This past weekend’s conference in Seattle was incredible. It was fun, inspiring, engaging, and really impressive.
It was my first national conference as my class’s rep for the American Association of Medical Colleges, and now I can’t wait to go each year. Over 200 representatives from colleges all over the country met to discuss the leading issues in medical education and share ideas about each school’s best practices. We had daily meetings as regions (SLU is part of the central region) and lots of breakout sessions and large group meetings all together. I would say the main topics focused on right now are:
- Cost and transparency in applying to residency
- Transition to clinical years and fair evaluation
- Wellness (SLU always leads the way in this area and we present posters on it at most of the conferences!)
- Cultural competency
I saw some familiar faces from the smaller conference in June but also met a ton of new people. I got to finally put some faces to names on the Advancing Holistic Review committee that I am the student liaison to. Everyone has unique backgrounds that allow them to bring different ideas and perspective to the table. The energy and passion about medicine and medical education is contagious.
In addition to the student meetings, I was also able to participate in some of the general conference happenings with deans and administration from all over the country. Doris Kearns Goodwin gave a presentation on leadership skills learned from past presidents that was both hilarious and educational. The exhibition hall had some of the coolest new medical technology I’ve ever seen. It’s unfortunate that I had to come home on Sunday, because the conference is still going on and Atul Guwande spoke today!
Aside from the conference meetings, I got to explore Seattle a little bit! The flight in was gorgeous over the mountains, and I was really surprised at how hilly the city was! I got to eat at Pike Place Market, grab coffee and a mug from the original Starbucks, see the Space Needle, and hang out at some cool bars mostly in the downtown and Capitol Hill area. Somehow it only really rained once…
As usual after conferences, I’m totally jazzed up right now about medical education and the positive changes we can make. I’m so excited to meet with our deans staff more regularly and see what we can get accomplished here at SLU and across the country. But for now, back to the books! I have an OSCE tomorrow and a GI exam on Friday.
Hope you had a great weekend!