UBC Aboriginal MD Graduates Class of 2017

Aboriginal MD Graduates, Class of 2017: Left to right: Cody Kaskamin, Lauren Taylor, Ellie Parton, Alexander Sheppard, Jennafer Wilson, James Andrew (Aboriginal Student Initiatives Coordinator), Lindsay Wainwright, Benjamin Sheppard. Missing: James Williams, Gabrielle Levin.

May 25, 2017 – This year, the UBC Faculty of Medicine’s Aboriginal MD Admissions program graduated nine students. Like previous years, the graduates were acknowledged at a special celebration at the UBC First Nations Longhouse on May 23rd.

The graduation event, which was attended by families, friends and supporters, saw the newly-minted MDs walk through the Longhouse’s graduation door, increasingly a rite of passage for many Aboriginal graduates from all disciplines.

Related: UBC Aboriginal MD Graduates Class of 2016

Emceed by James Andrew, the program’s Aboriginal Student Initiatives Coordinator, the event included Musqueam Elder Jewel Thomas, Linc Kesler, Director of the First Nations House of Learning, Dr. Shannon McDonald, First Nations Health Authority, and Dr Ben Matthew, Class of 2009. Dr Lindsay Wainwright was the graduating student speaker.

Dr. Wainwright, who goes onto a residency program with the University of Manitoba Plastic Surgery team, says she plans to focus her research on “improving health outcomes for Aboriginal plastic surgery patients.”

This year’s graduating class includes:

  • Dr Cody Kaskamin, Cree, Salt River First Nation, Alberta
  • Dr Gabrielle Levin, Métis, Manitoba
  • Dr Ellie Parton, Kwakwaka’wakw
  • Dr Alexander Sheppard, Cree, Alberta
  • Dr Benjamin Sheppard, Cree, Alberta
  • Dr Lauren Taylor, Métis, BC
  • Dr Lindsay Wainwright, Cree, Ontario
  • Dr James Williams, Kwanlin Dün First Nation, Yukon
  • Dr Jennafer Wilson, Qualipu Mi’kmaq, NB

Related: Video of Ellie Parton’s inspirational address at 2015 health gift announcement at UBC

To date, the faculty has graduated 71 physicians under the Aboriginal MD Admissions program, which far exceeds of its unofficial goal of graduating 50 more Aboriginal MDs by 2020.

Related: UBC Aboriginal MD program meets goal five years ahead of schedule

Page Modified: May 25, 2017

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