The Heinz Lehmann Mentorship Group

The transition from medical student to resident is a significant period in the development of a physician. It is an important time for the acquisition knowledge and experience, but it is also presents challenges in terms of adapting to new responsibilities and increased work demands.

Ensuring that this transition is supported and fostered in a nurturing way is a priority for our program. During their PGY-1, our residents are predominantly in medical rotations and have not yet integrated their core psychiatry training. Mentoring and anchoring them to our program is of great importance in order that our residents gain a sense of belonging to their specialty.

Previously, PGY-1 residents where assigned a staff based on assumed compatibilities in terms of interests and personality.  This mentorship model was riddled with challenges including incompatibilities between the trainee and mentor, lack of time to meet, and a lack of subject matter to discuss.

It is for this reason that the program office has created a new mentorship initiative entitled the Heinz Lehmann mentorship group. The HL mentor is a gateway to resources within our program, department, university, and specialty for incoming junior residents (PGY1).

Key Players

  • The Heinz Lehmann Mentor
    • One faculty member
    • One senior resident (PGY4-5)
  • The Heinz Lehmann mentees
    • PGY1 residents in the postgraduate psychiatry program 

Selection of Staff Mentor

The program director and program office will be responsible for selecting a suitable faculty member. There might be a call for applications if more than one attending demonstrates interest in this position. The mentors will be selected in the spring (soon after the publication of the CaRMS match results) before the start of the upcoming academic year. This will allow mentors to get acquainted with the medical students who have chosen our program for their training (CaRMS).

Selection of Resident Mentor

The MPRA and program director/program office will be responsible for selecting a suitable senior resident for the role of resident mentor. There might be a call for applications if more than one resident demonstrates an interest in this position. The mentors will be selected in the spring (soon after the publication of the CaRMS match results) before the start of the upcoming academic year. This will allow mentors to get acquainted with the medical students who have chosen our program for their training (CaRMS).

Roles and Responsibilities of Staff Mentors

  • Inspire our department’s new recruits with passion for and interest in psychiatry
  • Be familiar with the residency training program and department
  • Be familiar with our program’s handbook, the FMRQ handbook, and McGill’s faculty promotions documents
  • Organize, with the help of the program and resident mentor, at minimum two dinners with the whole cohort of PGY-1s of our program.
    • Ideally these should be at the staff’s home so as to harbour a welcoming atmosphere and one that is suitable for undisrupted conversation. If the staff or resident mentor can find a suitable restaurant setting, which will not hinder the group conversation, this would be acceptable.
    • We strongly discourage choosing a noisy setting where confidentiality might be compromised in any way.
    • We strongly encourage staff mentors to host as many dinners as desired by the mentees and residents, however a minimum of two official dinners are mandatory.
    • Timing of dinners
      • Early fall of PGY-1
      • Late spring of PGY-1
    • Theme of the discussion for each official dinner
      • Early fall dinner: Adapting to residency
      • Late spring dinner: Preparing for entry into psychiatry
    • Shared self-reflection
      • Residents will be required to prepare a self-reflective typed text/narrative on the theme of each dinner, and they will be required to submit this document to their staff mentor for review and log this work on one45 (Mentorship activities (new longitudinal requirement).
    • Specific themes or subjects for the first dinner can include:
      • The challenges of entering residency
      • How to cope with the new demands of being a resident
      • How to cope with stress in healthy way
      • The challenges involved in changing institutions, provinces, countries
      • Defining the concept of wellness for medical trainees
      • How to foster wellness and wellbeing amongst colleagues
    • Specific themes or subjects for the second dinner can include:
      • What are your expectations on entering psychiatry residency training
      • What are you excited about as you enter psychiatry residency training
      • What are you worried about upon entering psychiatry residency training
      • What are your feelings in regards to psychotherapy
      • What are your feelings in regards to research
    • Ensure that mentees have submitted their self-reflective texts
    • Review the self-reflective pieces
    • Initiate dialogue with trainees related to specific aspects of their self-reflective piece if necessary or desired
    • Although the minimal requirement is that mentors host and animate two dinners in the PGY-1 year, we strongly encourage staff and resident mentors to meet with PGY-1 residents on an individual basis to address junior residents’ specific needs.
  • Staff mentors remain the designated mentor for their cohort for the complete duration of their training in our program. While the program funds the first year activities of the HL mentorship group we strongly encourage mentors to continue to organize annual get-togethers (at a minimum) with their cohort to touch base with their trainees.
  • The HL mentor might also direct junior residents toward mentors who they believe would be a good match from a clinical interest and/or academic perspective.
  • There is a pseudo academic/professionalism advisory role to the HL mentors. We strongly encourage mentors to read “best practices” in terms of the roles and responsibilities of residents. This includes:
    • Fostering a healthy relationship with one45 (practice for entering CPD credits as staff)
    • Encouraging a timely response to emails from the program, faculty, and postgrad
    • Encouraging continuous and timely constructive feedback of rotations, lectures, and supervisors

Roles and Responsibilities of Resident Mentors

  • Support the staff mentor in organizing the two mandatory dinners
  • Support the PGY-1 residents in preparing their two self-reflective texts
  • Support junior residents by identifying important reading material for their level
  • Support junior residents by providing information on conferences to attend
  • Support junior residents by helping or advising them in selecting rotations, psychotherapy supervisors, researcher advisors, etc.

Roles and Responsibilities of the Program

  • The program will provide administrative assistance to the mentors in organizing the two official dinners for the PGY-1
  • The program will fund the two PGY-1 dinners up to a maximum of $1,000 (for the two dinners)
  • The program will offer a symbolic stipend (depending on the program’s budgetary status) to the staff and resident mentors as a way to underline the program’s appreciation of their dedication to mentorship

Other Program-Based Mentorship Initiatives:

  • Balint groups organized for PGY-1 residents by senior residents (MPRA residents)
  • First year presentation to R1: Transition into Residency (MPRA)

Mentors for 2018-2019

R1: Dr. Nazlie Faridi nazlie.faridi [at] mcgill.ca

      Francois Samuel Lahaie (R5) francois-samuel.lahaie [at] mail.mcgill.ca

R2: Dr. Melissa Pickles Melissa.pickles [at] mcgill.ca

R3: Dr. Simon Ducharme simon.ducharme [at] mcgill.ca and Dr. Tuong Vi Nguyen tuong.v.nguyen [at] mcgill.ca

R4: Dr. Ruben Martins ruben.martins [at] mcgill.ca