NOSM University - Urology - Thunder Bay

2024 R-1 Main Residency Match - first iteration
CMG Stream for CMG

Last approved on November 29, 2023

Summary of changes

Approximate Quota:


Accreditation status : Accredited

Provincial Criteria

Dr. Walid Shahrour
955 Oliver Road 
Thunder Bay, Ontario, P7B 5E1

Program Contacts

Sara Cover
Program Coordinator

Shawne Neubauer
Program Coordinator

Important Information


November 10, 7pm EST

Join the NOSM University Urology Team and learn details about our new Urology Program provided by program leadership and faculty.

There will be a presentation as well as time for Q&A.

Join Now


The Program has an intake of two residents per year, who will be based in Thunder Bay. The educational model of the Program, from its inception, is the competence by design (CBD) model of training.  

NOSM University Urology residents will train in three main centres: Thunder Bay, Greater Sudbury, and the Greater Toronto Area. Each centre has unique features and patient populations that will expose residents to diverse patient populations that span across the province.  Residents will complete the majority of their rotations at the two main teaching sites: Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (TBRHSC), located in Thunder Bay; and Health Sciences North (HSN), located in Sudbury. An inter-institutional agreement with the University of Toronto will provide specific mandatory training rotations to supplement the residents’ exposure to the disciplines that the population in Northern Ontario cannot consistently provide them.  

Northern Ontario, a large landmass with approximately 800 000 residents, has a higher proportion of the population that identify as Indigenous (13%) and Francophone (16%) compared to the overall proportion in the province.  Furthermore, approximately 40% of the population live in rural communities. The opportunity for community and rural experience is a major component of resident training at NOSM University and is one of the aspects which will set this Program apart from others in Canada. 

The Greater Toronto Area (GTA), on the other hand, the largest metropolitan centre in Canada, encompasses a diverse population, including several ethnic and social backgrounds. While there are only a few rotations in Toronto, because of the large population, residents will be exposed to another dynamic learning environment which is unique to a metropolitan setting and learn from physicians that are practicing within the benefits and challenges experienced in a metropolitan centre. 

There are numerous communities located in Northern Ontario that do not have direct access to urological services. The program will help learners understand the needs and strategies to get urological care to these patients, including those in indigenous communities. The Program includes experiences in regional hospitals where residents will go to these smaller communities to perform clinics and urological procedures. To increase residents' awareness of the community hospital urologic patient population, residents will be given the opportunity to interact further through receiving consultation from peripheral communities during calls and participating in Teleconsultation clinics. 

NOSM University will provide housing for Block placements and the Urology program will reimburse residents for short term housing and transport for residents in those clinical settings.


COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

Please be aware the Ministry of Health has mandated all hospital and health care employers establish, implement and ensure compliance with a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy. The Ministry directive can be reviewed here. Residents matched to any Ontario residency program must ensure they are able to comply with the Ministry directive in order to start training July 1, 2024.

It is important to understand this is an evolving issue. You are required to review Provincial, Hospital, University and Program information to ensure you are in continued compliance with directives.

General Instructions

Program application language: English

Applications will be accepted through the CaRMS R-1 Main Residency Match application process.

Supporting Documentation / Information

Canadian citizenship
CaRMS partners with third-party organizations to verify your citizenship or permanent resident status. If your status is verified by one of these organizations, you will not need to provide citizenship documents in your application. If your citizenship status is not verified, you must provide one of the documents listed below.
Document must be notarized/certified
Submit one of the following documents to verify your Canadian citizenship:
• Canadian Birth Certificate or Act of Birth
• Certificate of Canadian Citizenship
• Confirmation of Permanent Residence in Canada
• Passport page showing Canadian Citizenship
• Canadian Permanent Resident Card (both sides of card)
• Canadian Citizenship Card (both sides of card)

IMPORTANT NOTICE: As per the Ontario Provincial Eligibility Criteria, if you are submitting a Canadian Birth Certificate or Act of Birth, or Confirmation of Permanent Residence in Canada document, you MUST submit a government issued photo I.D. to accompany your citizenship documentation.

Reference documents
Number requested: 3

Letters of Reference must be completed by clinical teachers and/or faculty who have a reasonable knowledge of you, either through close association in clinical training situations or as your faculty advisor. If possible, one or more letters from a faculty member in Urology is helpful but not required.

Additional documents
Medical School Transcript 

Your medical school transcript can be submitted through one of the methods below:

  1. Obtain your medical transcript from your school and upload it directly to your CaRMS Online account. Follow your school’s policy regarding accessing or requesting your transcript;
  2. Ask your medical school to upload your medical transcript through their CaRMS Undergraduate Portal account; or
  3. International (IMGs) and United States (USMGs) medical graduates can transfer their transcript from their account.

Medical Student Performance Record 

For current year Canadian medical graduates (CMGs), there is no action required from you. Your medical school will automatically submit your MSPR to CaRMS on your behalf for you to assign.
If your MSPR is in a language other than the program language of English or French, you are required to have the document translated.

Custom Résumé / CV 

[Note: Photograph is used as memory aid only]

Appreciated for memory aid.

