Jun 16, 2023

Two exceptional students selected for MHSc Award

Congratulations to Shandon Ashitei and Kevin Lee

Each year, the Department of Physiology issues the MHSc in Medical Physiology Award to honour the accomplishments of a student in the program who has achieved excellence not only in PSL4010Y (Mentored Literature Review in Physiology) but also across their entire MHSc program (excluding the practicum). The award supports the costs of publishing their mentored literature review in an appropriate journal.   

This year the competition was so close that the MHSc Advisory Committee (who assesses the applications) gave the award to two deserving students, Shandon Ashitei and Kevin Lee. Read on for details on their winning papers and join us in congratulating both of these exceptional students.

Headshot of MHSc Award winner, Shandon Ashitei
I view this award as a shared triumph - a testament to the inspiring mentorship I received and the collective spirit of the MHSc in Medical Physiology program. — Shandon Ashitei

"My literature review examines the integrative pathophysiology of sickle cell anemia and highlights the need for more accessible treatments," Ashitei explained. "It suggests that combining therapies like oxygen supplementation and positive airway pressure could better address the oxygen delivery deficiencies caused by sickle cell anemia and the added burden of sleep apnea, potentially reducing health complications and improving patient outcomes."

"Winning the MHSc Award is a milestone for me, marking the end of an academic journey deeply enriched by mentorship and collaboration," he said. "The experience of developing the Mentored Literature Review under the guidance of my exceptional mentor, Dr. Greg Hare, has not only honed my research and writing skills but also prepared me to contribute meaningfully to the realm of scientific literature. Importantly, this work is an achievement that extends beyond academia, paving the way for a successful future career in the medical industry."

Kevin Lee explained that his literature review "aims to further identify the optimal timing of initiating invasive breathing support for patients with lung conditions. The review identified various physiological parameters and thresholds that can inform both the timing and type of breathing support for these patients." 

Lee, whose literature review was written with the mentorship of Dr. Ewan Goligher, went on to say: "I am honoured to be a recipient of this award, which is the culmination of a truly unique and valuable program. Through both the core courses and electives, I was able to further advance my knowledge of physiology, while also developing unique skills and further advancing myself as a professional."

Photo of MHSc in Medical Physiology candidate, Kevin Lee
The literature review and practicum placement are invaluable experiential opportunities that allowed me to apply my knowledge and skills to advance an area of medical research and hopefully benefit the health of patients in the future. — Kevin Lee