thankful.

Thank you to the amazing faculty members for wearing all of their hats (&PPE!) so well, especially at this time. Thank you for adapting and responding so quickly for your students, and for powering our healthcare system and taking care of our communities. You are all very inspirational. Keep doing what you’re doing. Sending good thoughts to you all!

Dear faculty, I cannot begin to describe what a phenomenal job you all have done for us during this time of hardship. Even though everything at the moment appears to be uncertain, your genuine concern for the well-being of your students has been notably consistent, as you have continued to listen to our voices and help us implement the changes we have advocated for. Thank you so much for all of your hard work.

The challenges brought on by the pandemic impact everyone every day. I am so grateful that in the face of adversity and change, you have stepped up and supported students despite your own lives probably being a whirlwind. Special shoutout to Dr. Houston for her weekly videos; they always make me smile even though the subject matter is serious. I feel as if I have gotten to know faculty better through these changes and my respect has only grown. Thank you for all you do and for being someone I can look up to.

Thank-you for your stellar response to our student needs during this time. I recognize that it is tough for everyone, and deeply appreciate you.

Thank you for your hard work during this extremely difficult time. Please know that the students at U of T are thinking of you and appreciate you! We hope you stay safe and well!

Torontonians measure distancing in the only way they know how – geese!Torontonians measure distancing in the only way they know how – geese! Thank you for all of the work you've put into the Foundations curriculum, especially in the last few weeks. I've been so appreciative of how quickly Faculty has responded to student concerns and am immensely grateful for all the ways the program has been accommodating. Thank you, also, for working so hard on the frontlines! I am so proud to be a student at UofT Med.

Thank you so much for your tireless efforts in making sure our education can proceed as smoothly as possible! It is very much appreciated. I cannot begin to imagine the personal sacrifices you have had to make in these past few weeks. Thank you for your selflessness, leadership, compassion and resilience during these difficult times. Stay strong and safe.

We can see how hard you are trying, and we can see how difficult being pulled in 8 different directions is. Thank you so much!

We are grateful everything you are doing for us, during these unprecedented and challenging time for our healthcare systems. You make us proud to be UofT medical students.

Thank you so much for all your hard work! Your commitment to our education and wellbeing has not been left unnoticed. As a student who is currently on the west coast, I am especially touched by the time accommodation that has been made to our exams. It might seem like a small gesture, but it is an incredibly thoughtful one, and has helped me feel valued as part of the U of T community even when I'm on the opposite side of the country. Please keep up the amazing work, but most importantly, take good care of yourselves.

I came from a very small university and I was initially quite fearful of leaving my undergrad to come to U of T - I grew anxious at the thought of being on such a large campus and working with faculty who did not know my name. However, I was proven wrong on the first day of school and I continue to realize how dedicated the U of T medicine faculty are. I always know that my education is valued and prioritized, and that community and fellowship are important tenants that keep us together. Thank you for your diligent efforts to ease our transition and for being leaders outside of our school, as well.

The busiest Toronto streets empty – a rare sight. The busiest Toronto streets empty – a rare sight. Thank you to all the Faculty members and staff who helped ease our transition to purely remote learning an overall smooth one. While necessity made this an abrupt change, I greatly appreciate your hard work and understanding to make this transition as seamless as possible in such a short time, while making accommodations for students who are having more difficulty adjusting to the new circumstances. We realize that this is not an easy task and you are doing this all while also being on the frontlines of patient care, and we are truly grateful for it. Hope you all stay safe and well!

Thank you so much for all of your work over the past four years in creating an amazing educational experience! As the class that began medical school with the new Foundations curriculum and ended with the COVID 19 pandemic, I really appreciate all of your hard work in facilitating smooth transitions during changes (both expected and unexpected), your dedication in ensuring a high-quality educational experience while ensuring safety, your openness to student feedback, and your support of student-led initiatives. I have learned many incredible lessons throughout these past four years that I know I will take forward with me into my career.

Thank you again for your hard work and dedication to our learning! Thank you for all your hard work to make our educational experience during COVID-19 as smooth as possible. I know you are all busy, but we really appreciate all the efforts. You are all valuable role models for us. I hope you are able to still take care of yourself.

We signed up to complete a difficult education in medicine, and we're now doing that in interesting times. Since March break there has a huge amount of work and reformatting done by the faculty. Each person has individual circumstances to deal with, and that's understandable. The faculty adapted to the situation where they could and listened to any student feedback where it was actually justified. I can't imagine all the work going on behind the scenes to keep four years of students learning, deal with application interviews, perform clinical work, and take care of your own personal lives. I'm not alone when I say it's truly appreciated.

Thank you for your tireless dedication to both your patients and students. It is easy to be a good leader when things are going well, but a sign of true leadership is continued dedication in times of adversity. You are rolemodels for us students, and in the future we hope to be able to exhibit the same level of care and commitment that you are currently showing. Thank you for everything you do for us and the community at large today and everyday. Wishing you all the best and praying for your continued safety and well-being.

Students share supplies for COVID-19 initiatives while keeping distance in interesting ways…by lowering supplies from their balcony.Students share supplies for COVID-19 initiatives while keeping distance in interesting ways…by lowering supplies from their balcony. Thank you for your time and effort in shifting our curriculum to make it possible to continue our training during these trying times.

