What is Communicate2Integrate?
Training specific to licensure requirements for International Medical Doctors seeking successful integration into the North American healthcare system
Training to develop an understanding of the Patient-Centred Care Model
Training to develop effective communication, teamwork, and conflict resolution skills to work successfully within the North American workplace
Individual support to prepare foreign trained individuals for the workplace such as resumes and interview preparation
Customized workplace training within the workplace (i.e. job shadowing and customized training as per observations and organizational objectives; tutoring sessions at the worksite)
||Its reputation to deliver innovative, quality, outcomes-driven educational programming in either an online or classroom context|
||Its knowledge of the training needs of internationally trained professionals and experience working with diverse workplace cultures and people|
||Its relationships with a large number of educational institutions, Faculties of Medicine, and medical organizations — both provincial and national|
||Its responsiveness to change and dedication to successful competency-based outcomes|
Meet the Communicate2Integrate Team
Founder & Creator
Deidre Lake’s career started with teaching. From there, she specialized in the assessment of language and performance-based assessment tools. She is a nationally certified assessor on several language assessment tools and trained others. She’s managed various language-training programs for both non-profit organizations and large institutions. She’s been a member of various provincial and national advisory committees related to language assessment, immigration, Essential Skills, and Canadian Language Benchmarks.
From management, she moved into the areas of curriculum design and research. She designed the well-known performance-based, training program, known as MCAP Classroom and later developed MCAP Online. She’s also led several research studies related to language assessment and a longitudinal study on International Medical Doctors. Deidre Lake has a proven track record in the development of innovative, high quality, outcome driven, online and face-to-face training programs. The programs she has developed have been proven statistically, recognized nationally, and have been a model for other educational organizations. She is enthusiastic and driven to continue to lead and to deliver quality programs and services through Communicate2Integrate. Currently, she is most passionate about developing online training initiatives and the evolution of technology in Education and Healthcare.
Dr. Mohamud Verjee
Mohamud A. Verjee, BSc(Hons), MBChB, MBA, DRCOG, CCFP, FCFP
Dr. Mohamud A. Verjee is an Associate Professor of Family Medicine in Clinical Medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine - Qatar (WCM-Q). He is the Director of the Primary Care (Family Medicine) Clerkship, and is involved in academic research as well as being an active practicing family physician in Qatar. On arrival at WCM-Q, he took up additional duties as a Course Director, leading the MPS 11 component of the curriculum. He also took charge as Director of the Clinical Skills Center, relinquishing both responsibilities after six years of service to concentrate more closely on family medicine. As the inaugural Director of Primary Care, Dr. Verjee has overseen the development of the family medicine curriculum between New York and Qatar, customizing the course content and student experience in Qatar’s rapidly developing primary healthcare system. WCM-Q has seen continued success in family medicine resident placements in the US since its first graduating class in 2008.
Dr. Verjee received his BSc (Honors) in Biochemistry from the University of Dundee, Scotland, where he later obtained his MBChB medical degree. After internship, he completed a Diploma in Obstetrics & Gynecology and obtained the DRCOG from the Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists in London, England. Establishing a new community family practice in Oxfordshire, England, he started teaching medical students from Oxford University, England, in 1990. Moving to Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada in 1994, he practiced rural family medicine and emergency medicine for two years before settling in Alberta, Canada. He joined the University of Calgary as clinical faculty and achieved board certification in family medicine, becoming a Certificant (CCFP) of the College of Family Physicians of Canada. In 2014, he was bestowed with Fellowship of the College (FCFP). In the spirit of lifelong learning, he completed his MBA (Leadership & Sustainability) in 2015. He has also held the position of one of the Chief Examiners in Alberta for the Medical Council of Canada. At the University of Calgary and at his teaching practice, he taught an expanded cohort of medical students, family medicine residents, and nurse practitioners. He was closely involved with training, mentorship and reintegrating foreign medical graduates into the Canadian medical system under the Alberta International Medical Graduate (AIMG) program at the University of Calgary. He was appointed there as the Director, Family Medicine Clerkship, in 2003 and attained the rank of Clinical Associate Professor. His link with Calgary continues as an Adjunct Associate Professor of Family Medicine. He is an Alumnus of the Harvard Macy Institute in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, having attended all three major courses since 2009, and invited to return as faculty.
