UBC Gift Supports Southern Medical Program Students

Dr. Douglas Pollock

A new endowment fund for Southern Medical Program (SMP) students has been established with the generous support of a retired local family physician. Dr. Douglas Pollock, who practiced medicine in Kelowna for 43 years, has provided a substantial gift to UBC to provide annual bursaries for medical students based at UBC Okanagan.

A graduate of Queen’s University, Pollock first arrived in Kelowna in 1965 to a small community of 22,000 people and less than 30 physicians. He worked as part of the Underhill Clinic for five years before helping form Group One Medical where he worked for the balance of his career.

Pollock dedicated his life to the practice of medicine. “I jumped out of bed every morning, excited to see my patients and make rounds at the hospital,” he says. “I loved solving complex medical problems and working with an amazing group of colleagues deeply devoted to their craft.”

Reflecting back on his years of practice, Pollock underscores the advancement of technology as the biggest game changer in the delivery of health care. He still enjoys finding time to absorb new medical knowledge and to follow his many other passions such as opera, politics and time with family.

The new bursary program will provide much-needed financial support for SMP students to offset tuition and other educational expenses. With matching funds from UBC, approximately $20,000 in annual bursaries will be made available.

“The debts incurred by medical students during their studies can be daunting,” says Pollock. “I wanted to find a way to support students in perpetuity and alleviate some of financial stressors as they pursue their medical careers.”