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Events listed below are coordinated by the Arts & Science Alumni Office as well as by various Arts & Science academic units.  For a list of general U of T alumni events, please see the U of T Events Calendar.

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b2B Industry Night – Careers in Healthcare & Wellness (2019)

November 21 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Thinking about a career in healthcare and wellness services? Curious as to how to plan your path forward and connect your current studies with a job after graduation? Join us on Thursday, November 21, 2019, when alumni and students will mix and mingle for a very special b2B.

Careers in healthcare and wellness services span many areas and offer a variety of career options after graduation. The skills you gain from your Arts & Science degree can be transferred into many opportunities in these fields. This networking reception will be a great opportunity to make these connections and speak with multiple alumni who graduated from the Faculty of Arts & Science and have gone on to pursue a career in health sciences, as well as with fellow U of T students who are also considering this path.



The b2B Industry Night focuses on careers in a specific industry, and offers an opportunity for students to engage with alumni who graduated from the Faculty of Arts & Science, and who are now working in various fields.

Event Objectives

  • Connect students, recent grads, and alumni who are interested in a career in health sciences.
  • Encourage conversations about how an Arts & Science education contributes to a career in the field.
  • Explore career options in order to support a successful transition after graduation.
  • Develop and expand your professional network.
  • Build awareness about the realities of a career in the industry and potential paths to get there.
  • Discover a variety of career stories.


Time Activity
5:30 pm Alumni are invited to arrive, register and mingle.

Refreshments will be provided throughout the evening

6:00 pm Students arrive and register.

Ambassadors will be on hand to introduce students to alumni

6:15 pm Opening remarks

Networking event officially begins

8:00 pm Networking event officially concludes

Event Audience

The b2B Industry Night attendees include students and recent graduates at various stages of their education and career, as well as Arts & Science alumni, including:

  • U of T Arts & Science Alumni currently working in the industry
  • Undergraduate students who are considering a career in the industry and want to learn how their studies will support them beyond graduation
  • Graduate students (MA, MSc, PhD) who are interested in exploring careers in the industry
  • Recent graduates who are looking to continue to develop their networks, professional skills and industry knowledge
  • Representatives from other U of T Faculties with programs related to health sciences

Alumni Biographies

Karen Beckermann, Associate Director, Toronto Public Health

Over 15 years public health experience including health promotion, program planning, organizational performance management and CQI, emergency preparedness and immunization. Through diverse experience and increasing responsibility my career has evolved in ways I never could have predicted or imagined.

Michael Calvert, Senior Clinical Director (retired), Sinai Health System 

Michael is the now retired (August, 2019), Senior Clinical Director of the Specialized Medicine and Complex Care Program of Sinai Health System, a major downtown Toronto Hospital system, fully affiliated with the University of Toronto. Clinically, his portfolio focused on the care of patients and caregivers who required advanced renal care including hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis, palliation, neuro-muscular support, and advanced care for the medically fragile.

Michael has had a varied career within healthcare, ranging from being Critical Care Nurse within a Neurosurgical -Trauma Intensive Care Unit (St. Michael’s Hospital), a Clinical Nurse Educator, a Patient Care Manager, Clinical Director Rehabilitation Services and Ambulatory Care (Bridgepoint Hospital), and finally as a Senior Clinical Director (Sinai Health System).

Michael graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in History from St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto in 1980, and went on to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Ryerson Polytechnic University, and a Masters in Theological Studies, from St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto.

Tammy Chan, Associate Registrar, Admissions, Recruitment and Programs 

Representative from the Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing

Lauren Della Mora, Team Lead, Cancer Screening Program Design, Cancer Care Ontario

I was excited to pursue an Honours BSc at the University of Toronto, specializing in Human Biology: Health & Disease and minoring in Sociology. As a commuter student, I still made time to participate in intramural sports, clubs and student life. After graduating in 2012, I worked on research projects in the departments of Anesthesia, Urology and Trauma at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. Time spent in the operating room inspired me to pursue a career where disease prevention and healthcare quality improvement would be a priority. I completed the professional Master of Public Health program in Epidemiology at UofT’s Dalla Lana School of Public Health in 2015. My training included practicum placements at Toronto Western Hospital and Public Health Ontario.