Awarded multiple Excellence in Teaching Awards at WCM-Q, and holder of several Gold Star teaching awards at Calgary, Dr. Verjee has also gained family medicine recognition for achievement and excellence from the College of Family Physicians of Canada. His clinical interests are diverse and include community obstetrics and gynecology, pediatric surveillance, vaccinations, cardiology, rheumatology, inflammatory bowel disorders, glaucoma, diabetes mellitus, thyroid disorders, procedures in family practice, Interprofessional Education, communication skills, Narrative Medicine, Humanism & Ethics, and literature in medicine. He is a strong advocate of patient centered care, and a 'medical home' for everyone.
Dr. Fernando Mejia
Fernando Mejia is a medical doctor with broad experience in health care and marketing. He graduated in 1996 from The Faculty of Medicine at Javerian Pontifical University, in Colombia and practiced for nine years in different health care settings. Aside for his medical practice, Fernando worked as medical adviser and product manager in the pharmaceutical industry. He opted to pursue a specialist degree in marketing, which he obtained from Our Lady of The Rosary University, Colombia in 2003.
Fernando immigrated to Canada in 2005. After successfully completing the licensure process, he became a licentiate of the Medical Council of Canada in 2015.
His continued interest in developing his medical career allowed him to be accepted in the residency program of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at the University of Calgary, where he is currently doing his second year of medical specialty training.
Dr. Andrea Dann
Andrea Dann completed a B.Sc. in General Science with distinction. Prior to finishing her undergraduate degree, she spent time trekking around South America, worked to improve literacy and numeracy on the Blackfoot reserve, and ran the Federal Public Sector Youth Internship program in Edmonton, AB. After graduating with her B.Sc., she went on to pursue an M.Sc. in Toxicology while teaching undergraduate biology labs. After defending her thesis, she worked as a Toxicologist doing risk assessments in the oil and gas field. It wasn¹t long before she realized that ultimately her interests were in human health and made the decision to pursue a degree in medicine. Having an adventuresome spirit, Andrea had long since decided to emigrate to Australia and it was there that she decided to obtain her medical education.
While in medical school, Andrea developed and delivered a lecture series for junior medical students and was involved in various mentorship activities. She successfully completed her Canadian qualifying exams in 2016, scoring 398 on her MCCEE (95th percentile) and 86% on her NAC OSCE. Andrea graduated medical school with an academic medal and received the Ethics Prize. While studying for her Canadian qualifying exams, she was very disappointed in the exam preparation courses being offered by other companies. Andrea took Deidre¹s NAC OSCE course and was very impressed, so much so, that she wanted to collaborate with her. Andrea is passionate about teaching and helping other IMG¹s navigate the long road to licensure in Canada.
Dr. Polya Ninova
Dr. Polya Ninova is a pediatrician who started her medical career in Bulgaria after she obtained a Medical Degree from the University of Plovdiv, Bulgaria in 1994. Her initial post-graduation practice experience was as a General Practitioner-MD in a small rural center. Five years later, Polya made a choice to become a Family Physician. After completion of the required post-graduate training, she opened her own family clinic in Plovdiv, Bulgaria where she practiced family medicine for almost five years. In pursuit for further professional and personal development, Polya took a second job position in a pharmaceutical trade company where she had the opportunity to develop and practice her marketing, communication, and presentation skills.
Polya immigrated to Canada in 2005 to strive for more work opportunities and better life for her and her family. Within the first three years she successfully passed the Medical Council of Canada Exams and the Alberta International Medical Graduates Program OSCE and MMI. During this period, she had taken several job positions as a home support worker, medical office receptionist, nursing attending, and clinical assistant in a rural hospital. This had given her the opportunity to become familiar with the Canadian Healthcare System and develop her professional network.
At the same time, Polya has been an active member of the Alberta International Medical Graduates Association and she has participated in several provincial government initiatives where she advocated for the professional integration of foreign doctors into the Canadian Healthcare System.
In 2009, Dr. Ninova entered the General Pediatric Residency Program at the University of Calgary and she worked as a Resident Physician at the Alberta Children’s Hospital until 2015. Despite her success in the Royal College Pediatric Specialty Exams, upon completion of her residency training Dr. Ninova suffered an adversity so that she was not granted the privilege to practice as a pediatrician in Canada. To keep her professional skills and knowledge current, she returned to Bulgaria to obtain pediatric privileges, and practice as a hospital pediatrician at the University of Pleven Hospital in Bulgaria.
Polya currently resides in Calgary with her family. She is motivated to continue to do her best in reaching her career goals and to expand on her knowledge and skills. In pursuing her professional fulfillment, she joined Communicate2Integrate at the beginning of 2017 as a course instructor and consultant. Since then, she has been a great advisor and a valuable member of the C2I team.
