David Jenkins OC, MD, FRSC, FRCP, FRCPC, PhD, DSc

David Jenkins

Excellence in Linking Undergraduate Teaching to Research in Life Sciences
Undergraduate Teaching Awards in Life Sciences


David Jenkins has taught in the department of nutritional sciences in the faculty of medicine at the U of T for over 40 years since coming from Oxford in 1980. He has taught undergraduate students and graduates clinical nutrition, he has provided pre clinician and clinical medical students with formal and informal nutrition teaching together with medical residents especially, on electives. His emphasis has been to stimulate interest by exploring how knowledge that we use clinically is acquired.

In this respect he has been involved I research courses, undergraduate and graduate student supervision and has also run one of the largest summer student programs at St Michael’s Hospital. His philosophy has been that he believes students learn best from discussion, knowledge acquisition and successful project write-up than from lecture courses and formal examinations.

He considers himself blessed to have had great students and tremendously supportive and likeminded colleagues.

From the Nomination

Prof. Jenkins teaching philosophy is best captured in his paper, “Does conventional early life academic excellence predict later life scientific discovery? An assessment of the lives of great medical innovators” (Jenkins DJA et al. QJM. 2021 Jun; 114(6): 381–389). His analysis of the 100 great medical innovators demonstrated the importance of creating a flexible “Socratic” environment for innovation which allows students to follow their interests. - Prof John Sievenpiper

About the Award

This award recognizes sustained excellence, mentorship and innovative methods that link undergraduate teaching to experiential research opportunities such as research project courses, summer student research projects or equivalent programs.