Dr. Jessica McAlpine: My Journey to a Career in Ovarian Cancer Research

May 6, 2015

Thanks for the invitation to be part of this blog and to share research discoveries from the Ovarian Cancer Research Program (OVCARE).

I am a local girl: I was born in Vancouver (at Vancouver General Hospital) and both my parents and both sets of grandparents have lived in Vancouver for most of their lives. I did my undergraduate training here in B.C. but spent over a decade in the US for medical school, residency and Fellowship (with some fun travel and international work scattered in between).

I rotated at the BC Cancer Agency when I was a Fellow and was lucky enough to be offered a position at the University of British Columbia (UBC) and the Agency beginning in 2006. My husband, two daughters (ages six and nine) and I love being in Vancouver with family, friends and what feels like an intimate supportive community encompassing many generations.

I do not think there is any other position on the globe that would have afforded me the opportunities to grow as a surgeon, clinician and researcher as I have received here in Vancouver.

I have had amazing mentorship through OVCARE (Blake Gilks, David Huntsman, Dianne Miller) and UBC (Gavin Stuart and many more) and have bright colleagues that are frankly just nice to hang around with.

I am in awe of the bravery of our patients as they face surgery for known or unknown diagnoses, and incredibly grateful for their generosity as they consistently support our research by consenting to allow their tissue samples to be studied. In my next posts I look forward to sharing some of the discoveries that the tissue bank has enabled.