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Pediatric Neurology Residency Program

 

12

CHILD NEUROLOGISTS ACROSS WIDE RANGE OF SUBSPECIALTIES

 

#1

BUSIEST CONSULT SERVICE AT THE  CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL

 

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INPATIENT SERVICES: GENERAL SERVICE NEURO CRITICAL CARE SERVICE

 

CaRMS Information 

All interviews will be conducted virtually using Zoom as our interview platform.

There will be a welcome and registration with the Program Directors on the day of your interview, we will email you your schedule with all your schedule details

Our interview process consists of four separate stations
  1. Program Director Stations: meet with the program director and have a chance to ask questions about the program
  2. Resident Station: meet and chat with two residents
  3. Faculty Station 1: meet two faculty and discuss your interest in pediatric neurosciences
  4. Faculty Station 2: meet two faculty and discuss your interest in research

Our aim is not to quiz you, but rather to get to know you. We also want you to get to know us and be able for you to ask all your questions. We believe that the best resident for our program is the one that will best integrate with our team.

We are hosting Q&A sessions with program director and residents. Check out the dates on the CANPREPP portalWe look forward to meeting you at our live events!

Contact Us

Colin Wilbur
Program Director

Joan Thibault  
Program Administrator
Email: pedneuro@ualberta.ca  


Pediatric Neurology Program
Edmonton Clinic Health Academy
11405-87 Avenue, 3rd Floor
Edmonton, AB T6G 1C9

Phone: 780-248-5543
Email: pedneuro@ualberta.ca
Division of Pediatric Neurology

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Dr. Colin Wilbur
Program Director

 

Joan Thibault

Joan Thibault
Program Administrator

Welcome to the Pediatric Neurology Residency Training Program

Pediatric neurology is a branch of medicine concerned with treating the disorders of the nervous system of children which includes all conditions involving the spinal cord, muscle, nerves, and brain. This specialty encompasses diverse fields such as learning and development, seizure disorders, headaches, and neurogenetics. Our program follows the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada's Objectives of Training and Specialty Training Requirements for Pediatric Neurology.

We are fortunate to have nine full time child neurologists with a diverse range of interests including epilepsy, headache, neuromuscular, neurogenetics, neonatal neurology and beyond. We run a busy consult service from the ER, wards, PICU and NICU (the busiest in the Stollery Children’s Hospital) providing exposure to all aspects of Child Neurology. Weekly Pediatric Neuroscience rounds, Epilepsy Surgery conferences and many teaching sessions are part of daily rounds, which assist in the sharing and consolidation of valuable knowledge.

It is our philosophy that the residency program serves to guide trainees in developing their own career objectives and help in fulfilling them. As such, our program is flexible with regards to electives both within our institution or abroad, and with regards to potential research projects.

In addition, our residents have input into their education and participate in the process of developing educational initiatives and policies. As our program offers a collegial environment between residents and attending staff, there are extensive opportunities for mentorship and career advice. 

The Stollery Children's Hospital has cardiac PCICU, cardiac surgeries, stroke and migraine programs, fetal neurology and NCCS are unique to the program. This hospital is the largest catchment area of any children’s hospital in Canada and with the large referral base is more detailed. Pediatric neurology residents have a very good and direct exposure to all these.

Collin Wilbur  
Program Director

 


Our Program

We are a fully accredited Royal College program. We offer consultative services for a full range of pediatric neurological disorders. Because of the number of faculty members with subspecialty interests and expertise, a wide variety of subspecialty pediatric neurology clinics are available for trainees including clinics in pediatric epilepsy (including ketogenic diet and epilepsy surgery), pediatric headache, neuromuscular disorders, neurodevelopment, neurogenetics, and pediatric stroke.

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Program Highlights

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High faculty-to-resident ratio (~2.5:1)

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Longitudinal Resident Clinic starting in second year

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Weekly academic rounds

 

Strong collegial relationship with Adult Neurology and General Pediatrics

Diverse experience in inpatient and outpatient settings, including community pediatric neurology

Large referral base

Residency at a Glance

Learn about each year of the program with an overview of each year.

