Manitoba midwifery students join McMaster


Midwifery students of the University of Manitoba (UM) are joining McMaster University’s midwifery program this September.

The 14 students who have completed the first year of the program at UM will join the 30 McMaster midwifery students in the second year of McMaster’s Bachelor of Health Science (Midwifery) program. However, the Manitoba students will not be moving to Hamilton, as they will receive most if not all of their training in their own province.

The agreement between the universities was announced by Manitoba’s Education and Training Minister Ian Wishart today.

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Eileen Hutton, assistant dean, midwifery education.

“This new partnership will ensure the midwifery students in Manitoba who have already invested significant time and effort towards their studies can complete their coursework uninterrupted,” said Wishart. “I commend our partners for their hard work in reaching this solution, which will help the Manitoba government meet the growing demand for qualified midwives in our province.”

The Manitoba program at the University of Manitoba and the University College of the North had been established in 2006, but is now being transferred to McMaster.

“We are delighted to be working with the University of Manitoba and the Manitoba government on this innovative educational program,” said Eileen Hutton, McMaster’s Assistant Dean, Midwifery and Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at McMaster University. “This collaboration will build on McMaster’s expertise in midwifery education and support the growth of midwifery in Manitoba.”

The Manitoba students will continue their studies at the UM campus as McMaster transfer students, taking classes and labs with qualified UM midwifery instructors, participating in distance learning led by McMaster faculty, and joining distance tutorials with their fellow McMaster classmates during their clinical rotations in Manitoba communities.

“We’re very pleased with our ‘homegrown’ solution, which will allow current midwifery students to continue to live, work and study in Winnipeg and, during clinical placements, service patients in remote and rural communities across Manitoba,” said Dr. Beverly O’Connell, dean of the College of Nursing at UM. “This bodes well for meeting the midwifery needs of women and families around the province.”

Midwifery is a regulated health profession in Manitoba, and midwives care for women and newborns in communities, homes, clinics, birth centres and hospitals. Manitoba midwives work throughout the province including northern and rural areas. McMaster’s midwifery program, which is part of the Ontario Midwifery Education Program with Ryerson University and Laurentian University, was the first program in Canada when it was established in 1993.

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