In my current role at Cancer Care Ontario, I lead a team that develops evidence-based policies, processes and tools for piloting lung cancer screening for people at high risk in Ontario. Applying leadership, communication, analytic and project management skills is critical in my daily work.

Sabina Freiman, Medical Student, University of Toronto

I am currently in my final year of medical school at the University of Toronto. I went to Victoria College, and graduated with a double major in Neuroscience and Ethics, Society & Law. I was involved in a variety of things on campus, including The Strand newspaper, the Cat’s Eye lounge, and Alternative Reading Week, and did some research in kidney transplantation at Toronto General Hospital. I’m happy to chat about applying to medical school, alternative careers in healthcare I wish I understood better as an undergrad, and how to not lose your mind under all the pressure.

Charna Gord, Interim Graduate Coordinator, Master’s Programs, Department of Public Health Sciences
Representative from the Dalla Lana School of Public Health

Charna Gord is currently Interim Graduate Coordinator, Master’s Programs, Department of Public Health Sciences (PHS), Dalla Lana School of Public Health (DLSPH), University of Toronto. The range of PHS Master’s Programs offered at the DLSPH include Addictions & Mental Health; Bioethics; Biostatistics; Epidemiology; Family and Community Medicine; Health Practitioner Teacher Education; Indigenous Health; Nutrition & Dietetics; Occupational & Environmental Health; Occupational Health Care; Social & Behavioural Health Sciences (Health Promotion); and Wound Prevention & Care.

Michael Halsall, Retired Medical Lab Tech, Ministry of Health & Long Term Care

Continuing education and fixed-time constraints has been a lifestyle, I’ve been continuing my education at UofT for the better part of 4 decades now, and I bleed blue and white.  Currently registered in Rotman’s ongoing MOOC series and a constant attendee at many off-campus U Oft-in-the-neighbourhood lectures in the GTA.  UTM graduate in 1982 (BSc) and UT (Woodsworth) 26 years later 2009 (HBSc).  My multidisciplinary vocational and avocational background includes unique experiences involving specialized training in molecular microbiology, as a Medical Laboratory Technologist registered with the CMLTO and CSMLS.

My early lab career from 1970 to 1985 included US Navy (4yr), Sunnybrook Hospital UofT Clinic (8yr), Clinical Pathology Lab OVC UofGuelph (1.5yr) and CML Biochem (1.5yr) prior to real estate career (due to children and sporting activity).  Then back to lab vocation (tried to save marriage) where I worked at CML Microbiology, then Ministry of Health HIV Central Public Health Labs (Etobicoke) during SARS (represented MOHLTC on LabOntario SARS Committee at Ontario Science Centre November 2003). Concomitantly, also worked clinical laboratory teaching appointments at two Toronto Community Colleges and later in Ottawa as QC Coordinator at Bio-Test Medical Labs including four Specimen Collection Centers (SCC’s) during H1N1 pandemic, before retiring to Costa Rica briefly.

All in all, my experience extends from more than 3 decades of laboratory endeavors, to about a decade of real estate activity including TREB Communications Committee volunteer and some newspaper notoriety, as well as arbitration and expert witness responsibilities, and including about ten years of volunteer coaching MTHL hockey and managing High Park Little League baseball teams (representing Canada at the Little League World Series in Williamsport PA 1989,1996,1998) while raising two children.  Professional, occupational & language-derived skills were necessary as an Anti-Doping Male Chaperone in both the PanAm and ParaPanAm 2015 Games – a prestigious appointment.

Other volunteer initiatives include Level II national coaching certification (York Univ.) & Level II national officiating hockey certification (coach & player) to volunteering weekly as phone reception at West Neighborhood House homeless shelter in a relatively rough Toronto area at Queen/Bathurst (2012-2016).  Also as Sports Specialist NAIG2017 Games.  Both 2015 & 2017 Games volunteer initiatives involved security clearances at the highest RCMP levels.

