March 10th, 2013

Learning to Network: Blogging from ACC.13

Several Cardiology Fellows who are attending ACC.13 in San Francisco this week are blogging for CardioExchange. The Fellows include Tariq AhmadMegan CoylewrightJeremiah DeptaKumar Dharmarajan Payal Kohli, and  Sandeep Mangalmurti. View the previous post here and the next one here.

I finally arrived at ACC 2013. This is my fifth ACC meeting and I am always astounded with the breadth and depth of the conference. As a FIT (fellow-in-training), the networking potential this meeting provides is under-recognized and, potentially, undervalued. Instead of sitting in sessions and learning about the amazing innovations going on in our field, I spent the afternoon networking. At prior ACC meetings, I had not made such a concerted effort to speak with the luminaries in our field and, unfortunately, this was a monumental mistake. Today, I received a plethora of career and research advice in one short afternoon.

The highlight of the afternoon for me was the Mix ‘n’ Mingle session for FITs at the ACC Bistro. The opportunity to meet with the leaders of cardiology was incredible. How many times as a FIT do you have a chance to have a one on one conversation with 36 different experts from the various fields in cardiology? I had a chance to discuss and get feedback on a research project from Morton Kern. Next, I had a sat down with John Spertus and discussed research as well as opportunities for FITs in outcomes research. Finally, I spent some time with Richard Becker and had an engaging discussion with other FITs about platelet biology and new approaches and innovations to studying thrombosis. It was amazing to hear the career advice that Deepak Bhatt, Martin Leon, and Jeff Popma discussed with FITs planning on a career in intervention. At one point, I looked around the Bistro and saw my fellow FITs embroiled in conversations with the celebrities of cardiology and was in awe. This is why you attend the ACC as a FIT! Where else are you going to have a chance to network with so many cardiology leaders? This afternoon made the trip to San Francisco well worth it and provided me invaluable insight that will certainly change the trajectory of my research and career.

For more of our ACC.13 coverage of late-breaking clinical trials, interviews with the authors of the most important research, and blogs from our fellows on the most interesting presentations at the meeting, check out our Coverage Headquarters.

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