Thank you for all your hard work both on the front line and behind the scenes supporting us as students during these challenging times. We greatly appreciate you!

I am so grateful to be at U of T and be surrounded by such amazing faculty who are not only revolutionizing medicine with their research and their clinical care, but reaching out to medical learners to see how they can serve us better!

Thank you so much for all of the hard work you are doing for the Toronto community and for us as medical students. I feel truly cared for by the faculty of this program. For example, I wrote my first ME from home this week and I was so grateful for the ability to wear headphones. My partner was attending a Zoom work meeting in the other room of our apartment and our kitten was crying because he had been placed in the bathroom while I wrote the test, but I could still focus! Thank you for accommodating imperfect test-writing conditions; this tiny detail made all the difference to me. I cannot stress enough how grateful I feel to be at UofT medicine with all of the clear communication, responsiveness to our concerns, and genuine care you have shown us.

Thank you. I know there must be many days where you tackle dilemmas, make sacrifices and still wonder what the outcome will be. But it really comes through that you care, and that's what I'm most thankful for.

Thank you all so much for doing your best to support our education and wellness during this difficult time! I can't even imagine how stressful all of this must be for you and your families. I really appreciate being able to continue learning with as few disruptions as possible. Looking forward to all of this being over and getting back into the classroom and clerkship. All the best!

Tens of thousands of community members making handmade masks to help fight the PPE crisis.Tens of thousands of community members making handmade masks to help fight the PPE crisis. Hey, thank you for all the support :) I think it is not that difficult to be caring and attentive once everything is in order. What really matters is to care when there are a million different barriers to do so. The way our faculty created a new form of studying in a matter of weeks (if not days), how responsive you have been, and the constant communications despite all your other responsibilities/concerns, just goes to show how caring you all are. As future care-providers, I truly learned from such altruism. I hope I will not let you down and give back once I have the expertise and the power.

Dear Faculty, THANK YOU doesn't begin to encompass the level of gratefulness and admiration I have for all of you during this crazy, unexpected time. Thank you for how quick you were to respond and adapt the curriculum so that we could stay home. Thank you for caring about us enough to remove us from all community settings so that we could stay safe and socially distance properly. Thank you for taking the time to ensure that our needs are met, even though you are also adapting to an ever-changing clinical environment/practice, managing family situations, and so many other things that we are probably not aware of. Thank you for how understanding you are of our struggles. Although they are small in comparison to many outside of our medical student community, you are consistently empathetic and accommodating of us, while also maintaining the integrity and quality of our education. There is probably so much more that we could and should thank you for, but I hope that this small note will bring a smile to your day in the midst of these seemingly dark times. I'll end with one last THANK YOU! You are appreciated!

I would like to express my sincerest gratitude for all the work the faculty is doing both in caring for their patients and in caring for us, the students, throughout this challenging time. Seeing the response of front line healthcare workers as well as faculty has truly given me a new perspective on this humbling career journey that I’ve embarked on. Truly, thank you.

Thank you! You are true leaders and role models in everything you do. You are absolutely inspiring. I am forever grateful for the opportunity to learn from you. Your continued support of our learning in addition to your clinical practice makes me so proud to be a medical student at UofT.

Dozens of restaurants throughout the city providing meals to healthcare providers and others in need.Dozens of restaurants throughout the city providing meals to healthcare providers and others in need. Dear MD Faculty, thank you for your continued efforts in making our program as seamless as possible during these unprecedented times. As a learner, I feel very well-taken care of and can see how highly prioritized we are. You all have families and loved ones and are under intense clinical (and emotional) demand; yet, you work tirelessly to ensure our learning is not compromised. I cannot begin to convey my appreciation towards all of you and simply hope to honour your names and dedication with my contributions as a clinician one day.

Hello Faculty of Medicine! I just wanted to say how much I appreciate all of the work you all have been doing in order to better accommodate us medical students and to ensure we are still getting a quality education. I cannot imagine how much stress and effort it has been for all of you, especially considering many of you are also physicians. On top of that, it is sometimes easy to forget that many of you have our own families and other obligations outside of medicine and academia, and the fact you are able to juggle all of these responsibilities under these uncertain times is simply admirable. I have always thought incredibly highly of the program, and the patience you have towards us learners are instrumental. You all have been amazing exemplars of professionalism and ideal physicians, and I hope you all know we all are very proud to be medical students at U of T because of the faculty. Stay safe, be well and hope to see you all very soon. Many thanks and appreciation.

Thank you to all of the faculty staff and admin for taking the time to answer all our questions and make accommodations for students all the while keeping your own heads afloat in these torrential times. We hope the best for all of you and hope to see everyone once this pandemic is over.

Thank you all to our education leaders and staff who are quickly working to adjust our curriculum to the new COVID situation. We know and appreciate that this is a very challenging time and that you must be working extremely hard to make this work. Teaching medical school is difficult enough as is. There has been some back and forth about accommodations for students and I just wanted to express that I've been very impressed with the faculty about their messaging and receptiveness to feedback. Thank you so much and stay safe.

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