Medical Students' Association

Meet the OC

Welcome 2022s! Meet your friendly neighbourhood Orientation Committee! We'll be reaching out to you throughout the summer to keep you informed on get-togethers, deadlines, and opportunities over the summer, in addition to facilitating your Orientation Week. We are here as a resource to you, so if you have any questions, please do no hesitate to reach out to us in person, or online at msaorien@ualberta.ca.

In the meantime - meet your 2018 Orientation Officers!

Kiersten Schwann

Hometown: Calgary, AB
Undergraduate Degree: Life Sciences at Queen’s University
What is your most embarrassing moment of medical school? AHHH there’s probably more than the ones I can name off the top of my head. IMMEDIATELY what comes to mind is my second LCE (Longitudinal Clinical Experience) shift. The family physician that was overseeing me wanted me to do a ear exam on one of his patients. Being an inexperienced med student as well as a socially awkward person in general, I fumbled with the otoscope before finally getting a good look into his ear. My preceptor asked me what I saw and I just looked at him confused and whispered, “I can’t find his tympanic membrane…” They both laughed at me and then revealed that the man had a perforated eardrum. I sighed in relief and before I could filter what came out of my mouth, I said “THAT’S SOOOO COOL!” After my outburst, I realized what I had done and gave the patient a shifty eye before saying “um… not for you obviously… for my learning…”  ANNNNND that was the moment my preceptor lost faith in me. Haha jokes (meh - this might be true)!
2nd most embarrassing moment - realizing all your O-Week team members chose not to answer this question…
What do you do outside of medical school? I like to play as much soccer as I can! Right now, I’m on 3 different teams. Besides that, I’ve been actively trying to conquer every escape room in Edmonton. I’m also really into watching improv and comedy. OH and brunch. I LOVE brunch <3

How do you destress? By sitting down and chatting on the phone with my friends and family (and obviously Netflix binging…)!

What advice would you give to incoming students? I would tell the incoming students to try to be mindful of the signs and symptoms of “Imposter Syndrome.” One thing that I’ve learned about getting into medical school is that there are people out there who believe in you probably more than you believe in yourself - that in itself should give you the confidence to be as ambitious as you want to be. So go out there, immerse yourself in the “med experience,” and don’t take a single second of this journey for granted. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed!
Favorite thing about Edmonton? I love the River Valley! Edmonton has such amazing trails and everytime I find something scenic (which is quite often), I’m always left so enchanted. Edmonton is also quite pedestrian-friendly, which is awesome considering its a major city.


Jacqueline Karathra

Hometown: Edmonton, AB
Undergraduate Degree: Biology at the University of Alberta
What is your most embarrassing moment of medical school?
What do you do outside of medical school? I love to hike on the weekends whenever I can, and I also dance with an Indian classical dance performing group in my free time!
How do you destress? Hitting up the gym and reading anything that’s NOT a textbook are my go to destressors.
What advice would you give to incoming students? Use the first 2 years of pre clerkship to find the people and activities that you are really interested in and enjoying spending time doing. Make the most of all of the new opportunities you will have as a first year student!
Favorite thing about Edmonton? I’ve grown up in Edmonton, and I love finding new cafes, restaurants, or walking trails that I’ve never been to before. Edmonton is this cozy little city that seems like it doesn’t have much, but I’m always surprised by what I find when I go looking for it!

Chu Lin

Hometown: Calgary, AB

Undergraduate Degree: I studied Life Sciences at Queen’s University in Kingston

What is your most embarrassing moment of medical school? Not being able to spell or pronounce half of the medical terminology we learn in class (like sphygmomanometer).

What do you do outside of medical school? I love to explore Edmonton’s coffee shops. There are numerous around campus that I would recommend trying out!

How do you destress? It’s important to take time for yourself when needed! Catching up with friends over coffee is a great way to destress.

What advice would you give to incoming students? Spend lots of time with family and friends. This helps to recharge and get ready for med school.

Favorite thing about Edmonton? Shops and restaurants on Whyte Ave.


Sierra Casey

Hometown: Edmonton, AB!
Undergraduate Degree: Biology at University of British Columbia, Vancouver
What is your most embarrassing moment of medical school? Squirting blood all over myself and a classmate while trying to start an IV for the first time.
What do you do outside of medical school? I love going to the mountains on the weekend to ski at Lake Louise, Sunshine Village or in the backcountry.
How do you destress? I go late night rock climbing at Rock Jungle Boulders
What advice would you give to incoming students? Keep doing the things you love to do! Med school has all sorts of different people with different interests. It’s so easy to find like-minded people who will love to do fun stuff with you.
Favorite thing about Edmonton? It’s so easily walkable, the community is great and the people are so nice!

Daniel He

Hometown: Fredericton, New Brunswick

Undergraduate Degree: I studied Electrical Engineering at the University of New Brunswick

What do you do outside of medical school? I play the clarinet and guitar (not at the same time).

How do you destress? I attempt to learn new languages!

What advice would you give to incoming students? Don’t worry and make sure you spend time with your wonderful classmates!

Favorite thing about Edmonton? The scenery is so nice, and there’s so much food and culture around the city.