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Swetlana on rocky beach.
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Ward Summer Students: Meet Swetlana

Meet Ward Summer Student: Swetlana!

The Ward Family Summer Student Research Program is a highly prestigious 12-week summer opportunity offered by the Bloorview Research Institute (BRI). This summer 16 students were accepted into the program, including 2 students in the lived experience and 1 student in the Indigenous steams.

The selected undergraduate students experience interdisciplinary mentorship, as they work on a research project within the field of childhood disability alongside some of the BRI’s leading scientists. The paid opportunity culminates in Ward Research Day, where students showcase their research to scientists, researchers, clients and families, as well as clinicians at Holland Bloorview and beyond.

Each summer new ideas and innovations are born out of student research, which often lead to larger and greater discoveries at the BRI. None of this incredible work would be possible without the support of the Ward Family and CIBC, and their continuous commitment to expanding what’s possible for kids and youth with disabilities.

Meet Swetlana

Swetlana Kumar is going into her second year of a Bachelor of Health Sciences degree at Queen’s University. She is working in the CP Discovery Lab this summer with Dr. Darcy Fehlings. She has an avid interest in healthcare and understanding the barriers and facilitators that affect it. Some of her favourite parts of the Ward summer program so far have been the Wheelchair Basketball event and getting to know the rest of the summer students better. 

After looking at many different summer opportunities, Swetlana decided to apply to the Ward program because it offered something that not many others did. The Ward program offered her a summer job, and also unrivaled academic experience. The combination of Lunch ‘n Learns led by experts in their fields, the opportunity to present at the Ward Summer Student Research Day, and exposure to the vast field of childhood disability research makes the program one that not only teaches, but enriches. Swetlana is currently working on the national EDIT-CP project in the CP Discovery Lab, specifically on developing a scoring aid for the Hammersmith Infant Neurological Exam to facilitate early detection of cerebral palsy in Canada.

We started off the week strong with our weekly EDIT-CP (Early Detection and Intervention - Cerebral Palsy) meeting on Monday at 10 AM, instead of Friday due to required preparation for 2 community of practice meetings held on Thursday. Discussions with Lauren, Bisman, and Darcy are my favourite because even when I'm passively listening, I learn so much!

Seeing the first immersive, customizable, child-friendly, and fully accessible MRI unit in Canada didn't feel any different to me than other MRIs I've seen in the past, but hearing Kevin (MRI Tech) explaining all of the features that Kevin (MRI) has, I realized it doesn't feel different to me but it must feel so different to the kids it was designed for.

This break room was already my go to during lunch because of the gorgeous view, but at the end of this rainy day, seeing the lights on for the first time pushed it further up my list of favourite spaces at the Bloorview Research Institute!

Rainy 1 hour commute days are the best commute days.

Four meetings back to back + Prep = No time to eat lunch (Thankfully, this is a rare occurrence).

 

5 to 9 after the 9 to 5.

Recording the Introductory Hammersmith Infant Neurological Exam webinar. Requesting clinicians and OTs older and smarter than you to redo a recording takes bravery.

Editing the HINE Introductory Webinar outside (no Wifi required) with the videos at 2.75x speed (social media attention span effects).

 

We love continuous developmental feedback when it comes to the HINE Scoring Aid!

No Sunday Scaries in the Ward Summer Student Research Program!