Photo courtesy of Lied Lodge
MD-PhD Scholars Program Retreat (2020): Highlights
Due to COVID-19, our retreat committee worked exceptionally hard to convert our usual in-peron retreat to a virtual one over Zoom this year.
Workshops and Mentorship
This year's retreat featured a number of workshops and peer-mentoring opportunities:
- NIH F30 Grant Writing Workshops, led by peers
- Mentoring sessions on transitions (such as medical school to graduate school and graduate school to medical school)
- Each cohort had the opportunity to mentor the cohort a year behind them and to be mentored by the cohort a year ahead of them
- A panel of work-life balance, led by faculty and senior students
Scientific Lectures and Presentations
We had a nice variety of presentations and lectures from UNMC and visiting faculty:
- Virtual poster session, led by current student sin the Graduate Phase of training
- "How to excel in M3 year" by UNMC Pediatrics Clerkship Director Dr. Jason Burrows
- Keynote speaker, Dr. Will Parsons, MD, PhD, serves as the PSTP director at Baylor COM
Social(ly Distant) Activities
Although we couldn't gather in person, we still found creative ways to socialize as a program:
- We started off the retreat with Jackbox party games, which are fun group games that can be played over Zoom.
- For the afternoon, one option was a group mindfulness session, which focused on being present in the current moment. Mindfulness is a very popular technique used to relieve stress.
- The other option was a virtual murder mystery house, which was played in teams. Students had a lot of fun working together to solve puzzles and find clues to the game!
- Virtual game night and a virtual planetarium visit were optional evening activities to replace our usual in-person game night and star-gazing activities during the evening of our in-person retreat.
MD-PhD Scholars Program Retreat (2019): Highlights
- The MD/PhD retreat is a unique opportunity for the entire program to be together for the weekend.
- Friday afternoon, the students plan an outing of their choice. This year, we all went bowling and had a blast competing in the tournament.
- Many faculty and MD/PhD program leaders attend the retreat and are eager to get to know the students. There are many opportunities to form relationships with faculty as well as your fellow students.
- The retreat has multiple workshops that are held by more senior students; this is a great time to develop peer mentoring relationships.
- Student-led workshops this year included: Interpersonal Networking, Using Social Media Professionally, Preparing an NIH Grant, Preparing for M1 Year, and Preparing for Graduate School.
- Program director Dr. Justin Mott, MD, PhD put on a workshop this year, “Residency: What you should be doing now to prepare,” which was valuable experience for the next steps in our career path.
- There is a cocktail hour before dinner where graduate students have the opportunity to present a poster on their graduate research. This is a wonderful opportunity to learn about the research of fellow peers as well as to practice presentation skills.
- The MD/PhD Scholars retreat invites a distinguished guest speaker each year. Colin Weekes, MD, PhD and delivered a wonderful lecture over dinner.
Former Keynote Speakers
Donald W. (Will) Parsons, MD, PhD
Colin Weekes, MD, PhD
John Morrison, MD, PhD
Thomas Gross, MD, PhD
Monte S. Willis, MD, PhD
Kimberly A. Chapman, MD, PhD
Eric Benner, MD, PhD
Jennifer Larsen, MD
Christopher Kratochvil, MD
Kenneth Bayles, PhD
Rodney Miles, MD, PhD
Herbert O. (Dele) Davies, MD
Bradley Britigan, MD
Rodney S. Markin, MD, PhD