I graduated from Kamloops Senior Secondary School in 1970 and then attended SFU from Sept 1970 until May 1976 having taken one year off after second year to travel and then make some money to go back to finish my degree. I graduated with a first Class Honours degree in Chemistry with a minor in Mathematics.
Following graduation, I obtained a teaching position for 6 months at King Edward College and then moved to Capilano College (as it was then called) to continue teaching Mathematics, Chemistry and Physics in the Adult Education Department. I was head of the department for several years and we started 3 satellite programs in Sechelt, Squamish and Mount Currie.
I became discontent with teaching and, as I had always wanted to go into medicine, I applied for and was accepted into the UBC medical school. I started in September 1982 and graduated in 1986. I did a one year rotating internship at St Paul’s Hospital to complete my requirements in 1987.
I started my practice in Surrey in 1988 and have been an active member of the community and hospital ever since. I have a general practice but do a fair bit of maternity, pediatrics and sports medicine. I am the Vice Chief of Obstetrics at Surrey Memorial Hospital and organize any and all trainees that wish to do training in Obstetrics at Surrey. I am a clinical assistant Professor in the UBC department of medicine and I am site faculty for Assessment and Evaluation for our UBC Family Practice residency program at the Surrey-South Fraser site which started 4 years ago . I am a founding board member for the Surrey North Delta Division of FP and am the vice chair and lead physician on several projects.
I have a keen interest in sports and, in particular, soccer. I played for almost 30 years but had a career ending injury. I was on the medical staff of the Vancouver Whitecaps (Women’s Team) from 2004 to 2012 and I went with the Women’s U20 National team to the CONCACAF qualifying rounds in Mexico and to the World Cup in Chile in 2008 as the team doctor. I was on the Tsawwassen Soccer Club executive starting in 2003 after I started coaching in1998. I was the U 14-U18 girls coordinator then the referee Sceduler for 2 years and then the field scheduler for 4 years. It is my passion for soccer that allowed me to carry the torch in the 2010 Olympics!
Why did you choose to go to SFU?
At the time I was ready go to university (1970) there were only 2 universities available - UBC and SFU. I was accepted into both but my boyfriend at the time had been to UBC and wanted to go to SFU and he convinced me to go there. My older sister was also attending SFU and I could live with her. SFU had a riot a few years before I attended and lost its accreditation for a while. All my friends thought I was crazy to go to SFU but the science department was really good.
Where did you spend the most amount of time on campus?
Early on, I spent most of my time in the Physics common room and then mostly in the library. I spent a great deal of time at the gym and pool too. I was a bit of a jock and played varsity field hockey and was on the diving team. I also played intramural volleyball and the Chemistry team was awesome and we won many championships.
What is your favorite memory from your time at SFU?
Without a doubt, my favourite memory was walking on the glass roof overtop of the main square. The library was expanding from 3 floors to 4 floors and a few of my friends and I were able to sneak into the construction site, climb up the ladders and step out onto the roof. It was a real thrill and we never got caught!
Who was your favorite SFU professor and why?
Keith Slessor - Chemistry (now deceased). He went out of his way to engage the students and make sure we were doing OK and performing to the best of our abilities. I wrote a midterm (first of 3) and got 97% but my marks decreased as I got into the party scene. He noticed the change and, in a very fatherly way, told me he thought I could do better and I did. He was tremendously supportive and a great teacher.
How has your SFU degree impacted your career?
Getting my degree at SFU was critical to getting into medical school. I was able to get all the pre-requisites I needed and I learned how to work hard and study at SFU. I developed a good work ethic at SFU which really helped with my future studies.
What is your favorite SFU snow story?
I took the bus to SFU and, on one particular day, it could not get up the last part of the hill because of the snow. We all had to get out and walk the last mile or so to get to classes and the snow was above our knees! The campus seemingly never closed when it snowed but UBC always did and there were no hills at UBC!! We took the cafeteria trays and used them as sleds to go whizzing down the hills. Those things went so fast and it really hurt when we crashed.
If you could give advice to students today, what would you tell them?
Never give up on your dreams! It is better to try and fail than to never try at all. How can you possibly succeed if you don’t even try?
What is the one thing about SFU that must not change?
Caring faculty who connect with the students. Small tutorial sizes.