Insights From Scientific Annual Meetings

Cardiology Magazine Image

For many years, scientific annual meetings have provided attendees with the opportunity to experience first-hand the hottest late-breaking science, focused research presentations and educational programming, as well as the ability to network with colleagues from around the world. According to an article published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, the unique aspects of interactions and experiences at annual live meetings may be an essential part of lifelong learning.

I recently had the opportunity to attend the 2018 European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress, held in the vibrant city of Munich, Germany. More than 30,000 delegates had five days to learn about new studies and trials, network with peers, and interact with key figures and industry members. One piece of advice for trainees to is consider applying for an ESC Congress educational grant. According to the ESC, priority is typically given to first-name abstract presenters, those who have not been offered a grant in the past, and applicants coming from middle- and low-income countries. The educational grant includes travel and accommodations stipend for the duration of the meeting. Another ESC initiative that proved to be extremely valuable and welcomed was the mentoring scheme, an opportunity that was widely popular among Fellows in Training (FITs) and early career physicians. The session took place in an informal setting and mostly consisted of physicians, scientists, academics and educators. Having a one-to-one conversation proved to be successful and allowed for meaningful interaction.

The ACC also offers mentoring resources for FITs at The ACC FIT Section constantly provides information regarding training, mentoring and issues that are related to FIT needs. There monthly online newsletter also includes interesting educational topics and interviews from recognized cardiologists that provide a meaningful mentoring activity. Furthermore, every year at ACC's Annual Scientific Sessions, the Young Investigator Awards competition takes place. This competition allows young investigators to be recognized and awarded prizes in order to carry on with their research and advance the field of cardiology.

Attending an annual scientific meeting should be on the calendar of every cardiology enthusiast as these meetings provide a fantastic opportunity to learn and network with other cardiovascular professionals from around the world. Actions from both ACC's Annual Scientific Sessions and ESC Congress – such as grants and mentoring – are welcomed from the younger generation of cardiologists who wish to gain more experience and attend these meetings.

This article was authored by Konstantinos Stathogiannis, MD, PhD, Fellow in Training (FIT) at Hippokration General Hospital in Athens, Greece, and cardiac imaging scholar at the University of Chicago in Chicago, IL.