University Rankings

Canada’s Top Medical Doctoral University 2021: McGill

One of McGill’s true strengths seems to lie in diversity: 30 per cent of its base is international, and Montreal’s cosmopolitan offerings—cultural institutions, nightlife, art scenes and restaurants—are legion

McGill has made a name for itself as a juggernaut on the research circuit; it has a well-earned international reputation for its faculty’s and students’ trailblazing discoveries. (And it’s certainly got the space to back up its work: 40 per cent of McGill’s campus is dedicated to research facilities.)

In 2019, the school was awarded a hefty $35-million NSERC grant, which was funnelled into more than 100 McGill-led projects. The faculty’s impact is bearing out in the real world, too. In September, the school announced that professor Stephen Yue and Dr. Chen Liang, a researcher at the McGill AIDS Centre and Lady Davis Institute, received an NSERC Alliance COVID-19 grant to produce a cost-effective antiviral coating that could significantly reduce the rate of SARS-CoV-2 transmission on high-touch metallic surfaces (e.g., in schools, office buildings and clinics). Elsewhere on campus, the new McGill Interdisciplinary Initiative in Infection and Immunity (MI4) has assembled more than 250 researchers to explore “every aspect” of COVID-19—and “how to defeat it.”

One of McGill’s true strengths seems to lie in diversity: 30 per cent of its base is international, and Montreal’s cosmopolitan offerings—cultural institutions, nightlife, art scenes and restaurants—are legion. This emphasis on “the best of all worlds” also affects its academic programs. Take the school’s unique M.D., C.M. and Ph.D. program—a seven-year combined doctor of medicine and master of surgery with a doctor of philosophy degree—that teaches medicine as both a clinical practice and an academic discipline. And in June 2019, a US$1.25-million grant established the Indigenous Studies and Community Engagement Initiative, which will operate as eastern Canada’s de facto centre for Indigenous education.

McGill’s Community Health and Social Medicine (CHASM) Incubator, now in its fourth year, offers medical students an opportunity to flex their philanthropic muscles. Student initiatives that address health issues in marginalized communities are awarded $1,000 in addition to guidance from an epidemiologist and other experienced health practitioners.

Wellness has many meanings at McGill, and environmental wellness is a distinct priority. Paired with an aggressive carbon-neutrality mandate, the school’s Sustainability Projects Fund has, to date, allocated more than $8 million to 235 climate-friendly projects. (New this year are 20 more hydroponic towers and 12 new “spin bike gardens” around campus.) Student wellness is also of paramount importance. In 2019, $14 million was allocated to the brand-new Rossy Student Wellness Hub, a “one-stop shop” for mental and physical health resources, counselling and, crucially during the COVID pandemic, peer support.

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