Student Interest Groups

This page lists all student interest groups and associations that are registered with the Manitoba Medical Students’ Association.

The purpose of these student groups is to provide MMSA members with the opportunity to pursue interests related to medicine and/or to connect with peers who have similar interests (medical or not).

To learn more about interest groups, please peruse the information below – feel free to contact interest group executives regarding future events. Attending Interest Group Night (held annually in September) is another opportunity to meet interest group leaders and learn more.

In order to obtain/retain official MMSA interest group status, an annual application must be returned to the Vice-Stick Internal. There are separate applications for new groups and returning groups.

Groups wishing to apply for MMSA funding must also submit a Programming and Budget Proposal by October 1st annually. Once funding decisions have been posted, Interest Group members may submit this form for reimbursement.

For more information, please refer to the MMSA’s Interest Group Policy.

Please contact Bryce Barr or Matthew Kochan to update information in this section.


Anesthesia Interest Group (AIG)

Scott Christiansen

Dedicated to providing University of Manitoba students with a greater understanding of anesthesiology and perioperative medicine. This will be accomplished with educational and networking sessions that are complementary to the medical school curriculum. In addition, the AIG aims to encourage students to consider anesthesiology as a possible career choice. Activities for the 2015/16 year will include clinical skills and procedure stations, interactive talks, and a critical care medicine session.

Canadian Blood Services Student Council (CMDS)

Mohammad Moghareh

The Canadian Blood Services Student Council aims to increase student awareness for the thousands of Canadians requiring blood and blood products each year. We aim to raise blood donations from the University of Manitoba Medicine student population and to increase student knowledge on donating blood by holding multiple blood drives throughout the year.

Choosing Wisely Interest Group (CWIG)

Gurmeet Sohi & Rami Elzayat

We are a group that is part of the national Choosing Wisely campaign which is designed to foster awareness amongst medical students in Canada about unnecessary tests and treatments. This group will help medical students make smart and effective choices to ensure high-quality care.

Christian Medical and Dental Society (CMDS)

Devin Hasanally & Charlenn Skead

We are the Manitoba medical student chapter of the national group. CMDS is an organization of Christian physicians, dentists, and students, each holding an individual membership, who seek to honour God by integrating faith with professional practice. Visit our local FB page by searching UofM CMDS or the national page at CMDS (

College of Medicine Chess Club

Anna Schwartz

We meet once a month at Anna Schwartz’s house for several hours of chess playing at all levels, delicious snacks and camaraderie. Email for more info and to be added to our Chess Club Facebook page.

Creative Writing Group

The U of M Max Rady College of Medicine writers’ group is for anyone aiming to improve their fiction or creative non-fiction writing skills. fiction or creative non-fiction writing skills. We are happy to help with scientific and medical writing as well. The group meets approximately once per month under the direction of full-time Winnipeg writer Maurice Mierau, where members are encouraged (but not required) to share their work for discussion. We discuss writing techniques, exercises, reading, and publishing. All are welcome to attend.

Dermatology Interest Group (DIG)

A group aimed at teaching students about the field of Dermatology and its subspecialties. The goal is to foster an interest in Dermatology as a career and act as a forum for those already interested. Various events will be held throughout the year ranging from guest speakers to skills nights in an attempt to increase awareness and exposure to the field. It is worth noting that due to the high prevalence of skin pathologies in practice today, these events will be beneficial for students interested in almost any speciality.

Emergency Medicine Interest Group (EMIG)

Our goal is to assist students in learning more about emergency medicine. We will organize sessions that will serve as an opportunity to learn more about this specialty as well as to practice emergency medicine related clinical skills. We hope to provide a congenial environment for networking with other students, residents, and faculty.

