The Governor General’s Academic Medals have recognized the outstanding scholastic achievements of students across Canada for more than 125 years. The Collegiate Bronze Medal was established to celebrate the exceptional achievements of students and is awarded to the Advanced Diploma program student who receives the highest overall average in their graduating year at the Michener Institute of Education at UHN.
The recipient of the 2021 medal is graduating Genetics Technology student Erin Drury.
“I am extremely honoured and proud to be receiving this medal,” says Erin. “My whole experience at Michener has been extraordinarily positive from start to finish. I definitely attribute my success to how engaging my professors made the material and the passion they exhibited while teaching.”
Before attending Michener, Erin received an Honours Bachelor of Science from the University of Guelph. After graduating, she spent several years exploring work and travel opportunities, but ultimately felt she had fallen in love with genetics during her undergrad and knew she wanted to try pursuing a career in that field.
“When I started to look into genetics in healthcare and what a career in that area might look like, I knew it was the right path for me,” she says. “I had been aware of the Genetics Technology program at Michener since my undergrad and the more I looked into the field, the more I felt that it was exactly what I was looking for.”
Some of her favourite memories from her time at Michener include getting together with fellow classmates for lunches or dinners, as well as quiet sessions in the lab analyzing chromosomes and seeing her and her peers’ skills improve over time.
Currently, Erin is working full-time as a Medical Laboratory Technologist (MLT) in the Molecular Genetics Lab at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids). She feels that the COVID-19 pandemic has only further demonstrated the importance of the work she is doing.
“I think COVID has made the public more aware of our role in healthcare and hopefully will raise awareness of this career option for young people interested in science, especially given the shortage of Medical Lab workers in Canada right now,” she says. “Joining the field as an MLT in the midst of the pandemic has been a very interesting experience, and I’m really proud to be joining the ranks of such a hardworking group of people.”