Women in Cancer

2013 June Newsletter



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Book Recommendation

Lessons Learned: Stories from Women in Medical Management

Deborah M. Shlian

American College of Physician Executives, 2013-02-11

Edited and authored by Dr. Deborah Shlian, "Lessons Learned: Stories from Women in Medical Management" chronicles the successes, obstacles, and personal growth of 24 successful female physician executives as they made the transition from clinical medicine to leadership within government, academia, hospitals, consulting, etc. By sharing their stories of difficult jobs, family challenges, fatigue, and redemption, the underlying message of the book is clear. There is no straight line to success.


Dr. Sunil Verma, M.D., FRCP

Why is Sunil Verma the Successful Mentor of the Month for June?

Sunil Verma is a medical oncologist at the Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Centre and is an associate professor at the University of Toronto. He is also the chair of breast medical oncology at the Sunnybrook Cancer Centre.

Dr. Verma completed his internal medicine and medical oncology training at the University of Alberta and then went on to a fellowship in breast cancer at the University of Toronto. He also completed his Master of Science in medical education from the University of Southern California during his fellowship years.

Dr. Verma's main clinical interests are in the treatment and management of breast cancer and lung cancer. He also has key research interests in neoadjuvant and endocrine treatment of breast cancer, reducing toxicity of systemic treatment, and developing novel therapies in breast and lung cancer. He has won numerous teaching awards and has also been recognized with many awards for his mentorship.

Dr. Verma has led and created a number of national and international innovative educational projects in oncology. He is well published, including being first author in New England Journal of Medicine along with other prestigious journals and is recognized internationally for his research and education leadership in breast and lung cancer. He is a member of several professional societies including ASCO, the Canadian Association of Medical Oncologists, and the Canadian Medical Association.

Dr. Sonal Gandhi, medical oncologist at Sunnybrook, nominated Dr. Verma as the June mentor of the month. "Dr. Verma is an outstanding mentor – he leads by example in being an excellent clinician, teacher, and academic. He actively seeks good opportunities for his mentees in order to help develop their career goals. He strikes a great balance between providing direction and fostering independence."

Nominate a Mentor, Mention an Accomplishment for Next Month!

WinC provides a platform to increase visibility of great mentors on an international level. If you have someone in mind that has been an important mentor to you or people you know OR you have reached a new accomplishment, please email Yanci Rajmohan at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

  • 22-Jun-2013 to 28-Jun-2013
    Flims 15 Methods in Clinical Cancer Research Workshop Waldhaus Flims
  • 26-Jun-2013 to 28-Jun-2013
    2nd International Breakthrough Breast Cancer – Triple Negative Breast Cancer Conference 2013
    Church House, London
  • 03-Jul-2013 to 06-Jul-2013
    ESMO 15th World Congress on Gastrointestinal Cancer
    Barcelona, Spain
  • 10-Jul-2013 to 12-Jul-2013
    WIN 2013 Symposium
    Paris, France
  • 22-Jul-2013 to 26-Jul-2013
    European Cancer Stem Cell Research Institute Conference
    South Wales, United Kingdom
  • 25-Jul-2013 to 28-Jul-2013
    Up Close and Personalized, The 2nd International Congress on Personalized Medicine
    Paris, France
WinC is excited to announce that it will soon be expanding into All in Cancer (AlinC) in order to provide a forum for collaboration between all cancer care providers. As WinC appreciates that there are some differences between genders, WinC will still continue to exist as community within AlinC. More information on this development will be featured in the next newsletter.

The Flims 15 Workshop on Methods in Clinical Cancer Research hosted by ECCO-AAR-EORTC-ESMO is occurring at the end of this month from June 22 – 28th. In hopes of increasing the number of clinical scientists, the Workshop provides training on the principles of good clinical trial design to junior clinical oncologists in any subspecialty. WinC is pleased to announce that Dr. Magali Lecavalier-Barsoum from Montreal has been selected as the recipient of the WinC travel grant. Congratulations, Dr. Lecavlier-Barsoum!


Mentoring in medicine

Published in Canadian Family Physician Journal
February 2010 Vol. 56 No. 2 198

By: Savithiri Ratnapalan

"All of us learn from our experiences and especially from our mistakes. This knowledge – our hindsight – becomes our insight and can be passed on to become someone’s foresight."

In this article, Dr. Savithiri Ratnapalan describes different mentorship models used by professionals, some of which may change throughout the course of the mentorship relationship with time and need.

Mentorship Model Description
Apprenticeship Model
  • A hierarchical relationship where the trainee is mentored by a senior professional
  • Less personal than other models
Cloning Model
  • The mentor is planning succession and is grooming the mentee into the role through the medium of role-model
Nurturing Model
  • Creates an open environment where mentees can discuss personal issues, learn and try things for themselves while mentors act as resources and facilitators
Friendship Model
  • Both mentor and mentee are peers rather than being involved in a hierarchical relationship

Tips and Benefits of Mentorship:

  • Long-distance mentoring can be effective if both parties' educational or research interests match or if the mentee is planning on attending the mentor's institution as a staff physician or for further training
  • Having more than 1 mentor at a time accommodates different needs
  • Mentor benefits include: personal satisfaction, opportunities for self-reflection and self-renewal, appreciation of a new perspective, and increased commitment to profession
  • Mentee benefits include: increased confidence, networking opportunities, research guidance, and increased desire to pursue a career in a field of interest
WinC has reached 283 members with 363 Twitter followers; help WinC expand our network to 300 members by referring colleagues and trainees!

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn and be privy to tweets on leadership, new articles and thought provoking quotes. See the WinC posting board to see what we have been up to and for more information on our social networking accounts.

Membership is entirely free.

Membership is restricted to medical, radiation, and surgical oncologists as well as hematologists and trainees.

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