How Will You Contribute to U of T Medicine?
I am very pleased to welcome all members of the U of T Medicine community to the start of a new academic year. I especially want to welcome the new members of our community. I am glad you have chosen U of T Medicine as your home for training and career development, and I am confident you will be challenged and inspired by our academic programs and extracurricular activities, and through your broader experience at U of T.
Moreover, the calibre and dedication of the people who study and work here is superb. As you engage with your peers in new and evolving learning and research environments, remember that there is tremendous support available for wellness and productivity — and committed colleagues ready to give it.
We begin this year on a sad note. Over the last few weeks, we have lost three individuals who have made remarkable contributions to their fields and represent the best attributes of this Faculty: Professor Emeritus Choong Chin “C.C.” Liew of the Departments of Biochemistry and Medicine; Professor Jay Keystone of the Department of Medicine; and University Professor Emeritus Donald Stuss.
Prof. Liew, who first joined U of T as a graduate student of Prof. Charles Best, was the youngest person at the time to achieve tenured full professor status. His early work in diabetes and heart failure contributed to the development of clinical tests and treatments that are still widely used today. He was a pioneer in the emerging field of genomics, made foundational contributions to the Human Genome Project and was the first to publish the human cardiovascular genome in 1997.
Prof. Keystone graduated from our MD Program in 1969, winning the Cody Gold Medal for standing first in his class through all four years of medical school. In 1977, he became the Director of the Tropical Disease Unit at the Toronto General Hospital, following extensive postgraduate training in tropical medicine. He also served as Director of the Toronto Medisys Travel Health Clinic and was president of the International Society of Travel Medicine as well as the clinical group of the American Society of Tropical Medicine.
Prof. Stuss undertook a number of leadership roles, including as Founding President and Scientific Director of the Ontario Brain Institute, Founding Director of the Rotman Research Institute, a Vice President of both Research and Academic Education at Baycrest and Interim Director and CEO of the Heart and Stroke Foundation Centre for Stroke Recovery. He was also an Affiliate Scientist at Sunnybrook Research Institute. In 2004, Prof. Stuss was named a University Professor — the highest faculty rank at U of T, representing approximately two per cent of tenured faculty members at the University. His research focused on understanding and treating the cognitive functions and personality changes associated with frontal lobes in the elderly, as they occur after stroke, and in those with traumatic brain injury or dementia.
We mourn the passing of Profs. Liew, Keystone and Stuss, but take comfort in knowing their legacies will be sustained: through their research contributions, the patients they aided, the students they trained and the colleagues they mentored. We can honour them through our own efforts, and demonstrate the same commitment to excellence and leadership that exhibited. They helped to build U of T Medicine, an ongoing endeavour to which we all — students, faculty and staff — can contribute.
I look forward to seeing how you will help build U of T Medicine. Again, welcome and best wishes on the year ahead!
Dean, Faculty of Medicine
Vice Provost, Relations with Health Care Institutions
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