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How are we planning ahead for recruitment?
Abbotsford is showcasing the community and hospital to new medical students as a future career choice.

2024 Lightning Talk: National Future Physicians Forum, Dr Jennafer Wilson, Abbotsford Regional Hospital and Cancer Centre Physician Engagement Society

The Abbotsford Regional Hospital and Cancer Centre (ARHCC) MSA is taking a forward-thinking, strategic approach to recruitment and retention. It is showcasing Abbotsford as a place of opportunity, learning, and growth to new medical students at the outset of their careers.

Building connections and relationships with first-year medical students

To bring first-year medical students together, site partners organized an annual National Future Physicians’ Forum weekend conference aimed to:

  • Equip first-year medical students with essential knowledge and a strong foundation for their future learning and practice.
  • Share insights from experienced medical professionals from Abbotsford and Chilliwack, emphasizing important medical skills and concepts.
  • Showcase Abbotsford as a vibrant and supportive community that values education, innovation, and growth, and a prime location for medical professionals to work and live.
  • Foster long-term relationships with the next generation of medical professionals, creating a robust network of talent to drive innovation and progress at ARHCC and beyond.

Impact: lasting connections, future opportunities, stronger local engagement 

  • The event strengthened lasting connections among attendees, with at least 15 participants staying connected to the site. It additionally enhanced physician well-being through mentorship opportunities.  
  • ARHCC administrators and the physician community got to know each other by name, and engaged in conversations to build a more supportive network at the hospital.

Lessons and success factors

  • Seeking event planning expertise from Doctors of BC Engagement Partners, the Abbotsford Division of Family Practice, and ARHCC support staff fast tracked event coordination (from ordering t-shirts to event licensing).
  • Including medical students in the planning process improved the event by ensuring what they wanted to learn was incorporated and expectations were met.
  • Consulting with medical students early and applying what was learned from the first session will ensure a planned 2024 conference is an even better experience. 

DrJW“Many of us forget what it’s like to be a first-year medical student, and having the opportunity to work one on one with them so early on in their medical education provided a reflective practice where we could look back and appreciate our own journey through medicine and get us excited about why chose medicine to begin with.”  
– Dr Jennifar Wilson



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