Year 1

Orientation 

2 Blocks Pediatric Neurology 

1 Block NICU RAH

3 Blocks Pediatric CTU and Night Float 

Vacation

1 Block Emergency Department

1 Block Mental Health

1 Block Neurosurgery

1 Block Hematology oncology 

1 Block Pediatric Selective

Year 2

1 Block PCICU/1 block PICU

4-6 Blocks Pediatric Neurology 

1 Block Metabolics/Genetics

1 Block Pediatric Physiatry

2 Blocks Adult Neurology (4 weeks general neurology ward, 2 weeks stroke wards, 2 weeks consult)

1 Block EEG/Epilepsy 

1 Block Pediatric Neurology Clinic

1 Block elective or Neurology Subspecialty clinic (Pediatric Neurology Clinic, epilepsy, movement disorder, stroke, Multiple Sclerosis, neuro-ophthalmology, research, away elective)

1 Block Research

Year 3

4-6 Blocks Pediatric Neurology 

2 Blocks Adult Neurology (4 weeks general neurology ward, 2 weeks stroke wards, 2 weeks consult)

1 Blocks EEG/Epilepsy

1/2 Block Neuroradiology (2 weeks)

1-6 Blocks of research (over all 5 years)

1 Block Multiple Sclerosis

1 Block Neuromuscular (2nd half of year)

1 Block Peds Neurology Clinic

2 Blocks elective or Neurology Subspecialty clinic (Epilepsy, Movement Disorder, Stroke, Multiple Sclerosis, Neuro-ophthalmology, Research, away electives)

Year 4

4-6 Blocks Pediatric Neurology 

1 Blocks Adult Neurology (2 weeks Hyperacute stroke (no acute stroke overnight call - adult neuro call), 2 weeks outpatient clinic (no call))

2 Blocks Neuropathology 

1/2 Block Neuroradiology (2 weeks)

1-6 Blocks of research (over all 5 years)

Year 5 (Transition to Practice)

3-5 Blocks Pediatric Neurology

1-6 Blocks of research (over all 5 years)

3 Blocks elective or Neurology Subspecialty clinic (Epilepsy, movement disorder, stroke, Multiple Sclerosis, neuro-ophthalmology, neuromuscular, research)

6 Blocks (Neurology Clinics: Pediatric, Adult)

Teaching Hospitals

We are a fully accredited program that follows the guidelines set out by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Our program is four core years spent in general pediatrics at multiple locations.

Stollery Children's Hospital

  • The majority of training is provided at the Stollery Children's Hospital (SCH) which is the tertiary referral centre in Northern Alberta. The SCH has a busy medical service, surgical service, intensive care, and emergency room. It also houses pediatric oncology, pediatric cardiology, all surgical programs (general, cardiac, transplantation, neurosurgery, orthopedic, urological, and ENT surgery divisions), the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), and one level 3 Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) for outborn children.
  • The Stollery is a well-recognized centre for specialized pediatric services. It is Western Canada’s referral centre for pediatric cardiac surgery and a national leader in organ transplantation. The Stollery cares for children from northern and central Alberta, as well as parts of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Yukon and Nunavut.

University of Alberta Hospital 

  • University of Alberta Hospital  (UAH) is located on the U of A campus. It is one of Canada’s leading clinical, research and teaching hospitals, treating more than 700,000 patients annually from across Western and Northern Canada. Adjacent to the Stollery, the University Hospital is the primary site for adult neurology consultation requests.

Royal Alexandra Hospital 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best things about this subspecialty?
Pediatric neurology is always interesting and challenging. There have been great advances in our understanding of the brain and brain function, with increasing opportunities for treatment (for example, epilepsy, migraine and neuromuscular disorders). We place special emphasis on clinical research as well as opportunities in basic research. Our program has strong collegial relationships with both the adult neurology program and general pediatrics, and we offer interdisciplinary neuroscience rounds. We provide excellent teaching in neuroscience and neuroanatomy in the academic half-day.
What is the campus like?

The University of Alberta is a large centralised campus located in the vibrant Garneau neighbourhood with cafés and restaurants, next to the river valley with its many trails and parks. Both the University of Alberta Hospital (UAH) and the Stollery Children’s Hospital are located on the campus.

What is it like living in Edmonton?

Amazing! Edmonton hosts a year-round slate of festivals, reflected in its nickname Festival City. The city also has a great food scene with outstanding restaurants, bakeries and coffee shops, many of which are within walking distance of the Stollery. And, of course, there’s also the West Edmonton Mall, the largest mall in North America. Edmonton is a hockey city and proudly so. Whether you go to an NHL game at Rogers Place to watch Connor McDavid or sit at a local pub, Oilers fans are among the loudest in the league. 

What are the varieties of lifestyles within your field?

Most pediatric neurologists in Canada have an academic position (i.e. associated with a university) so they have multiple and varying responsibilities including in-patient and ambulatory care, teaching, research and administrative duties. Most practise in a group with shared call responsibilities. Call is often from home (i.e. you do not need to be in hospital overnight.)

