The Department of Pediatrics is poised for 10 years of innovation and growth under the leadership of its new chair.
This annual report needs to provide a snapshot of the current department—its leaders and initiatives, facts and figures—to measure against in the subsequent years of this journey.
The challenge is that we’ll be taking a different approach from a traditional academic annual report. Taking a different approach does not guarantee buy-in from stakeholders.
An historical look at the evolution and growth of the department sets the stage. We asked the faculty and researchers a lot of questions. “Why did you come to McMaster?” “What does your work center around?” Their answers also prompted the questions that drove their work. “What can parents of babies born severely premature expect?” “Is there a way to relieve children from the traumatic experience of being in the hospital?” “What happens when a child with a chronic condition transitions into adult care?” The answers became the basis for the stories.
Some of the articles focused on pediatric specialties: diabetes, obesity, cancer, childhood disability, neuromuscular disorders and neonatology. Some of the articles focused on member achievements and successes. The faculty interviewed and profiled are all leaders in their field and rank highly in Google searches.
Photography was important in the storytelling mix. Graphics were created to help illustrate concepts such as research processes and knowledge translation. We proposed a playful approach to handling facts and figures for ‘by the numbers’—use monopoly money and children’s toys to show significant achievements in the department. The resulting pages are fun and draw the reader in.
This first Annual Report gives a sense of the Department’s roots, its current strengths, and future direction in a non-traditional way. It’s fitting, for an innovative department.
Michelle Edmonds, Bob Edmonds