GEMgirls and myself were invited for a coffee chat at the Thrive Medical Clinic. During the coffee chat, GEMgirls had an opportunity to visit a workplace where we could ask questions to the employees about their career and educational paths and get an inside look at what a medical career is like. GEMgirls saw that a medical career may seem prescribed, but it’s really anything but. As a medical professional, while helping others, you can still express your own individuality and unique character.

Your office, your look
Compared to the usual bland and boring look of many clinics in Toronto, Thrive is a very beautiful office. The walls were a sky blue colour and had magnificent paintings on the walls. This proved to us that a business, such as a medical clinic, can be aesthetically pleasing if you choose for it to be.

Women-run business
Thrive Medical Clinic was co-founded by Dr. Kristin Heins, Naturopath and Dr. Jennifer Wise, Chiropractor. The co-founders were joined by Dr. Chelsea Sherrington, Psychologist for the career chat. These women demonstrated to us that women can run their own clinical office successfully. We were definitely inspired by their drive and their focus to satisfy their clients.

You decide what to do for your undergraduate degree
For the girls who are interested in the medical field, the one question they all had was, “What should I study during my under grad?” The answer is that you actually do not need to study science or medicine during post-secondary. What counts is studying what you like and a subject that will help you to receive high marks. That’s because medical schools will be looking at your overall GPA, not just what courses you took.

Pursue your passion
Throughout high school and university, Dr. Kristin Heins Naturopath, was preparing to become a lawyer. It was when she was preparing for her LSAT that she realized how much she didn’t want to become a lawyer. She expressed to the GEMgirls that she was curious about naturopathy, as it was one of her greatest passions. That was a great message to us, “it is better to follow your passions than give in to what people around you think you should do”

The GEMgirls and myself enjoyed our time at Thrive as we listened to each woman speak, while drinking hot coffee and eating soft brownies. Thrive coffee chat was a great experience because of the new things we learned and the stories we will be able to share with other girls too.


Selina McCallum is a GEMgirl in the 2014/15 cohort,  student at Marc Garneau C.I. and a Digital Journalism Intern for GEM.