Queen's University - Obstetrics and Gynecology - Kingston
We are a program of close-knit, open-minded residents and faculty, providing a warm and enjoyable interpersonal and professional experience.
Very accessible faculty, most of whom have offices on the same floor close to each other — great for networking!
Excellent mentoring and career counselling: early recognition and support of residents in difficulty; individual attention in all rotations; close, personal relationship between residents and staff. Attending staff are very supportive and committed to resident learning and success.
Excellent faculty-to-trainee ratio (15 residents, 17 staff) and lack of clinical fellows in MFM, Urogyne, Gyne Onc provides immense opportunity for hands-on learning.
Strong experience with, and leadership in, Competency-based Medical Education (CBME): this will be our 5th year which means all our residents will be CBME residents. Queen’s OBGYN faculty were leaders in CBD development at the Royal College.
Cohesive, functional, responsive program with an excellent reputation & track record!
95% of activities are located at a single site (Kingston General Hospital), with some outpatient OR and some specialty clinics occurring at Hotel Dieu Hospital and Lennox & Addington County General Hospital (in Napanee — 40 mins from downtown Kingston).
Labour & Delivery, NICU, post-op ward and outpatient clinics are all located on a single floor, making it very efficient to circulate around.
Unique transgender clinic; multi-disciplinary Women's Bleeding Disorder clinic.
Early surgical exposure. Early autonomous experience as on-call resident as there is one resident on-call at night in-hospital (with back up second on-call): you get to be in the thick of it early, right away in your first year! But don’t worry, staff is only a door away and very supportive and responsive.
Calls: mole system Monday-Fridays: nights only, no days. On weekends, no consecutive 24h call!
Strong subspecialty exposure; strong MIS program; robotic surgery available in gynecology oncology.
Fantastic simulation opportunities!
Protected academic half day (staff takes all your pagers during these 3 hours!)
Generous support for conferences (contingent on achievement of research milestones).
Multiple educational rounds (4-5 hours per week, in addition to academic half day).
Monthly Journal Clubs.
Strong examination preparation: yearly formative OSCE and yearly formal OSCE run as close as possible to Royal College format; participation in CREOG and the National Canadian Examination (formally called APOG) preparatory examinations; once R5, weekly oral exams, plus Departmental support for R5 to attend the Canadian OBGYN Review Program review course.
Strong support for independent research project: in house statistician/methodologist; many faculty with MSc in Clinical Epidemiology. We have some phenomenal CIHR-funding researchers at Queen’s in MFM, REI, and MIS, including Women’s Health Clinical Mentorship Grant for projects pairing our residents to superb mentors.
All residents attend the Queen's University Research Course, supported by the Department.
Expectation to complete two research projects: one with collection of original data, and a quality assurance project. Both can receive generous support to attend national meetings for dissemination.
Opportunity to complete a Master Degree of one's choice through the Clinical Investigator Program (CIP).
Family-friendly city with a great waterfront and bustling tourism; great water sports and cycling! Plenty of restaurants, cafés, and bars, serving excellent and diverse food and drink!
Well-established sports, music, and arts scene, including festivals, shows, and concerts (check out Leon’s Centre Stadium, the Tett Centre and the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, among other great venues).
Access to places of prayer of many creeds: mosque, synagogue, most Christian denominations (Catholic, Protestants, Orthodox etc). Furthermore, Queen’s University has an active indigenous community found in the Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre as well as an Office of Indigenous Initiatives.
Short commuting times (most walk or cycle to work and school); lower cost of living; within easy reach of Montreal, Ottawa, and Toronto.
Close proximity to numerous beautiful leisure destinations (Prince Edward County/Sandbanks Provincial Park – and their wines and beaches! Thousand Islands, Rideau Canal – a designated UNESCO world heritage centre!)
Enjoy the great outdoors! Hiking (Rock Dunder), sailing and stand-up paddling (Lake Ontario), canoeing and kayaking, and camping in Provincial Parks (Frontenac Provincial Park, Bon Echo Provincial Park, Charleston Lake Provincial Park among others).
When asking a referee for a reference letter, ask them to support candidate characteristics with concrete examples demonstrating each quality. Qualities we are interested in hearing about are communication, compassion, technical and surgical skills, and clinical reasoning and judgement.
For personal letters, we are interested in your motivation in the field, our site, and your personal characteristics indicating suitability to this field with concrete examples from your experience. Consider including an explanation or narrative of specific strengths you have that would be an asset in OBGYN with concrete examples. If you have self-identified as Black, Indigenous, please include a section or paragraph on your connectiveness with that community, past, present, and future. If you have identified as having low socio-economic background, you have the option of describing how these circumstances influenced your path. Word limit for personal letters is 1200 words.
Items we neither require nor want:
- PDFs of publications
- PDFs of certificates/diplomas/degrees
Do you have a formal mentorship program?
No, but we find mentors very easily at Queen's given the small number of staff and residents who work very closely together over five years. Often your research supervisor that you pair with in first year becomes a mentor, as do the staff in the areas of OB/GYN that you find yourself particularly interested in (whether subspecialty or generalists who simply have areas of common clinical interest). Also, there is a close mentor relationship that develops between the Junior OB resident (4 blocks in first year) and the Senior OB resident, as you work 12-hour days together 5 days a week for 4 months! Your Senior OB teaches you everything from your first C-section to just knowing the ropes as a resident.
Are there MIS opportunities at Queen's?
MIS opportunities abound! By the end of Junior GYN you will have had several opportunities to perform a TLHBSO as primary surgeon with staff assist. We also get lots of hysteroscopy on Junior GYN and in Brockville. On GYN Oncology you will have the opportunity to assist robotic surgery as well.
What mechanisms are there for feedback, and is the program responsive?
We have a biannual resident retreat with the Residency Program Committee where we discuss any difficulties residents are experiencing and how they can be overcome. The program is very responsive and at the next retreat we review the 'leftovers' from the previous retreat to make sure they were addressed. Throughout the year feedback can also be channeled through the Residency Program Committee (3 resident reps — 2 voting) or can be brought to the Program Director, who is always available to chat!
What is your call schedule like?
We do a night float system that we call ‘mole week’ — Mon to Thurs inclusive from 5pm-7:15am. On weekends we split our shifts so everyone gets a bit of a weekend:
- Fri night + Sun day (pre-call Friday afternoon)
- Sat day + Sun night
- Sat night
The residents really love this arrangement! We don’t do graduated call per se (i.e. decreasing the amount of call as you get more senior) but the senior residents do more second call, which is home call with GYN Oncology rounding on weekends, so they spend less time in hospital than primary call.