“Shortly after completing my MBA, the opportunity to work at the TransMedTech Institute arose and I jumped at the chance, as the position encompassed all my interests, academic research, healthcare and administration.”Karine Genest
Karine Genest has joined the TransMedTech Institute’s team from the very beginning, and over the years has contributed to its establishment and sustainability. As Director – Operations and Communications, she is an outstanding orchestral conductor.
Tell us about your background:
Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve always been drawn to the healthcare field.
After graduating from college with a degree in health sciences, I enrolled in a bachelor’s degree in biology with an aim to go into medicine eventually. I loved the human biology courses, but I was a little less interested in the fern life cycle courses…
After a year in biology, I changed programs to study kinesiology, as I’ve always been very athletic. I really liked my three years of bachelor’s studies in kinesiology and decided to pursue at the master’s level, more specifically in biomechanics where I studied muscle force patterns in trunk muscles during isometric efforts.
I then worked as a research professional at the Centre d’action en prévention et réadaptation de l’incapacité au travail (CAPRIT) at the Université de Sherbrooke in Longueuil where I coordinated a CIHR strategic training program on disability prevention. This program was transferred to the University of Toronto, where once again, I grabbed to opportunity to move to Toronto to implement the program there. I returned to Quebec after two years and went back to work at CAPRIT at the Université de Sherbrooke in Longueuil as a research professional, where I coordinated research projects on mental disorders, social economy enterprises and work environment.
I then continued my career at the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé (FRQS) as a program manager where I was in charge of various grant programs. During my time at FRQS, I also completed a part-time MBA to further my knowledge and skills in administration.
Shortly after completing my MBA, the opportunity to work at the TransMedTech Institute arose and I jumped at the chance, as the position I applied for brought together all my interests – academic research, healthcare and administration.
What is your mandate at the TransMedTech Institute?
As Director of Operations and Communications, I’m in charge of finance, administration, reporting and other related tasks. I also occasionally act as an IT technician for my colleagues.
Describe a day when you just had the best day of your life workwise. What was is about that day that made you so happy?
It is when we have been working on a file or project for months and finally completed the tasks. Bringing a major project to completion as a team, despite the pitfalls and unforeseen circumstances, represent for me an immense sense of accomplishment! I would add that another very satisfying work day is when I’m immersed in creating complex Excel spreadsheets, such as when my formulas work and all numbers add up!
What are your values at work and in life in general?
Kindness, respect, openness, sincerity and mutual support. I would also add coherence between words and actions.
There are different ways of looking at success, for you, what would it be?
For me, success means having done my best and having made a positive contribution to the realization of a project or task. It’s a feeling of accomplishment and well-being where I feel that my efforts have paid off. This can be at work, but also in my personal life, such as sport or a renovation project.
What job did you dream of doing when you as a child?
To work as a doctor in the emergency department where the action is!
A person who inspires you and why?
Many people inspire me, including my parents, my sister, my friends and colleagues. I’d especially like to mention my friend Alex, whom I met during my MBA program. A hard worker like no other I’ve ever come across, with exceptional human and professional qualities. Empathy, listening, vision, honesty, open-mindedness, determination, to name but a few… A very inspiring person!
What book(s) would you recommend?
Docteur Irma (all 3 volumes) by Pauline Gill. This is the story (perhaps romanticized, but nonetheless captivating) of Dr. Irma Levasseur , co-founder of CHU Sainte-Justine in Montreal and Hôpital de l’Enfant-Jésus in Quebec City. https://www.quebec-amerique.com/livres/litterature/series/docteure-irma
I also recently started listening to season 3 of Oliver Bernard’s podcast Dérives: Les secrets de la « mafia médicale ». It’s excellent and fascinating. Perfect for listening to on my way to work riding the REM or the metro! https://ici.radio-canada.ca/ohdio