Teaching Team

The MED YSP program delivers university-level science classes in an accessible and engaging manner. In order to ensure the quality of delivery, the process of selecting instructors is rigorous to ensure that only those individuals with the necessary skill, experience, and passion, for sharing their knowledge and inspiring a younger generation of Canadian students, are hired.

Instructors come from diverse academic backgrounds that span the fields of human biology, microbiology, biochemistry, physiology to toxicology and allow instructors to work collaboratively during the program to deliver the four one-week-long modules. Lectures, labs, demonstrations, discussion panels, and informal conversations are employed to educate the students in the knowledge and mechanics of science. The YSP philosophy is to have inquisitive young minds from across Canada come together at a world-class institution where they can work with and teach students the beauty of science.

For the 2024 MED YSP program we have a diverse team of passionate educators: Anika Kisana, Artemisa Dinaj, Calvin Watts, Eric Chiu, Erika Teeter, Ivy Pham, Javid Guliyev, Josephine Elder, Landon See, Lilian Zhai, Raunak Sharma, Rama Upadhye, Sarah Kay Eves, Sonia Spitzig, Tam Tran and Artur K. Jakubowski as Program Coordinator.

Click here to see past team members.

Anika Kisana

Anika is entering her second year of medical school, but finished her undergraduate studies at UTM with a biotechnology specialist and chemistry minor. What Anika loves the most about MEDYSP is the community that it brings for learning and creativity, as well as the opportunity to be immersed to various interdisciplinary fields of science. Here’s a secret about Anika: she’s a major foodie-and her favourite food is Korean BBQ. 

Artemisa Dinaj

Artemisa is entering her third year of undergraduate studies, specializing in pharmaceutical chemistry and minoring in immunology. She is excited to create a fun learning experience and atmosphere for everyone joining MEDYSP, and she cannot wait to show her tips and tricks during labs. Fun fact about Artemisa: she has been figure skating since she was eight and is also a coach and skating instructor at UofT!

Calvin Watts

Calvin is entering his third year of undergraduate studies with a double major in biochemistry and immunology, and a minor in physiology. He is excited to dive into MEDYSP and share his interdisciplinary knowledge with everyone, while also creating enjoyable memories along the way. An interesting fact about Calvin is his passion for puzzles, particularly speed cubing, and his love for playing jazz on the trumpet. 

Erika Teeter

Erika is entering her fourth year as a Neuroscience specialist, majoring in Psychology. She loves everything related to the brain, but also enjoys the wide array of science topics covered during the program. She looks forward to the opportunity to teach and inspire young prospective students. While Erika no longer does competitive gymnastics, she now coaches young athletes and enjoys teaching them how to flip! 

Ivy Pham

Ivy just completed her undergraduate degree with a Physiology major, and Immunology and Psychology minors. She will be starting her first year of her Bachelor of nursing. She is looking forward to gaining many new skills and getting to know new people at MEDYSP. Fun fact about Ivy: she has Morse code memorized, although she is not the fastest at deciphering it.

Javid Guliyev

Javid is entering his fourth year, with a double major in Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, and a minor in Immunology. He is excited to share the knowledge he has gained thus far throughout his degree in a laboratory setting, from an interdisciplinary perspective. Additionally, Javid greatly enjoys oil painting, and has been an avid swimmer since childhood. 

Josephine Elder

Josephine is entering her fourth year, majoring in Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, and minoring in Chemistry. Her favourite part of MEDYSP is having the opportunity to share her passion for science with younger students and inspire a new generation of scientists. In her spare time, she loves to dance, play piano and go downhill skiing. 

Landon See

Landon is entering his fourth year, specializing in Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, majoring in Biochemistry, and minoring in Science, Technology, and Society. This is his second year as a MED YSP instructor, and he is very excited to continue to inspire young, amazing scientists and work with them to create a fun, enjoyable, and unforgettable program. Outside of the lab, Landon loves to play hockey, hang out with his kitten, and play word games like Crosswords and Connections! 

Lilian Zhai

Lilian recently graduated with a Specialist in Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology. She was a former Med YSP student in 2018 and returned this year as an instructor, eager to inspire students in science, just as she had been in the past. Outside of the classroom, she enjoys the art of sleeping and exploring the endless possibilities of coffee (ask her for coffee shop recommendations!). 

Rama Upadhye

Rama is entering her third year, pursuing a double major in Economics and Mathematics. She has a keen interest in the intersection between mathematics and various fields of medicine. To her, the most exciting part of MEDYSP is the opportunity to inspire students and foster their passion for science and creativity. She looks forward to helping students discover their own sparks of inspiration. And here’s a fun fact about Rama—she loves cats and enjoys playing the electric guitar!

Raunak Sharma

Raunak graduated from the University of Guelph majoring in Bio-Medical Science and is entering his second year of dental school. His favourite part of MEDYSP is being able to share his knowledge with eager high school students and help them explore potential career paths in science! He is super excited to meet all the bright minds of the future and see them engage in the interactive labs. And don't tell anybody but Raunak knows how to play 7 instruments 

Sarah Kay Eves

Sarah Kay recently graduated with an Honours Bachelor of Science degree, specializing in Forensic Anthropology. She will be entering her MSc at UofT in the fall to research age estimation using the scapula! Her favourite part of MEDYSP is seeing the students’ enthusiasm when a concept finally clicks for them. And don’t tell anyone, but she’s rewatched all 8 seasons of The Vampire Diaries four times...

Shung-Yuet (Eric) Chiu

Eric recently finished his Specialist degree in Pharmacology and Biomedical Toxicology with a minor in Immunology. His favourite part of MEDYSP is getting to show how fun experiments can be and how everyone can benefit from a little bit of science in their lives. As a side hobby, Eric is part of a Minecraft survival server with his friends – he loves to build but hates mining for materials (will happily “borrow” from his friends). 

Sonya Spitzig

Sonya is entering her third year specializing in Biochemistry, majoring in Global Health, and minoring in Immunology. She is super excited for MEDYSP, giving her the opportunity to share laboratory information/techniques and life experiences to help incoming university students! Fun fact: Sonya grew up in small town Ontario (a town called Walkerton which has <5,000 people) and played hockey there from age 3-17! 

Tam Tran

Tam graduated this year with a double major in Physiology and Psychology. She believes she is now qualified to psychoanalyze people so feel free to ask her. She is excited to share her enjoyment for science through lab activities and empower students to use creative, scientific approaches to explore their curiosities. Fun fact: she is (moderately) ambidextrous and can write and use chopsticks with both hands.  

We are hiring !

Do you love to teach science and medical concepts? Are you the next Bill Gal/Guy? Join us this summer to teach youth from across Canada and the World.