By Michael McKinnon, Communications Manager, CAMH Centres of Innovation
Receiving the 2018 Innovation in Teaching award, the Ivan Silver Award for Excellence in Educational Mentorship on June 12 was an honour for Dr. Sacha Agrawal on so many levels.
“It’s a huge honour to be recognized among a group of such fabulous educators at CAMH,” says Dr. Agrawal. “This award also acknowledges the importance of including people with lived experience as educators with an important and complementary perspective to the training of mental health professionals. It’s really exciting to see that idea start to gain broad acceptance at CAMH and beyond. And as this year’s Innovation in Teaching award pays tribute to Dr. Ivan Silver, who has played a big role in championing this work and in mentoring me through it, being recognized in this way is particularly meaningful.”
With its theme of mentorship this year, the award recognizes Dr. Agrawal’s work on a series of projects that create new roles for people with lived experience to work as educators in the mental health profession. From Surviving to Advising, for example, pairs people with lived experience as advisors to senior psychiatry residents over the course of six months. Together with their students, the service-user educators create space for dialogue and critical reflection on mental health services and systems. Most recently, he’s helping bring the LETsLEAD curriculum to Canada for the time to help catapult people with lived experience into transformational leadership roles within mental health systems.
“Sacha won the award because of his innovative collaboration with service users as educators and the sensitive personal attention he has paid to mentoring these amazing teachers and advisors that is impacting on the quality of education of residents in the Department of Psychiatry,” says Dr. Silver, CAMH’s Vice-President of Education.
“Ultimately, it will be our patients that benefit from new and novel ways to teach and train our next generation of psychiatrists and other mental health professionals.” The award itself is a tribute to Dr. Silver’s contribution to the field of continuing professional development. Each year, it recognizes an innovative initiative developed and delivered by a CAMH staff member or physician or team that has demonstrated impact on health professional performance or health outcome.
“It is important to recognize excellence and celebrate it because it helps clarify what we are aspiring to at CAMH—to revolutionize education,” Dr. Silver says. “When other educators and teachers can read about their colleagues and the actual work they are doing to move the dial with education, they can be inspired to join the revolution to innovate.”
Read Sacha Agrawal's post about the LETsLEAD program here.
Find out more about the 2018 Innovation in Teaching Award here.
Read Ivan Silver's Reflections on Education post here.
CAMH staff can read more about Sacha's win internally on Insite here.
Masthead photo: From left, Jane Paterson, Dr. Sacha Agrawal, Dr. Ivan Silver and Mike Shaw celebrate the Ivan Silver Innovation Award on June 12.
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