The CVMA Teacher of the Year Award is presented annually to a teacher at each of the Canadian veterinary colleges. The recipient, selected by veterinary students, is a teacher who inspired them most by their approach to the subject, teaching methods, and enthusiasm.
Meet the 2022 CVMA Teacher of the Year Award Recipients:
Dr. Mitchell Carr
Dr. Mitchell Carr is a lecturer and clinician at the Atlantic Veterinary College at the University of Prince Edward Island. He works with the Community Practice team and teaches pre-clinical lectures and laboratories for veterinary students.
Dr. Carr is an alumnus of the Atlantic Veterinary College (Class of 2018). After working in predominately small animal practice after graduation, he joined the Atlantic Veterinary College in late 2021. He takes pride in providing services that match client needs while providing quality care for the patient — skills he learned through fantastic mentorship after graduation.
Dr. Carr’s advice to new graduates: “Veterinary life is complicated and exhausting. Being on-call and alone can be daunting. You’ve got this! Try to surround yourself with mentors and colleagues who can help. If you’re stuck with the on-call phone, always let it go to voicemail; 99% of the time, you’ve got the time to take 2–3 minutes to open a book and refresh your memory. You’ll look and sound like you’ve been doing this for “years.” It’s saved my sanity many nights. Also, don’t forget to find things that make you belly laugh. Life is worth it.”
Dr. Mouhamadou Diaw
Dr. Mouhamadou Diaw, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACT is an Associate Professor in theriogenology at the University of Montreal. He graduated from the École Inter-États des Sciences et Médecine Vétérinaires in Dakar (Senegal) and worked for several years in mixed private practice.
After spending a breeding season at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, Lexington, Kentucky, he completed a residency in theriogenology at the University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida. After completing his residency, Dr. Diaw was a lecturer in theriogenology at North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina. Dr. Diaw is particularly interested in advanced reproductive techniques.
Dr. Diaw’s advice to students: “To the students, I would say that they will encounter obstacles but that nothing is insurmountable; they should not give up but rather learn from the situations they will be confronted by in order to better progress, and never forget that after the night, always comes the day.”
Dr. Andrea Sanchez
Dr. Andrea Sanchez graduated from the University of Murcia, Spain in 2011 after which her Canadian adventure started. She was accepted into an anesthesiology residency and graduate (DVSc) program at the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC).
After graduating in 2015, Dr. Sanchez worked in a private practice for a year while she studied for her anesthesia boards. After successful completion of American College of Veterinary Anesthesia and Analgesia boards, she was presented with an opportunity to follow her passion for teaching and began her career as an Anesthesiology Professor at OVC in 2017.
Today, she is fortunate to be able to work with some of the best specialists and researchers in their fields and contribute to the growth of amazing future veterinarians.
Dr. Sanchez’s advice for students: “I think the best advice I can give the students for the years to come is to follow these three rules: Never stop learning, support each other, and have fun. The best veterinarians I know are the ones who use every opportunity to learn something new and improve themselves even after years in their field. We also know that our profession is going through a rough patch right now, so make sure that you all become part of a strong support system and look out for each other. And of course... always remember to have fun along the way!”
Dr. Koji Aoki
Dr. Koji Aoki is an Assistant Professor of small animal surgery at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM). He received his veterinary degree in Japan and went to UC Davis and Michigan State University for research and clinical training. He then completed a small animal rotating internship at University of Minnesota and surgery residency at University of Saskatchewan. He became a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons in 2019.
Dr. Aoki received a Clinical Professor of the Year teaching award at WCVM in 2021.
Dr. Aoki has passion for any kind of challenging surgeries, but his primary focus is joint replacement and minimally invasive orthopedic surgery. In his current role, he teaches various courses to DVM students in all years at WCVM.
He is very grateful for all the opportunities he received in Canada.
Although he is not sure if he is the best person to give advice to students, his best advice is: “Find a specialty you love, then you will be loved.”
Dr. Angelica Galezowski
Dr. Angelica Galezowski graduated from the University of Winnipeg with her BSc in 2003, then obtained her DVM from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) at the University of Saskatchewan in 2007.
Dr. Galezowski entered a 3-year clinical pathology residency program at the WCVM and became a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists (ACVP) in 2010. She joined the Veterinary Diagnostics Services (VDS) pathology team in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 2010, and in 2013, was appointed the diagnostic lead for the clinical pathology laboratory.
Dr. Galezowski joined the University of Calgary — Faculty of Veterinary Medicine (UCVM) in 2017 as an Assistant Professor where she teaches in all 4 years of the program, including the Clinical Pathology, Pathologic Basis of Disease, Clinical Skills, Professional Skills, and Clinical Presentations courses and 4th year clinical rotations. She served on the ACVP Board Examination Committee for several years and in September 2022, was appointed Associate Dean Student Experience at UCVM.
Dr. Galezowski’s advice to students: “You are infinitely capable! Give yourself some grace when you don’t immediately understand ‘x’ concept or perform ‘y’ clinical skill with ease. Lifelong learning is a marathon, not a race. So be kind to yourself! You got this.”