With the new school year and new, energetic MSTP leadership, the MSTP Seminar Committee is excited to incorporate some changes into MSTP Seminar. MSTP Seminar has always been about bringing the MSTP together once a week to discuss and learn about topics relevant for physician-scientist training. This year, MSTP Seminar includes a few new initiatives aimed to further enhance mentorship, training, and participation. The two biggest changes are the addition of Research-In-Progress Seminars and Associate College Advisors.
The Research-In-Progress Seminars (RIPS) will feature MSTP students that are G3s or above. In these small group presentations, students will present their own thesis-related research. Daniel Kashima, MSTP G4, presented one of the first research-in-progress talks. He says the new addition “gets younger trainees acquainted with more senior students and their research” and “provides the speaker with thoughtful questions and discussion from a general, yet scientifically competent audience.”
Alex Sundermann, MSTP G2, believes that “the changes implemented this year have enhanced the ability of current students to benefit from the experience of others.” We look forward to hearing from our G3s and G4s this year.
The Associate College Advisors (ACAs) are physician scientists in the residency or fellowship phase of training at Vanderbilt. The nine ACAs are training in a variety of clinical specialties and are engaged in research across a broad range of topics; the ACAs will serve as resources for MSTP students as near-peer mentors.
“I am confident that having college advisors closer to our stage of training will immensely enhance our experience within the MSTP and further our career development… For example, Dr. Vance Albaugh (a surgeon-scientist and new associated advisor for Stahlman-Thomas) has already offered to help me figure out how I can successfully combine a career in science and surgery,” said Blair Stocks, MSTP M3.
Each MSTP advising college now has at least two ACAs. MariaSanta Mangione, MSTP G3, stated, “The associate college advisors are already impacting MSTP seminar, particularly by enriching our discussions in small groups by sharing clinical knowledge during cases and asking great questions during research-in-progress seminars.” We are so excited to have the ACAs joining us for seminar this year! Stay tuned to meet the ACAs in upcoming editions of the newsletter.