Bayview Glen is the only Toronto-based school to have participated in a co-op experience at Mount Sinai Hospital this past summer. Ten BVG students were placed in four different units at the downtown hospital.
The Oncology Clinic is where Grade 11 student Faraaz Quereshy spent the month of July. Faraaz shares some of the highlights of his placement in his own words:
What made you want to take the Cooperative Education course?
The reason I chose to take the Cooperative Education course was the opportunity to have a placement in a professional work environment and have a first-hand look at different potential career paths.
What drew you to the specific industry in the placement you chose?
Throughout my academic career, I have always wanted to explore multiple career paths, with one of them being healthcare. When hearing about this opportunity, I thought that it could be a great way to learn more about the health system and understand if it would be a potential career path for me in the future.
How would you describe the application preparation process, prior to your interview?
The application preparation process for the co-op program was one that was supported by Ms. Dybala (Academic and Career Counsellor at BVG) in tailoring an experience for all of us. We were able to discuss with her our ambitions for the program and our interests for the program. I felt confidently prepared through our classes and having the ability to learn about the different opportunities that were offered through the program.
What has surprised you most about your placement?
When reflecting on my experience at Mount Sinai, one thing that I found interesting during my placement was the many different skills needed within a healthcare job. When working with Dr. Razak, a sarcoma specialist at Mount Sinai, I understood that a doctor uses skills such as effective communication and interpersonal skills that allow patients to feel like they are in a welcoming environment when visiting the hospital. Dr. Razak demonstrated this by creating relationships with his patients that extended beyond discussing healthcare. He would take the time to hear about their day or discuss common interests, allowing patients to feel that they were meeting with a friend while visiting the hospital. When working in the Oncology clinic, the environment always made me feel that I was part of a second family that always looks out for each other.
Could you provide 2 or 3 examples of things you have learned that have impacted you?
One reflection that I would take away from this experience was some of the goals that I want to continue to pursue in the future. Although healthcare may not be a career path that I want to pursue in the future, I still do believe I want to be in a profession that is in service to others, and always giving back to my community.
Another reflection that I would take away from this experience would be the different skills that are needed within any profession. Without strong interpersonal skills as well as strong communication skills, someone would flounder in a job in medicine as it requires doctors to be able to communicate well with patients, as well as have the ability to work with a team to create excellence in care.
Has this experience influenced your outlook (career, future)? If so, in what ways?
After having the opportunity to work at Mount Sinai, I do not believe that I would choose to pursue a career in healthcare. Although I found the workplace environment to be interesting, especially with the work of specialists such as Dr. Razak, I believe that my personal interests would shift my career path to something in business or law.
This story is part of a series on the Bayview Glen Summer Co-op Education experience 2023.