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Feedback from the West Midlands HCS Trainee Network 2019 event

Monday, 13 May 2019

The West Midlands Healthcare Scientist Trainee Network hosted their Spring Networking Event 21st March 2019. The day consisted of inspiring and educating talks from keynote speakers, Professional Practice Workshops and Elective/Project talks from STPs.

Contribute to education and learning of colleagues / reflective practice

The day started with Sarah Clinton, who is training manager at the West Midlands Regional Genetics Laboratory. Sarah shared her experience of Healthcare Science Education and shared learning techniques that trainees can use to complement their training.

Keynote speaker Professor Berne Ferry

Next up was an inspiring talk by Head of the National School Professor Berne Ferry. Berne spoke about the future of healthcare science and the positive impact the school has for healthcare scientists. Berne spoke about her own journey to becoming a clinical scientist and many trainees found this particularly motivating:

“I felt very motivated to pursue a career in the NHS. She is a great role model”

Keynote speaker Professor Jackson Kirkman-Brown MBE

Our second keynote speaker was Professor Jackson Kirkman-Brown who is the Science Lead & the Pre-implantation Genetic Diagnosis Co-ordinator at Birmingham Fertility Centre. His talk focused on how healthcare scientists can have a great impact in healthcare and he gave advice on how trainees can become leaders in their field. Jackson spoke about his impact in reproductive medicine and encouraged clinical scientists to push for innovation in patient care. His talk was welcomed by trainees across many STP specialisms:

“Amazing talk very thought provoking and inspiring”

“Interesting and motivational; it also showed an area of healthcare science that I knew very little about”.

Professional practice workshop negotiation skills

After lunch trainees practised their negotiation skills in a workshop led by Genomics STP Ciara Batterton. The interactive session highlighted different negotiation styles and techniques and trainees learned how to apply them in a clinical setting. The session developed key skills and provided evidence for trainees’ Professional Practice competencies.

STP trainee elective talks

To finish the day, there was the opportunity for trainees to share their experiences on their elective or MSc Research Project. Histocompatibility and Immunogenetics Clinical Scientist Emily Halford presented on her 2018 Elective to John Hopkins University H&I Laboratory in Baltimore and the United Network for Organ Sharing in Virginia. Bioinformatics (Physical Sciences) STP Andrew Myers then spoke about his elective in Osaka Japan. Finally we had STP Immunology Nicholas McCarthy present on his MSc Research Project on Autoimmune disease. Talks from STPs are always greatly encouraged, as they not only assist with project and competency requirements, but also help trainees develop their communication skills.

Thanks from the West Midlands Healthcare Science Trainee Network

Events such as these are extremely beneficial for developing new skills and networking with fellow trainees and so the board would like to say a big thank you to all the speakers and everyone that helped organise such a brilliant day. We strongly encourage trainees to get involved with the next event!

We would also like to say a particular thanks to the NSHCS for all the event bookings, organisation and support.

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Twitter: @WestMidsHCSTN