What subspecialities do graduates commonly pursue after completing your program?
Many pediatric neurology residents pursue a Clinical Fellowship after residency. Some of our former residents have completed fellowships in the U.S.

Resident Testimonials

We asked our residents what they like about Edmonton, their highlights of the program, and one piece of advice for applicants about the interview process. Here is what a few of them had to say.

What do you like about Edmonton: The river valley is full of beautiful trails for biking, walking and jogging. The food scene is also excellent, especially with respect to small 'hole-in-the-wall' ethnic restaurants. During the summer there are a ton of outdoor festivals, ranging from the theatre arts Edmonton Fringe festival to Heritage Days Festival, where you can taste food from 160 different countries.

What are the highlights of the program for you:

The people! We have an incredible community of staff and residents. The staff are very invested in our learning and wellness, and genuinely want us to excel in our future careers! This translates to simple things like lots of teaching sessions and career mentorship, to pushing us to excel in research and present at international conferences! Their caring of our staff has on many occasions extended above and beyond. For example, during quarantine, multiple staff frequently checked in with us all to make sure no one was too overwhelmed, and our Program Director even made sure none of the residents were out of toilet paper! That caring culture helps foster a thriving group of wicked smart residents, who are also close friends and remain so beyond graduation. Many of our residents have gone on to do great things! Recent grads have done fellowships at Harvard and our current R5 will be starting a neuromuscular fellowship at Stanford in 2021.

What is one piece of advice that you want to share with applicants about the interview process:

Be genuine, and don't be afraid to show your excitement in the interviews! We love our job and are looking for candidates who are as enthusiastic about Peds Neuro as we are.

Risa Namsechi (R4, Edmonton)

 

What do you like about Edmonton: Edmonton is really a great city. There are so many amazing restaurants to try. During the winter there are a lot of outdoor activities. The city has great trails for cross county skiing. One of the parks turns into an ice castle which is amazing to walk through. There are skating rinks built into forests. In the summer Edmonton is filled with festivals - music, cultural, art - there is something going on every weekend. Also a plus is the proximity of the mountains (three hours).

What are the highlights of the program for you: I really like the small program, so you personally know all the staff you work with. You feel comfortable approaching staff to be involved in opportunities including seeing interesting patients, research and mentorship. We also have a wide variety of specialists spanning all parts of neurology which a lot of centres don't have. One in particular is the autonomic lab which is one of the only ones in Canada. Also enjoy the collegiality with adult colleagues so you see a wide span of disease based on age.

What is one piece of advice that you want to share with applicants about the interview process: For pediatric neurology all of the programs across Canada are great! Pick the program that you feel most comfortable in and where you feel like you fit. If you are interested in a certain subspecialty of neurology (kudos to you if you know this already!) make sure the program has a specialist in this field to learn from.

Amanda Yaworski (R5, Ottawa)

 

What do you like about Edmonton:

Student friendly, lots of places to eat and socialize, whyte age and Jasper are close to campus and easy to get to, still in manageable driving distance from the mountains and can still go on the weekends :)

What are the highlights of the program for you:

Close knit program, staff are very friendly, fun, and supportive, its a small program in a big hospital where you aren't isolated from other residents and you get to know the pediatrics and adult neuro residents well, very flexible program that will adjust your schedule based on your career interests, very supportive of your well being and will accommodate your life outside of residency (ie. important family events, weddings).

What is one piece of advice that you want to share with applicants about the interview process:

Get to know the people a bit before if you can!

Kailie Luan (R2, Calgary)

 

What do you like about Edmonton:

Great food and coffee scene!

What are the highlights of the program for you:

Excellent support from staff and administrators! You feel very supported and there are many opportunities provided to get involved with research, teaching, med ed etc. There is also excellent rapport between our general pediatrics and adult neurology colleagues.

What is one piece of advice that you want to share with applicants about the interview process:

CaRMS is a difficult process but remember the breathe and relax as much as possible. It will all work out in the end!

Emanuel Mostofi (R1, Edmonton)

 

What do you like about Edmonton:

Medium sized city. Close to the mountains.

What are the highlights of the program for you:

The mentorship and supports from program director and other staff neurologist.

What is one piece of advice that you want to share with applicants about the interview process:

The interviewers are all very nice and outgoing. We just want to learn who you are and why you are interested in Pediatric Neurology! We want to make sure you will be a good fit here.

Andy Ng (R3, Ottawa)