Personal Letter 
Word count
Minimum : None
Maximum : 1000

A personal letter (maximum 1000 words) should focus on the following:

  • Your career interests / goals

  • experiences that led to your interest in urology ;
  • aspects of the NOSM U Urology Residency Program that interest you;
  • connections or personal qualities that make you an ideal candidate for training /practice in Northern and rural settings;
  • how you anticipate this program will assist you in becoming an excellent urologist;
  • your greatest challenge if you are accepted into this program;
  • additional information about yourself that should be considered by the Selection Panel.

If your transcript/CV indicates academic difficulty, failure(s), repeat of a year or any gaps in your education or work history please attach a supplementary statement to the beginning of your Personal Letter entitled "Transcript/CV Addendum" explaining the above.

Optional - will be reviewed

Review Process

Applications submitted after file review has opened on December 2, 2023

Supporting documents (excluding letters of reference) that arrive after file review has opened  on  December 2, 2023

Letters of reference that arrive after the unmasking date on December 2, 2023

Two different members of the resident selection committee will review and score each applicant file, including reference letters. The scoring system takes into consideration the selection criteria outlined below. These scores will be aggregated and reviewed by the selection committee. Unfortunately, we are not able to interview all of the applicants and we will offer interviews to the most competitive candidates based on these reviews.    



  • January 27, 2024
  • January 28, 2024
Program will notify all applicants through CaRMS Online and will send email invitations directly to applicants selected for an interview.
Candidates who meet the selection criteria will be invited for an interview.

Candidates will participate in two panel-style interviews virtually.

This interview will be approximately 20 minutes. Interview teams will be comprised of faculty members including the Program Director and current NOSM U Urology faculty. The program coordinator will also be available as a resource throughout the day.

A program overview will be provided electronically prior to the interview, by either the Program Director or a faculty member or both. Additional information will be included in the emailed interview offer and confirmation package.

Selection Criteria

Candidates for the program will be based on the following criteria

  • demonstrated interest in and knowledge of Urology
  • strength of academic record (performance, medical knowledge and clinical abilities)
  • strength of references
  • strong interpersonal, communication and collaborative skills
  • evidence of self-directed learning, reflective practice, a high standard of professionalism and resiliency
  • strong desire to train in northern clinical settings as well as tertiary hospitals

These factors are assessed through the following

  • a personal interview
  • the review of the personal letter
  • the review of performance assessments from clinical rotations in medical school, particularly during rotations with emphasis on urology and/or electives  
  • the review of letters of reference

Program goals

Our mission is to educate residents who have a strong surgical and procedural aptitude to become competent specialists in urology, prepared to practice in any setting, including rural and northern communities.

Our goal is to deliver a comprehensive hands-on curriculum that's designed to ensure that all of the urology CanMEDS competencies outlined by the Royal College are met, thus allowing our residents to acquire and hone all the necessary skills/knowledge to develop into highly competent, professional, and skilled urologists.

Selection process goals

Through our selection process, our Program aims to identify candidates who have a strong academic history with demonstrated competence and interest in urology (e.g. surgical rotations, electives, scholarly activities, conference involvement and other related work or life experiences). We are seeking candidates who possess superior clinical communication skills and have the ability to relate to patients, their families, and caregivers with compassion, empathy, sensitivity and humility.

We are looking for candidates who possess the ability and willingness to work collaboratively (within and across professional domains) in a team dynamic to secure optimal patient outcomes, while exemplifying the highest standards of professional behavior -- inclusive of responsibility, respect, and self- awareness.

Our program and NOSM university value the importance of equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) in residency education, and achieving a diverse and inclusive group of residents is a goal of our selection process.

We are also looking to identify candidates who would be a good fit for our program. Candidates who are well suited to our program are those with a strong surgical and procedural aptitude, who can adapt and thrive in a hands-on, distributed rural residency program that requires flexibility and some travel away from their primary location of residence.

We also believe that candidates who are resilient, can prioritize their personal well-being and work-life balance, and are also committed to self-directed learning and reflective practice, continuing professional development, and quality improvement, are well-suited to our program. Through our selection process we aim to identify and successfully match candidates who possess these attributes as well.

File review process

Review team composition : The file review team consists of program faculty. Each application will be reviewed and scored independently by a combination of 2-4 program faculty members.

Average number of applications received by our program in the last five years : 0 - 50
This is the inaugural year of the Urology Program, and as such, these statistics are currently not available

Average percentage of applicants offered interviews : 0 - 25 %
This is the inaugural year of the Urology Program, and as such, these statistics are currently not available

Evaluation criteria :
File component Criteria
CV Academic & work background/experiences, personal/professional achievements/awards, volunteerism
Electives Urology/Surgical elective(s), diverse range relevant to the discipline, rural and/or northern an asset
Examinations We do not evaluate this file component.
Extra-curricular An asset to demonstrate work-life balance and wellness, personal interests. Include in CV
Leadership skills Any leadership roles held throughout training should be outlined in the CV
MSPRs Patient interactions, surgical rotation competencies, academic/personal/professionalism concerns
Personal letters Practice goals, interest/knowledge in urology. & our program, personal and northern/rural
Reference documents Commitment to surgery., performance, knowledge/clinical skills, character/attitude towards learning
Research/Publications Past achievements/successes and interest in participating in future scholarly activity
Transcripts Strength of academic record, any red flags/concerns
Other file component(s) If any part of your application indicates academic difficulty, failure(s), repeat of a year or any gaps in your education or work history, a supplementary statement at the END of your Personal Letter is required. Please entitle your statement as "Transcript/CV Addendum", explaining the above.

