McMaster University

McMaster University

Faculty of
Health Sciences

McMaster team takes prizes in Canadian University Life Sciences Challenge

Published: March 19, 2015
2015 Life Sciences Challenge winners
From left: Alexander Ball, professor of pathology and molecular medicine of the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine; McMaster Bachelor of Health Sciences students Michael Xie, Jake Hong, Victor Kang and Dave Nidumolu; and Bruce Wainman, director of the Education Program in Anatomy. The students earned first place in the anatomy and physiology categories of the Canadian University Life Sciences Challenge.

A group of four second-year Bachelor of Health Sciences students from McMaster University who haven't even finished their anatomy and physiology course took firsts in those categories at the Canadian University Life Sciences Challenge.

The team of Jake Hong, Dave Nidumolu, Michael Xie and Victor Kang finished first for those categories out of 18 teams in the annual competition hosted by the University of Toronto recently.

"We felt extremely surprised that our knowledge as a second-year team could compete and surpass that of fourth-year students," said Xie, speaking on behalf of his team. "I think this speaks to how effective McMaster's anatomy and physiology program actually is."

Xie said his group did especially well on the problem-solving questions in the later rounds.

"After talking to some of the students we met, we realized that the depth of our anatomy curriculum, the focus on problem-solving, and the opportunity to work with real specimens isn't that common in Ontario," said Xie.

"It is a credit to these students that they were able to compete and win against senior students from Canada's top universities," said their instructor Alexander Ball, a professor of pathology and molecular medicine of the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine. "They will not have even completed the anatomy and physiology course until April."

Ball added: "The highlight of my day is to be in the anatomy lab for questions and answers with students of this calibre. We only provide the information and experience. It is the students who deserve the credit for taking themselves to this high level of achievement."

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