Miroslav Miro Reljic is an expert career and leadership coach and a dynamic motivational speaker. Although Miro had faced many obstacles when he moved to Calgary as a civil war survivor and non-English speaking refugee in 1999, he had overcome them all by having a clear vision of his success. Today, he is an alumnus of the University of Calgary (BA, Economics, 2004) and the University of Cambridge (Diploma in Coaching, 2016). In February 2017, he became the first Canadian leadership coach to be selected to coach executive MBA students at the prestigious Cambridge Judge Business School (CJBS).
Miro is the founder and CEO of Reljic Coached (RC), the coaching company that helps newcomers and executives unlock their full potential while providing hands on transition and change solutions. Miro is dedicated to creating opportunities which has led him to work and consult as a senior business analyst and management of change expert for 13 years for top 5 Canadian oil and banking companies. He has more than 20 years of experience of transforming imposed change initiatives into success stories. When he is not coaching, Miro is giving back by facilitating numerous pro bono workshops at Immigrant Services Calgary (ISC), CCIS, YMCA, YWCA, SAIT and Bow Valley College. For his coaching and volunteering work he was recognized as the 2017 finalists of the Immigrants of Distinction Awards (IDA) and was shortlisted for the RBC Top 25 Canadian Immigrants Awards of 2016. Miro is the winner of the Royal Bank of Canada Top 25 Canadian Immigrants of 2017!
RN. BScN, MPH
Heather Kerr is an assistant professor and past program coordinator of the Bridge to Canadian Nursing program at Mount Royal University. She has been part time faculty in the Mount Royal University School of Nursing and Midwifery since 2004 and has taught a variety of courses in the Bridge to Canadian Nursing (BCN) program. In 2006 Heather became involved in the substantially equivalent competency (SEC) process as an assessor with the Internationally Educated Nurses Assessment Center in Alberta. She was a consultant in the Capacity Building of International Assessments project building capacity within western Canada and established SEC assessment processes and tools. Heather has participated in various research projects supporting the journey of IENs as they transition to Registered Nurses in Canada and has a deep understanding of the challenges they face along the way. Heather is dedicated to supporting internationally educated health professionals in their journey to becoming valued participants in the Canadian health care system.
Lionel F. Laroche
Ph. D., P. Eng.
Over the past 18 years, Lionel Laroche has provided cross-cultural training, coaching and consulting services to over 75,000 people in 18 countries. Lionel specializes in helping organizations and their leaders turn the initial challenges often associated with cultural diversity into a source of creativity, innovation and competitive advantage. He works with the leaders, managers and HR professionals of many Fortune 500 organizations, as well as many municipal, provincial and federal governments and academic institutions.
Lionel is a very dynamic, entertaining and educational speaker / facilitator who presented at over 250 conferences and venues, organized by a wide range of business, government, academic, professional and non-profit organizations. He teaches courses regularly in several business schools, including the Rotman School of Business. the Alberta School of Business and the Faculty of Management of the University of Lethbridge.
He is the author of over 100 publications examining the impact of cultural differences on organizations in general and HR topics in particular. His publications have appeared in over 30 trade magazines published in eight countries. He has written three books.
Throughout his training, coaching and consulting practice, Lionel makes use of his 25 years of international experience, working with people from over 60 countries. He has worked in eight different countries for several multinational companies, including Xerox, Procter & Gamble, British Petroleum, and Jeumont-Schneider.
Born in France, Lionel obtained his “Diplôme d’Ingénieur Polytechnicien” from the Ecole Polytechnique de Paris, France and his Ph. D. in Chemical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California, USA.
Cindy K. Cheung
Cindy Cheung is a freelance technical writer and graphics communicator, specializing in document design and layout, typesetting, and proofreading and editing. She holds a certificate in Technical Writing from Mount Royal University and a certificate in Graphic Design from SAIT Polytechnic, both completed in 2016. Prior to this, she completed several design and art-related courses through the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, Online Division from 2008 to 2009.
Before starting her freelance career, she spent over a decade in the corporate world in a variety of industries ranging from Oil & Gas, nonprofit, and financial services, and held several progressively responsible positions in administration and Human Resources. Her most recent position was as a Compensation Analyst for a local credit union, where she had the opportunity to work on several high-level and confidential organizational structure and total compensation projects alongside the senior management team, successfully integrating innovative programs and policies as a result of a merger between two credit unions in 2016. She can now transfer this experience to collaborate with a wide range of clients and organizations.