Faces of U of T Medicine: Mujeeb Duranai
Mujeeb Duranai is an MSc student in the Department of Physical Therapy at the Faculty of Medicine and will be convocating on November 9, 2016. Mujeeb is a Gordon Cressy Student Leadership Award winner and the valedictorian for the class of 2016.
He is one of the many U of T students who will cross the stage at Convocation Hall to receive their degrees during ceremonies this November. Share your convocation memories with us using the hashtag #UofTGrad16.
How has your time in the program prepared you to become a physical therapist?
The various teaching methods incorporated into the program at the University of Toronto was well suited to my learning style. The program uses several teaching approaches to cater to different learning styles, which I believe to be a huge benefit of the program. In addition to lectures, the program incorporates regular hands-on labs, small group case discussions, clinical days and placements, seminars, and tutorials. From a student perspective, it can be challenging to translate a case on paper to a real life scenario. As I progressed through the program, this gap was bridged via the structure and organization of the curriculum – we would learn about certain conditions, practise assessment and treatment on classmates the next day, and then have the opportunity to put it all together in a clinical setting. A particularly valuable asset was having clinicians from the community come in and assist us in every clinical skills lab that we had. This ensured the mentor-to-student ratio was favourable, which went a long way for me with respect to receiving feedback on my skills and being able to ask questions in the moment. This helped me feel as comfortable and confident as possible with the new skills I learned.
What will you remember most about your time in the program?
The relationships built over the course of the program will always be remembered. One of the first things I noticed about the faculty and staff in the program was how they treated us like colleagues – how the power dynamic that existed between students and faculty/staff in my previous experiences as a student no longer existed the moment I started the program. Our opinions were regularly sought and valued, helping us feel comfortable and confident in being a part of the profession from day one. The relationships built with classmates helped get me through the program. Through study groups, sharing resources with one another, and planning social trips, we formed close friendships and supported one another through the program. With the challenging and evolving nature of the profession, I know that we will continue to value these relationships, both in our professional and personal lives.
What do you see for yourself in the future after graduation?
My last placement of the program was at a private practice clinic that specialized in manual therapy. I received invaluable guidance from the manual therapists on a regular basis, while also receiving feedback from patients. The positive feedback from patients highlighted the impact I could have on others through regularly incorporating manual therapy into my approach. This solidified my intent to pursue additional courses in manual and manipulative physiotherapy to help complement my emphasis on exercise and active interventions as treatment strategies. Further, I have always had a strong passion for the student experience, mentorship, and tutoring. Down the road I would love to combine this passion with my love for the profession through taking on students for their placements, assisting with small group cases, and getting involved with teaching in some capacity. I am fortunate to have been greatly impacted by faculty, placement supervisors, and mentors who have influenced my thinking, hands-on skills, and approach to helping others. It excites me to foresee opportunities to give back to student education one day in a similar fashion.
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