Sanja Milicic Iafrate, Project Manager, GTA Rehab Network

Sanja holds a HonBSc in Human Physiology and Psychology from University of Toronto. Following her undergraduate studies, she completed a Master of Social Work from Cardiff University in Wales. She completed both her thesis and clinical practicum in Cardiff in the psychogeriatric field, and remained working there for a year. Upon return to Toronto, Sanja held a number of positions as a Registered Social Worker in the community, homecare and the hospital sector, advancing to a clinical manager position. Sanja returned to University of Toronto and completed a MHSc in Health Administration in 2017. Since graduating, Sanja has been working as a project manager for the GTA Rehab Network supporting planning and implementation of best practices in rehabilitative care across the GTA.

Tizneem Jiancaro, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Toronto

Tizneem is a rehabilitation researcher who works at the intersection of people and technology. Professionally, her interests include behavioural science, design, and wellbeing. Personally, she’s an avid motorcycle rider, paddler, and seasoned meditator. Tiz currently works in the field of health technology and behaviour change.

Miran Kim, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse, Ministry of the Solicitor General

Miran graduated from University of Toronto in 2010 with HBSC – double majors in Human Biology and Cell and System Biology. After completed HBSc At UofT, Miran continued educations and completed 2nd entry nursing degree at York in 2012.

Since then, Miran has been working as a Psychiatric Mental Health nurse at Centre for Addiction and Mental Health Emergency Department part time and employed as a mental health nurse for the Ministry of the Solicitor General full time. Miran also volunteered as a medical staff for special olympics ontario and victim service toronto.

While Miran was attending UofT, she was involved in many and various student activities/unions/groups as a general member and executive member and played role as a FLC assistant mentor for University College FLC in 2007 and continue to get involved in mentoring programs at UofT as an alumni. Also, Miran was a a research exchange student (HMB399Y) in 2009 summer to explore and attend Chinese University of Hong Kong for Chinese Medicine research department. In addition to the activities on the campus, Miran was a volunteer at Mt.Sinai hospital, Sick Kids Hospital, Hassle Free Clinic, Big Brother Big Sisters and many other organizations when she was an undergrad student at UofT.

Hope Miran to share her experiences and stories with Uof T students to motivate, encourage and to assist them to plan their future career path 🙂

Michael Lebenbaum, Epidemiologist, ICES (KEYNOTE SPEAKER)

Michael Lebenbaum completed a HBSc in Toxicology at the University of Toronto and a MSc in Epidemiology at Western University. Michael is a current PhD Student and Vanier Scholar at the University of Toronto in the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation. His area of study is Health Economics and his supervisors are Drs. Audrey Laporte and Claire De Oliveira. His PhD work focuses on empirically testing economic theories of social capital (i.e volunteering, religious attendance, social support, etc.). His PhD work has also examined the cost-effectiveness of policy interventions to prevent suicide. Michael also works as an epidemiologist in the Mental Health and Addictions Program at ICES on research projects related to inpatient psychiatry and the social determinants of mental health. He previously worked as an epidemiologist at Public Health Ontario on risk prediction and other research projects related to obesity and diabetes and as a Clinical Pharmacology Intern at Eli Lily Canada Inc. Michael has co-authored 24 peer reviewed publications to date.

Vivian Lo, Technical Specialist, Ministry of Long-Term Care

M.Arch., Hon.B.Sc., MRAIC, IDC, AIC, CAPS

Technical Specialist, Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care
Director & Special Projects Editor, The Right Angle Journal
Vice-President, Colour Research Society of Canada

Vivian Lo has a diverse background in journalism, medical sciences, public health, as well as architecture and interior design. She has been a journalist in various printed, broadcast, and online media for over 25 years in Canada and Asia. As well, she concurrently has over 20 years of progressive international architectural and healthcare design experience which includes working for the Ontario Ministries of Health and Long-Term Care for over ten years specializing in developing Canadian healthcare design, standards, and specifications, including hospitals and long-term care homes. She has been a member of several Steering Committees for Healthcare Facilities Design. She has also been a committee member of the Ontario Association of Architects, the Association of Registered Interior Designers of Ontario, and the Canada Green Building Council, as well as a conference committee of 2013 International Union of Architects Public Health Group Congress and Design, Health World Congress in 2014, LivABLE Environment Conference 2020, and International Colour Association 2022 Interim Meeting.
Vivian is a 2018 University of Toronto Arbor Award recipient and has been a mentor for university graduate and undergraduate students for over 12 years.