Family Medicine Interest Group (FMIG)

Leanne Thompson

FMIG provides Med I and Med II students with an appreciation of the benefits and challenges of Family Practice. Throughout the year, FMIG organizes several lunchtime speaker sessions, a Dinner with the Docs and Dinner with the Residents, and a number of suture clinics. FMIG works closely with the Manitoba College of Family Physicians, with the senior chair reporting to the College during its monthly board meetings. FMIG is also active on a national scale, sending representatives to the College of Family Physicians of Canada’s Family Medicine Forum to meet with representatives across the country.

Geriatrics Interest Group (GIG)

Jade Parkes & Danielle Thordarson

We are a group based on the common interest of working in, or learning more about the field of geriatrics. We are involved in networking with similar groups nation wide and organizing opportunities to learn geriatric specific knowledge and skills with our classmates, as well as getting involved in the community! We are a fun group to work with and broadening your understanding of geriatric medicine is an invaluable part of your medical training!

Global Health Interest Group (GHIG)

Ruth Habte & Jaymie Walker

The Global Health Interest Group aims to increase students’ exposure to current global health issues while providing students the opportunity to be involved in a selected group of advocacy campaigns. We also arrange various fundraisers throughout the year to support the surrounding community and local NGOs.

Immigrant and Refugee Health Interest Group (IRHIG)

Lydia Gindy & Julia Mayba

IRHIG aims to promote peer learning of the various health challenges faced by immigrants and refugees locally and nationally, through lunchtime presentations showcasing various local organizations committed to refugee settlement, and an annual collaboration with EAL groups in Wpg for a hands-on clinical simulation event.

Indigenous Health Promotion Group (IHPG)

Amanda Fontes

IHPG provides an opportunity for Indigenous medical students to become involved and create a sense of community, while bringing important health-related information to fellow students. Our group also strives to foster understanding of others when working with Indigenous populations.

Institute for Health Improvement (IHI)

Thomas Hedley

The IHI Chapter is designed to enable committed individuals and organizations to innovate together, share knowledge, and collaborate on the difficult, rewarding work of improving health care. We help promote the IHI Open School Basic Level Certification, work on organizing an inter-professional ward simulation, and this year will be offering a unique inter-professional breastfeeding education program.

Integrative Medicine Group (iMed)

Alternative therapies are becoming more and more popular in the present. iMed’s goal is to expose medical students to these therapies in an effort to foster greater understanding of how they might be relevant to their future practice.

Internal Medicine Interest Group (IMIG)

Nick Hargrove

IMIG is an interest group that provides opportunities to learn about Internal Medicine and the many sub-specialties that are within it. In addition, the group offers events that allow students to learn more about various medical topics and attend clinical skills workshops in the Clinical Learning Simulation Facility (CLSF). We also provide networking opportunities to students by being able to meet professors, physicians, and residents in the Internal Medicine field and as well connect with these individuals for shadowing experiences.
Oncology Rep: Cory Barnes-Wallace –

LGBTTQI* Interest Group

Shayne Reitmeier, Tharuna Abbu & Jack Heard

The LGBTTQI* Interest Group is dedicated to raising awareness about the unique healthcare needs of LGBTTQI* populations and providing practical advice on how to improve quality of care to these communities. We look to empower non-LGBTTQI*-identified students to be respectful and effective allies, while dispelling common stereotypes held about LGBTTQI* individuals. It is our goal to improve collegiality by bringing to light the challenges faced by LGBTTQI*-identified medical students and physicians. We hope to encourage advocacy in the wider community, both medical and non-medical.

Medical Women Interest Group (MWIG)

Lauren Manuel & Julie Semenchuk

This group is focused on mentoring female medical students. Events include evenings with practicing female physicians from a variety of specialties who can provide practical support, advice and encouragement to future female physicians.

Obstetrics and Gynecology Interest Group (OGIG)

The Obstetrics and Gynecology Interest Group is committed to educating medical students about the issues in women’s health that affect all areas of medicine. Women’s health in general is an area of medicine that is quickly growing with various fellowship opportunities already available and even the future possibility of a new “Plus One” program in Family Medicine. OGIG will provide information for those students specifically interested in obstetrics, gynecology, or other aspects of women’s health.

