Reprinted from Share News Online
Milliken Mills High School in Markham is Dr. Kurt MacDonald’s alma mater.
It might have well been Jamaica’s Kingston College.
His father, Doug MacDonald and late uncle, Maurice MacDonald, were the president and vice-president, respectively, of the Kingston College Old Boys Association’s Toronto chapter and their late father – Edward MacDonald – taught geography and math at the North St. school.
Dr. Kurt MacDonald attended many KC functions in Toronto, including the annual awards gala where he was celebrated last Saturday night.
“This is tremendous and something I didn’t expect even though I grew up in the KC tradition,” he said. “My KC family members taught me to strive for excellence and provided the template for me to be successful. I really appreciated that.”
MacDonald graduated from the University of Western Ontario six years ago with a medical science degree and from Columbia University in 2013 with his doctorate in medicine. He was the only Canadian graduate in his class of 155 students.
He is doing his residency at New York University’s Langone Medical Centre and at Bellevue Hospital.
MacDonald said he was turned on to science in high school.
“I did very well in that subject area and it was an option for me,” he said. “When I got a first-hand look volunteering in hospitals and seeing the work that various physicians do, I realized how impactful that work is. Besides helping people, you get to do a lot of interesting things in medicine.”
Specializing in emergency medicine, MacDonald completes his residency in 2017.
“I will look at my options at that time, but I am leaning on returning to Canada,” he said. “I might stay in New York for a little while to build my skills and hone my craft. Once I am comfortable, I will be coming back north.”
Started 42 years ago, the local KC chapter has raised thousands of dollars for various projects, including the refurbishment of the library and the breakfast and scholarship programs.
Jamaica’s education minister, Ronald Thwaites, was the keynote speaker at the event.
“I am here to encourage the group and affirm what they do,” he said. “They are a vital part of the Jamaican education enterprise. And we couldn’t do without them. They have a right to a voice in educational policy and also to help us to ensure, by mentorship and example, that the hopes and future of a generation now in school are assured. I naturally would love to see more material assistance to their alma maters and their presence, when they are in Jamaica, could be very reinforcing to school administrators and students alike.”Clarke Richardson Collegiate Institute graduate, Livingston Dunkley, who is enrolled in Durham College’s electrical engineering technician program, was presented with the Maurice MacDonald memorial bursary.
It was created to honour the memory of the KC alumnus, who passed away six years ago after a lengthy illness.
Established in 1925 by Rev. Percival Gibson, KC has produced many outstanding alumni, including retired Ontario court judge, Eric Lindsay; former West Indies cricketer-turned-TV analyst, Michael Holding; former Jamaica consul general in Toronto, Stewart Stephenson; lawyer, Churchill Neita; mathematician/theoretical biologist, Dr. Lloyd Demetrius, who is best known for the discovery of the evolutionary entropy concept which is a statistical parameter that characterizes Darwinian fitness in models of the evolution of life history and late Olympian, Dr. Lennox Miller.
By RON FANFAIR