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Vanderbilt-Meharry Annual Pharmacology Retreat


Each Fall, the department hosts a retreat giving students & postdoctoral fellows the opportunity to present their future research plans in a 10-minute presentation.  The retreat is an important component of the Pharmacology Department and the Ph.D. program.  It has been a joint Vanderbilt-Meharry venture for almost 20 years and is a successful continuation of our efforts to foster the alliance that has developed over the years between the two institutions.

Since 2006 our graduate students have organized practically every aspect of the retreat such as identifying and inviting the keynote speaker (usually an alum of our pharmacology program), organizing competitions for “Best Talk” awards, and developing thematic programs.tree.jpg

First-year student presentations are developed to explain a research problem, its importance, and what has been learned to date.  The students are reminded that the majority of the presentation is for explaining what they want to accomplish or learn in the coming year and what strategies they will employ.  This emphasis on the future tense encourages substantial input, discussion, and critical consideration of the student’s project.  Furthermore, by learning the methodologies being established in different laboratories, students can readily learn from one another.  Often collaborations emerge at the retreat and this scientific exchange has fostered enhanced productivity of students and mentors alike.

2019 Pharmacology Retreat

Wednesday, October 30, 2019


Nelson Andrews Leadership Lodge
3088 Smith Springs Road
Nashville, TN 37013


Take I-40E (toward Knoxville) to Exit 219 (Stewarts Ferry Pike)
Turn RIGHT onto Stewarts Ferry Pike (which becomes Bell Road) for approx. 4-1/2 miles
Turn LEFT onto Smith Springs Road
Continue approx. 1-1/4 miles to YMCA/Camp Widjiwagan entrance on the LEFT
Please follow signs to EVENT PARKING
Walk to the event location (max. 5 minute walk)



8:30 am Registration/Breakfast
9:00 am Welcome by Ege Kavalali, Acting Chair of Pharmacology
9:15 am Science Session #1
10:00 am Poster Session #1
10:45 am Science Session #2
11:30 am Invited Postdoc Talk (Max Joffe, Ph.D.)
12:00 pm Group Photo & Lunch Pick Up
12:25 pm Keynote Address (Nora Sanchez, Ph.D.)
1:15 pm Poster Session #2
2:00 pm Invited Grad Student Talk (James Maksymetz, Conn Lab)
2:30 pm Invited Faculty Talk (Cody Siciliano, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Pharmacology)
3:15 pm Presentations and Awards
3:30 pm Outdoor Activities:  Archery, Canoes/Kayaks (weather permitting), Big Buzz Tower
5:00 pm Social Time/Annual Corn Hole Tournament
7:00 pm Event Ends