Ophthalmology Interest Group

Eric Gulliver

A student interest group aimed at promoting the field of ophthalmology by providing exposure to relevant clinical skills and information about the residency program. Events including speeches, Q&A sessions, and skills nights will be held throughout the year in order to engage students in this exciting field.

Pediatric Interest Group (PIG)

An interest group designed to expose undergraduate medical students to the exciting field of Pediatrics and Pediatric subspecialties, in addition to providing informational and practical opportunities to explore the specialty as a whole. Through events such as Paediatrician Speed Dating nights, clerkship and residency information sessions and panel discussions, the group attempts to provide relevant information to students about the specialty and subspecialties available, what life as a paediatrician is like and the path one must take to get there. In addition to information, the PIG organizes and executes various other activities and fundraising opportunities related to Paediatrics, such as Bake Sales and holiday appearances on Children’s Hospital’s CHTV.

Physiatry and Sports Medicine Interest Group (PSMIG)

Alex Beaumont & Brett Cameron

An interest group designed to expose undergraduate medical students to two musculoskeletal-oriented fields: Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (aka PMR or Physiatry) and the 2+1 Sports Medicine program within Family Medicine. By providing information sessions as well as practical opportunities to explore these fields, PSMIG acts as a forum for students interested in pursuing a career in Physiatry or Sports Medicine.

Psychiatry Interest Group (PInG)

Charlenn Skead

This interest group provides an exposure to the subspecialties of psychiatry. We facilitate panel discussions by specialists on topics ranging from mood disorders to child and adolescent psychiatry.

Public Health Interest Group (PHIG)

Jackie Beaumont

From prevention and control of communicable diseases such as influenza, HIV and SARS to assessing environmental threats to human health, the public health sector represents a vital component of our health-care system. The Public Health Interest Group aims to promote careers and learning in the field of public health; both through the formal community medicine program, as well as alternatives career paths that include elements of public health and health policy.

Rural Interest Group (RIG)

Zander McKinnon & Sam Frost

RIG is an interest group designed to provide Med I and II students with exposure to Manitoba Rural Medicine (i.e. beyond the Winnipeg Perimeter). RIG does this by planning a variety of events throughout the year to showcase the many opportunities for careers in Rural Medicine. These include lunch presentations by Rural Regional Health Authorities, dinners with rural clinicians (both general and specialist), and RIG Trips(!). We also assist in planning Rural Week exposures at the end of Med I.

Student Advocacy Committee (SAC)

Zeenib Kohja & Camille Glidden

A collaborative committee formed by representatives from the Government Affairs & Advocacy Committee (GAAC) as well as Global Health Advocacy (GHA), SAC represents the interests and concerns of medical students to all levels of government. Annually, SAC organizes a delegation of medical students to travel to Ottawa for Lobby Day. Additionally, SAC organizes opportunities for students to become better advocates at a local and international level.

Student Interest Group Neurology (SIGN)

Julie Semenchuk

SIGN aims to stimulate medical student’s interests in neurology and make them aware of opportunities within the field. SIGN, being the University of Manitoba chapter of the American Academy of Neurology, looks to accomplish this by creating an environment of like-minded individuals and provide the encouragement and opportunities to pursue their neurology based interests.

Medical Students with Disabilities Interest Group

Anna Schwartz

Our primary aim is to empower medical students with disabilities through mentorship within the medical and general community.  Most physicians will work alongside a colleague with a disability – this group opens a dialogue aimed at understanding, respect and advocacy in the health care community. We welcome both students with disabilities, as well as their supporters, to this thought-provoking interest group.

Faculty advisor: Dr. James Butler, radiation oncologist and associate professor, Cancer Care Manitoba

Wilderness Medicine Interest Group

Stefan Cowtan

The wilderness medicine interest group (WMIG) will provide experience and education for those interested in emergency and wilderness medicine, with emphasis on outdoors and low resource environments. Our goal is to support and inform students regarding careers related to wilderness medicine, teach practical skills, and promote further education.