The Dr. Ronald A. Ferguson Award

I wanted to be a physician since I was a child. Our wonderful family doctor made house calls to attend to my various maladies of measles, mumps and chicken pox for which no immunizations were available in the 1940's. Contrary to my desire to study medicine, I enrolled in engineering at Queen's in 1957 at my father's insistence. Fortunately after my first year, Queen's administration worked with me to transfer into Arts & Sciences where I majored in chemistry while completing the prerequisites to enter medicine, graduating with a B.Sc. in 1961. I had been a diligent saver as a high school student and, with assistance from my parents, completed eight years at Queen's, graduating from medicine in 1966. I was certified in Family Medicine in Canada in 1972 and in the U.S. in 1975.

After a very satisfying career as a medical educator, practicing physician, and administrator, I retired in 2006. Within six months I returned to patient care (my first love) on a part-time basis, in the Northwest Territories of Canada. Along with other health care professionals, I provided medical services to the Dene people in the Sahtu region of the Northwest Territories, where access to care is challenging and the practice of medicine very rewarding.

It was while practicing in the Northwest Territories that I decided to "give back to Queen's in some fashion". Subsequently I collaborated with Queen's to create the "Dr. Ronald A. Ferguson Award" to provide assistance to a medical student in need, who also volunteers in community service projects at Queen's or in the Kingston area.

I hope this Award will stimulate the prospective candidate to enter into a lifetime of community service while practicing his/her medical profession.