The CAMH Student Centre is officially opened for business following a grand opening ceremony on June 4, 2014.
Students training at CAMH need a central place for them to register and congregate in order to connect more meaningfully with our hospital and with each other,” says Dr. Ivan Silver, Vice President of Education. “We have created a welcoming, state-of-the-art, and learner-focused infrastructure to ensure an exceptional learning experience for learners from all professions and disciplines.”
Enhancing the student experience has been a major priority of the CAMH Education Strategy. As a teaching hospital, CAMH provides education, training, internships and residencies for approximately 1,300 students each year, and that number continues to grow. Learners come to CAMH from diverse fields and from all walks of life.
Melissa Leaist, Manager of Strategic Planning and Special Initiatives says staff from CAMH Education, Professional Practice Office, Redevelopment and Facilities came together to plan a welcoming Student Centre, placed centrally at street level at 101 Stokes Street, the Doctors Association Building.
“The prime location was aimed at acknowledging the reality of CAMH as a teaching hospital and as a place where students are welcomed and supported,” Melissa explains. “The space aims to bring together students of all disciplines to collaborate and learn from another, and where we strive to transform all students who visit us to become advocates for mental health, whether they continue in this field or not. Every learner will carry the commitment to transform the lives of people affected by mental illness and addictions.”
During her speech at the Grand Opening event, CAMH CEO, Dr. Catherine Zahn said, "It is important to build a physical representation of what you want to accomplish. By building this beautiful centre, I think we are saying to our students that we value their presence and the importance of teaching at CAMH."
From the first day of a student’s visit, the Student Centre will be the place to go to get their CAMH identification and access keys, have computer access set up, receive an orientation and gather any other information. Once oriented to CAMH, the Student Centre will continue to be a fun space for students and residents to take a break, eat lunch, catch up on emails or other work, chat with other students across all professions and meet with our education coordinators -- staff who take on students to train and supervise. Above all, the Student Centre is providing students at CAMH a place of their very own to collaborate, socialize, and have access to the information they will need to succeed in their training, studies and work at CAMH.
The Student Centre is open Monday to Friday between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.
What students are saying about their new Centre:
"Because students often are here in a transitory capacity, it is sometimes difficult to find a place that we can call our own or be at home, even if it for a temporary time. So, a Student Centre is a great place where we can just be at home." -- Rodrigo Solano, Spiritual Care student
"There are so many different students here doing different placements and doing different projects…so, it will be great to have the space to come to and meet different professionals and learn about the different programs and units at CAMH." -- Lydia Beck, Occupational Therapy student
"The Student Centre is a great networking opportunity for students to be able to either talk to other students from their discipline or other student, a place where they can go and be at home." -- Sandra Spadaro, Pharmacy student