One-on-One with Bruce Wright

When he’s not cheering on the Calgary Flames or spending time with his family, Dr. Bruce Wright is leading the distributed undergraduate and postgraduate medical programs across Vancouver Island as the UBC Faculty of Medicine’s Regional Associate Dean for Vancouver Island.

Working closely with partners like the University of Victoria and Island Health, Dr. Wright is not only helping to support the health care needs of the people on Vancouver Island but is expanding learning and research opportunities for students and trainees that will transform health for everyone.

Who inspires you and why?

Terry Fox because he personifies persistence, strength and courage for a higher cause. I’m also inspired by Steve Nash because he won Most Valuable Player as a Canadian in a quintessentially American game. There’s a humility to Nash as well because while he’s wasn’t the tallest or most athletic player, his ability to pass, see the court and make his teammates better was like magic.

What makes UBC different?

UBC has created a distributed medical education platform that not only works — it works very well. It’s a model that’s successfully brought universities together to achieve an important goal, which is to improve healthcare for everyone. It’s benefitting, in a real and tangible way, people across British Columbia and Canada, and I’m proud of that.

How do you like to recharge?

A bout of exercise after a glorious Calgary Flames win over the Vancouver Canucks.

Best piece of advice:

Don’t sweat the small stuff.

First job:

In grades 10 and 11, I was a gofer at Edmonton Motors’ new car showroom. I cleaned and delivered cars and did other odd jobs. I saved my money and bought a nice stereo and the Cat Stevens’ record Tea for the Tillerman, which I thought was fantastic.

Favourite spot in BC?

Salt Spring Island. My family and I vacationed there for 14 years in a row, often listening to the latest Harry Potter audiobooks on the way.

Secret talent:

I’ve been told I have perfect pitch and can hear a song and reproduce it well.

As the Regional Associate Dean for Vancouver Island, what are some of your goals and aspirations in your current role?

To provide and improve upon the excellent learning experiences we offer our students.

Moreover, I want to grow the simulation presence on the Island both in educational opportunities and research capacity. I would also like to build a world-leading clinical proteomics centre and continue to grow the cognitive health initiative, which focuses on early diagnosis of dementia.

Published: March 2019