Ian McDermott, Senior Director, FM-PRO Planning & Integration/Research Facilities, University Health Network

Ian McDermott is the Head of Planning and Integration (Space Management and Capital Project Planning) for all areas of the organization, and the Senior Director of Research Facilities at the University Health Network ( in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. He is the Past-President of Sustainable Labs Canada ( Ian has been a member of the Senior Management Team for Research at the University Health Network for the last 21 and is also a member of the Senior Management team of UHN Facilities Maintenance – Planning, Redevelopment and Operations (FM-PRO).

In his current roles, Ian works intimately with clinicians, educators, researchers, administrators, project managers, engineers, architects, contractors, building operators, vendors and regulators in managing space and designing academic healthcare, research and education space while also focusing on operational parameters. Ian is leading UHN’s Integrated Facilities Master Planning project with a targeted completion in 2019. Ian and his team are project, space and scientific interpreters, translating needs and concepts between the all the users and the design/operational teams. He is also responsible for the Facility Maintenance and Operations of both the Princess Margaret Cancer Research Tower (MaRS) and the Krembil Discovery Tower. Ian strives to ensure these environments continue to be leading sustainable environments meeting the needs of the UHN. With a clear focus on the needs of the clinicians, educators,

Steven Molinski, Manager, Contract Services, CCRM

Steven received his PhD (Biochemistry, 2016) from U of T under the supervision of Christine Bear at SickKids, where he was involved with drug discovery efforts for rare Cystic Fibrosis mutations. During his PhD he also co-founded NeuroBlot, a startup company that developed a personalized memory test for individuals at-risk for dementia. Following his graduate studies, Steven joined Cyclica (Toronto-based drug discovery software company) as an Application Scientist, where he was responsible for business development, project design, client delivery, and internal research projects using Cyclica’s proprietary computational tools. Two years later he became Senior Solutions Scientist, Business Development, where he was responsible for global business development, contract drafting and negotiation, corporate strategy, and investor relations. Currently, Steven is the Contract Services Manager at the Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM), responsible for business development activities relating to CCRM’s unique process development and cGMP manufacturing capabilities for global biotech/pharma companies developing cell and gene therapies. To date, Steven has co-authored 20+ peer-reviewed publications and three US provisional patent applications.

Carol Nash, Scholar in Residence, History of Medicine Program, Department of Psychiatry

A narrative researcher with the History of Medicine Program, since 2015 I have facilitated a weekly Health Narratives Research Group through the Department of Psychiatry at the Mount Sinai Hospital serving researchers from across the University ranging from undergraduates to heads of departments.

Christine Pemberton, Founder and Chief Revenue Generator, Maia Inc.

Christine is a “labelled” expert in the wellness industry and natural cares; helping companies bring products to market that benefit people (natural, safe, effective), and assisting individuals in best practices. She has over twenty four years experience in the “healthcare” industry. Over 15 years ago she left the pharmaceutical industry to concentrate on proven effective, natural, preventative cares that address the 7 facets of well-being to facilitate positive change. Author of many industry reports, and most recently 49 Ways to Healthy Vibrant Skin she specializes in assisting companies and individuals launch and utilize products that manage the signs of aging, and commence healing, renewal and regeneration. She is founder of the Rejuvin-Aging Association of North America, Make a Change to help individuals overcome and conquer challenges to live the balanced and successful life they desire, is Founder of a successful consulting company Maia International Inc. that assists businesses launch effective, proven products globally for increased reach and benefit.

Currently, Christine is writing 49 Ways to Rejuvenate and Manage Aging, and is a Reiki Master as well as Huna Practitioner. She is also available to advise on lifestyle, managing priorities for a balanced life, and assists on general good health as well as the importance of mental well-being.

Li Shi, Associate Dentist, Hong Dental

I graduated from Faculty of Arts and Sciences in 2011 (double majored in Physiology and Biochemistry). Then I continued my education at University if Toronto, obtained Master of Science and Doctor of Dental Surgery degrees. I now work as an associate dentist in Toronto.

