AVC’s Ian Dohoo honoured by University of Helsinki

Friday, June 26, 2015
Dr. Ian Dohoo

Dr. Ian Dohoo, professor emeritus of epidemiology at the Atlantic Veterinary College (AVC) at UPEI, was honoured recently with an honorary doctorate in veterinary medicine by the University of Helsinki in Finland.

Dohoo was one of ten people honoured by the University of Helsinki's Faculty of Veterinary Medicine during a three-day celebration that included, among other events, a sword-whetting ceremony, the degree conferment ceremony, a formal ball, and a salute to the rising sun at 4:01 a.m. Helsinki time. Five people from Finland, including Sauli Niinistö, president of the country, and five from other countries were awarded honorary degrees during the event. During the conferment ceremony, Dohoo was presented with the University of Helinski's insignia of academic rank-a doctoral top hat and a sword.

Dohoo received his honorary degree in recognition of his internationally renowned work in veterinary epidemiology-the study of diseases in populations of animals-and his long record of post-graduate teaching in Scandinavia. The presentation was even more meaningful for Dohoo because Dr. Antti Sukura, the current dean of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Helsinki, was a participant in his first Scandinavian graduate course.

'Dr. Dohoo is renowned internationally for his expertise in veterinary epidemiology,' says Dr. Greg Keefe, dean of AVC. 'I am honoured to count myself among his early graduate students at the Atlantic Veterinary College. This honour is a testament to his excellent record as a teacher, researcher, and collaborator.'

From 1990 to the present, Dohoo has been teaching graduate-level epidemiology courses in the Scandinavian region. Many of the courses were organized by a collaboration of universities in Sweden, Finland, Denmark, and Norway.

'Being involved in epidemiology in Scandinavia has been a highlight of my career,' says Dohoo. 'To be able to contribute to the region's competency in epidemiology and to have it recognized in this way is a thrill for me.'

Dohoo credits his mentor and friend Dr. Wayne Martin, of the University of Guelph, with getting him involved in teaching in Scandinavia, adding that Martin recently received an honorary degree from the University College Dublin in Ireland. 'It's very exciting that we are both being honoured at the same time by different universities.'

This honour is the most recent among many for Dohoo. In 2005, he was elected a Fellow of the prestigious Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. He received honorary degrees from the University of Sweden in 2008 and the University of Guelph in 2012. He has won numerous awards for teaching and research, including the 2012 Calvin W. Schwabe Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Association for Veterinary Epidemiology and Preventative Medicine. He was named professor emeritus at UPEI's 2012 convocation ceremony. With Dr. Henrik Stryhn of AVC and Martin, he authored the standard text used for epidemiology curricula in veterinary schools around the world.

Dohoo graduated with a degree in veterinary medicine from the Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, in 1976, and in 1982 with his PhD. He joined AVC in 1985, the year before the College accepted its first class of students, and retired in 2012.

Anna MacDonald
External Relations Officer
Atlantic Veterinary College
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