What does 75 years of CSMLS mean to you? What has made you feel proud of being a CSMLS member? What event(s) stand out to you? We encourage you to tell us your stories; they will be posted below. Required fields are marked *
I wrote my CSMLS exams (6 of them) in 1973. I graduated from the MLS-University of Alberta Program with a BSc the following year in 1974. I have been a CSMLS member for 38 years and during this time have participated in CSMLS national conventions about 15 times. In the last five years I have presented posters, participated in panel discussions and offered live sessions. This gave me an new appreciatation of CSMLS. I saw first hand the hard work and dedication of its members, especially those who serve as volunteers. I have seen the sessions go from being very formal and technical and mainly offered by physicans to more ‘user friendly’, less technical, more personal growth sessions and best of all offered by my peers. I have watched the birth of CAMLE (Canadian Association of Medical Laboratory Educators) at NAIT (1980)and watched the connection between CAMLE and CSMLS evolve.
I am proud to be a member of CSMLS and every convention that I attend makes me glad to be part of such a professional organization.
After training at Mohawk College (previously the Hamilton and District School of Medical Technology) I started my clinical year at K-W Hospital in Kitchener in 1976. At the hospital was Roy Uttley (CSMLS President, 1960) and Kenneth Howell. While there were other gentlemen in the laboratory, these two were the most senior and only referred to as Mr. Uttley and Mr. Howell. Mr Uttley was winding down his career then, while Mr. Howell was a Scottish wizard who kept the chemistry instruments and equipment running. I remember Mr. Howell counselling me that should I have trouble running Calciums and Magnesiums on the atomic absorption equipment, I might want to consider opening the instrument’s drawer and slamming it “really hard”. It worked like a charm.
I am not sure why things were so formal in the laboratory, especially since Misters Uttley and Howell were very friendly and congenial. It was a time of contrasts. Of course in those days we pipetted by mouth, had food on display in the laboratory and [some] regularly smoked in the laboratory on the weekends.
“When I was a student at Michener, I would listen to my teachers tell us about their involvement with the CSMLS. One of them even served as a board member. They seemed energized and passionate about their profession, and I wanted to be too. So, when I was reading the journal a year after I graduated, I applied for a spot on the exam panel. And so began a long association with CSMLS – volunteer, facilitator, staff and now Executive Director. All because I wanted to be just like them …”
Member Since 1995
40 Years of Memories
My keenest memories as a laboratory technologist started in 1969 when I got to leave home in Montreal to move to Toronto and attend The Toronto Institute for Medical Technology or TIMT, now the Michener Institute, completing those studies in October of 1971 when I obtained my CSLT certification.
1) Volunteering for my profession: I truly felt I became a full CSMLS member when I started to volunteer. I have always enjoyed reading so I naively responded in 1987 to an appeal for new members to serve on the CSMLS Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP). What a learning opportunity! This experience ultimately convinced me to complete my ART in Haematology in 1991. My volunteering for the profession did not stop after I moved to New Brunswick in 1992 as I have continued, to date, with SAP and served 7 years on the NBSMLT BOD followed by over 8 years on the CSMLS BOD as the Bilingual Director and Presidential Officer. The experience of working on virtually all of the NBSMLT and CSMLS committees was so beneficial and the opportunity to meet and work with others from across the country has given me life-long friendships.
2) National Congresses: Why attend? Well after the first one you will find it is like eating peanuts – you cannot stop! Just by attending and experiencing the learning opportunities would be enough but if you volunteer to help or offer to be a presenter you will definitely be hooked. My first experience was the CSLT Congress held in Montreal in 1991. I got dropped in feet first as I was asked to serve on the scientific committee even though I had had no previous experience of what it all meant. The professionals on this committee were so supportive and I quickly learned what I would be responsible for. My very first speaker introduction was in French and I have never looked back. Ultimately, I became confident enough, with the support of the very best congress team, to chair a national congress here in Moncton. What a high note!
To be a part of LABCON 2012 will no doubt be another. As has the profession grown so have the congresses, so come and be a part of the next evolution of memorable CSMLS congresses.
3) Professional Development: I feel like my grandmother, who lived from the horse and buggy age to watching men on the moon, when I say that most of all it has been to watch our profession grow to the force it is now. The advancements in the technology available to us and the level of knowledge and skills we have had to learn are monumental. Our graduates now have so much more expected of them than in 1971 but from the ones I have met they are more than prepared to carry us on for another 75 years. Even now, as I work towards my full retirement as an active MLT, I will continue to watch with pride and will say: “Those laboratory professionals are the best and I am proud to say I am one of them.”
“I have been a member of CSMLS (formerly CSLT) since 1965. During my time as a Medical Laboratory Technologist in a hospital setting, I was not really aware of what went on at the office aside becoming Certified, having to come for my oral ART exam and paying my membership annually.
I can’t remember there being any mention of volunteering for the various committees etc,. in any information which was sent out to the membership.
It wasn’t until I was offered a position at the CSMLS office that I became aware of what went on here and was totally amazed by all the activity, the number of meetings and volunteers. I am pleased with the way the CSMLS has evolved in recent years. It has become more member friendly with the amount of information which has been provided and the courses which are available.
It has been great to have the exposure to the functioning of CSMLS at this level.”
“My first Congress experience was 1999, in Toronto. I remember the scientific program as being intriguing, informative and challenging for a new grad. I watched with wonder as the CSMLS promoted the 2000 World Congress in Vancouver. An event members still talk about. And I remember seeing educators, techs and managers hugging long lost friends and forming new friendships. Something I still love seeing every year when we reunite in another city…”
The national certifying body for MLT and MLA, and the national professional society for Canada's medical laboratory professionals.
CSMLS's annual celebration honoring the past, present and future accomplishments, recognitions and developments that have taken place within the medical laboratory industry.
Celebrate CSMLS's 75th anniversary. Find out all that this site has to offer.
Copyright © 2013 Canadian Society for Medical Laboratory Science (CSMLS). All Rights Reserved.