ACC Southeast Women in Cardiology’s 4th Annual Conference


As medical residents and aspiring cardiologists, we attended the 4th Southeast Women in Cardiology Conference, a fantastic event for career guidance, mentorship, and networking with accomplished cardiologists at both professional and personal levels. We shared our experiences with women at various stages in cardiology, vascular surgery, cardiothoracic surgery, pediatric cardiology, cardio-oncology, obstetrics, and CV Team members.

We felt welcome from everyone that we met throughout the three-day conference. Former ACC WIC chair, Toniya Singh, MBBS, FACC, encouraged us with her talk on 'Changing the Culture of Cardiology'. Current ACC WIC chair, Gina Lundberg, MD, FACC, offered insights on WIC’s vision and mission. Past ACC President Minnow Walsh, MD, MACC, spoke on cardio-obstetrics, women's health issues, and reproductive rights. Alison Bailey, MD, FACC offered a leadership skills talk, which was also very useful. It was an honor to meet such successful people in their respective careers, which gave us vital guidance, enhanced our hopes, and empowered us to keep working towards our goals.

Various panel discussions and sessions held during the conference were very insightful. We learned about the impact of the new legislation pertaining to women’s reproductive rights from a cardiologist’s perspective. At the end of the conference, it was apparent that WIC exists as a conduit for professional support with personal growth for women at different stages in their careers. WIC offers a platform for women cardiologists to network, promote new ideas, offer support and resources to build leadership skills, and strive towards gender equity in the field.

A quote from one of the sessions on the last day of the conference, “changing the culture of cardiology” is something we carried home, trying to absorb the magnitude of words fully.

“What you permit, you promote

What you allow you encourage

What you condemn, you own.”

By the end of the meeting, it was clear that we would have missed a lot if we were to miss this conference. To experience such a robust networking system that will enhance career opportunities provided a strong sense of empowerment to every aspiring cardiologist like us. The resort was surrounded by beautiful attractions like the Butterfly Center and lake views, and the spectacular Pumpkin Festival added to the conference’s enriching experience.

We would like to thank Wynne Crawford, MD, FACC, who invited and encouraged our participation. Attending this conference enhanced our understanding of what it means to be a woman in cardiology and helped open more doors and career opportunities that we were looking for. We look forward to attending more of these sessions and contributing as much as possible to ACC WIC.

This article was authored by Varshitha Kondapaneni, MD, and Rhoshini Rajasekaran, MD, Internal Medicine Residents at the University of Alabama.

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