Elective criteria

We are looking for and rewarding applicants who have completed a broad range of electives including in our discipline.
We do not require applicants to have done onsite electives.

Interview process

Interview format :

We do not re-schedule interviews for applicants after we have completed the scheduling process.

Interview evaluation criteria :
Interview components Criteria
Collaboration skills Demonstrated ability to work well in a team setting/multidisciplinary environment
Collegiality Personable, respectful towards others, values the importance of a supportive/collegial atmosphere
Communication skills Able to reflect and communicate responses clearly and concisely, can communicate well with others
Health advocacy We do not formally evaluate this component during the interview
Interest in the discipline Genuine passion for urology., knowledgeable, competent, clear understanding of our specialty.
Interest in the program Knowledgeable about our program, training sites, northern Ontario patient populations and challenge
Leadership skills Qualities such as: proactive/takes initiative, accountable, innovative, motivated and goal-oriented
Professionalism Conducts themselves in a professional manner, self-aware, unbiased, morally/ethically responsible
Scholarly activities We do not formally evaluate this component during the interview
Other interview component(s) Problem-Solving Skills: Overcoming challenges, conflict resolution, ability to rationalize.

Knowledge/Skills: Ability to apply clinical knowledge, assess, plan, and take appropriate action.

Personal Attributes: Demeanor, personality, attitude towards learning.

Time management: Ability to make good use of time/plan accordingly.

Information gathered outside of CaRMS application

Specifically, we may consider:

Ranking process

The behavior(s) exhibited below during the interview process may prevent an applicant from being ranked by our program :

Program Highlights

  • Early surgical skill training
  • Individualized educational goals focused on anatomy and surgical procedures; 24 hour in-hospital access to full body cadavers Unparalleled preceptor support from knowledgeable surgeons committed to practicing in Northern Ontario
  • Early integration as a key member of a health care team, dedicated to professionalism, high quality patient care and excellent medical education Exposure to the culture and social fabric of Francophone and Indigenous communities
  • Opportunity to participate in research under expert guidance
  • Opportunity for learning experiences in a range of Northern urban and rural clinical settings Funding available for research, professional development and conferences
  • Provision of financial support for resident travel to and from core clinical placements away from the home base and all mandatory educational activities at non home base locations
  • Dedicated career planning

Program Curriculum

This residency program is for 5 years.

Program length of training does not exceed the Royal College or College of Family Physicians of Canada standard.

The educational model of the Program, from its inception, will be the competence by design (CBD) model of training.


The program includes core rotations in urology and subspecialty rotations selected to incorporate a diversity of experience and proficiency in subspecialty areas that are integral to community based practice, but less commonly emphasized in traditional urology residency programs.

Based on the resident`s personal learning plan, the content, sequence of training, and the schedule of movement between teaching sites may vary. The majority of rotations will be completed in Thunder Bay with rotations in Sudbury and Toronto, depending on preceptor and clinical resources. Residents are required to provide their own vehicle.

Sample Rotation Plan (rotations in Thunder Bay or northern hospitals unless noted otherwise; blocks are 4 weeks in length)


General Surgery - 4 block Plastics - 1 block

Vascular - 1 blocks

Nephrology - 1 Blocks

Transplant – 1 block (Toronto)

Trauma – 2 blocks

Urology – 3 blocks



Research – 1 blocks

ICU – 2 blocks

Urology – 6 blocks (Sudbury)

Urology - 4 blocks (Thunder Bay)



Research – 1 block

Pediatric Urology – 3 blocks (Toronto)

Urology – 9 blocks (6 blocks Thunder Bay & 3 Blocks Sudbury)



Infertility – 1 block  (Toronto)

Research – 1 block



Elective- 1 block

Urology - 10 blocks (6 blocks Thunder Bay & 4 blocks Sudbu

Urology Clinic – 1 block

Urology - 12 blocks  (6 blocks Sudbury & 6 blocks Thunder Bay)


Academic Half Days 

Residents will have protected time to attend weekly academic sessions. Senior resident(s), fellows, or faculty will prepare and present material in preparation for the Royal College Exams and from Campbell Walsh Urology textbook.  A faculty will supervise resident and fellow presentations and engage the other residents to participate in a discussion on the topics that will be selected by the Academic Coordinator and approved by the Residency Program Committee. 

Training Sites

There are two main teaching sites where residents will complete the majority of their rotations which are: Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (TBRHSC), located in Thunder Bay; and Health Sciences North (HSN), located in Sudbury. The following rotations are provided at the University of Toronto: transplant, pediatric urology, and fertility

Additional Information

To learn more about Northern Ontario, please visit the "Wider Campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine University " webpage.

Summary of changes

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