Monica Chuang


Anesthesiology resident at the University of Toronto

Monica Chuang
Anesthesiology resident at the University of Toronto

B.Sc. (Hons in Chemistry), Dalhousie University, 2002
MD, University of Toronto, 2006

Career Path
After graduating medical school, I decided to stay at the University of Toronto to pursue my residency in anesthesiology.  Medical school provided me with a foundation of general medical knowledge, but residency is where I am learning to be an independent practitioner.  I would say that the amount of patient responsibility as well as independent clinical decision-making has increased as I have become more senior in my training.

Chemistry in Action
My favorite aspects of chemistry are the problem-solving, and hands-on learning in the lab setting. I’ve always been someone who learns by seeing and then doing. The fondest memories I have of my time at Dalhousie involve afternoons spent in the labs with classmates, trying to figure out how to make certain reactions work. There was always such a great sense of satisfaction and accomplishment when you were able to successfully complete a lab on your own.

Last Words
I would highly recommend a degree in chemistry to anyone who is interested in furthering their skills in problem solving and analytical thinking.  To this day, these are skills that I use on a daily basis. It never ceases to amaze me how chemistry creeps into almost every aspect of my work in anesthesia.  Whether it is the pharmacology of a drug I am using in the operating room, or a patient’s electrolyte abnormalities, a chemistry background has helped greatly in my career as a physician.