Thérèse Stukel, Professor/ Senior Scientist, ICES/ University of Toronto

Thérèse A. Stukel, PhD, is a Senior Scientist at ICES Toronto; Professor, Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation (IHPME), University of Toronto; and Professor of Biostatistics and Health Policy, The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice (TDI), Geisel School of Medicine, Hanover, NH, USA. She has published over 200 peer-reviewed papers in leading medical and statistical journals including New England Journal of Medicine, Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and Lancet, several as first author, many accompanied by editorials. In 2007, she was nominated Fellow of the American Statistical Association.

Current research interests are on the effects of health system resources and organization on delivery of care and outcomes in Canada and the US, including international comparative studies. She created Ontario Multispecialty Physician Networks, virtual networks that mimic US Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), and that are the template for the emerging Ontario Health Teams. She has evaluated their efficiency (quality vs. costs) in managing patients with chronic disease. She is developing models to predict high need, high cost patients prospectively using modern statistical prediction models and machine-learning methods.

Cristina Tassone, Performance Analyst, Cancer Care Ontario

Cristina Tassone is a Performance Analyst at Cancer Care Ontario where she collects, analyzes and interprets data to support the achievement of performance deliverables for the Regional Cancer Programs. She is responsible for scorecard development and enabling performance management to drive improvement in the cancer system. She has worked at the St. Michael’s Hospital Academic Family Health Team, where she assisted with quality improvement initiatives to enhance patient care. She holds an Honours Bachelor of Science in Human Biology and Master of Health Informatics from the University of Toronto. She is a Lecturer at the Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation at the University of Toronto, where she leads workshops for Health Informatics students and connects them to organizations to complete their practicum placements.

Oleksandr Udovyk, Health, Safety and Environmental Specialist, Mondelez International Inc.

My name is Oleksandr Udovyk and I have completed HBSc in 2014, majoring in Immunology and Psychology at the University of Toronto, St. George campus. Afterwards, I completed my MPH at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, specializing in Occupational and Environmental Health. Now I am employed as a Health and Safety Specialist at the Mondelez International Inc. The facility I work at produces Cadbury products for the Canadian market. I am responsible for promoting and implementing various policies and initiatives aimed at improving workplace safety at my workplace. It includes creating policies and working with different stakeholders to implement various safety-related materials and initiatives. I am also responsible for compliance to various provincial and federal legislation and applies to my facility. I would be happy to answer any questions that you may have.

Omar Wagih, Research Scientist, Deep Genomics

Omar graduated in 2012 with a specialization in Computational Biology followed by a MSc in Computer Science at the University of Toronto and a PhD in Computational Biology from the University of Cambridge and the European Bioinformatics Institute. Soon after graduating from his PhD in 2017, he began his current role as a Research Scientist at Deep Genomics, a start up utilizing AI, biology and automation to enable a new approach to drug development. There, he is responsible for developing AI models that can learn and predict clinical endpoints such as the toxicity and efficacy of a drug. Omar had initially joined Deep Genomics in its early years as a summer research intern in 2016. Feel free to ask him about his experience working as an intern!

Tara Marie Watson, Research Coordinator, Center for Addiction and Mental Health 

Tara Marie Watson holds a PhD from the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies, University of Toronto. With longstanding interests in substance use and drug policy reform, for over a decade she has conducted qualitative research related to public health programs for people who use drugs. She completed studies of cannabis use and driving as a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. As a Co-Investigator/Co-Principal Investigator on funded projects, she is working with cross-jurisdictional and cross-sector teams to study diverse stakeholder and community responses to cannabis legalization.

Kewei Xu, Senior Compliance Officer, Canadian Food Inspection Agency

Dr. Kewei is employed by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) as a Senior Compliance Officer. The primary task is to protect the public from health hazards or fraudulent or misleading advertising or labelling in foods.

Additionally, Kewei conducts compliance verifications, food safety investigation and recall, and evaluation of the manufacture, processing, distribution, labelling or advertising of foods according to related legislation and regulations.

Before joining the agency, he worked at the University Health Networks (UHN) as a researcher to de-convolute potential therapeutic targets in Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). He graduated from the University of Toronto Scarborough with the Honored Bachelor of Science (HBSc) degree in 2011 and earned his Ph.D. in cell and systems biology from the school of graduate studies in 2017.



November 21
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm