My first interaction with the Southern AFMR was during my fellowship when my mentor encouraged me to submit an abstract and share the results of the clinical research I was working on at the time. It got accepted for an oral presentation. I enjoyed going to the meeting, and felt that it was a great opportunity for me to present my findings to a group of esteemed scientists, but also interact and learn about the work of other like-minded researchers in neighboring schools. Unlike national meetings I had gone to, this one felt more personal and conducive to discussions and brainstorming. I came back from it energized and inspired.
Fast forward almost 20 years, and here I am presiding over the Southern Section Council of AFMR. In an environment where academic medicine is facing significant challenges, and researchers are threatened by limited funding, the mission of the AFMR has never been more important. We strive to promote research and foster mentorship of junior faculty and trainees to ensure the future of medical research. SAFMR representation in the Southern Regional Meeting (SRM) allows researchers from neighboring states and institutions to mingle with the hope of cultivating regional scientific collaborations. More importantly, and perhaps uniquely, SRM is a multidisciplinary meeting that allows the cross pollination of ideas and cross talk among academicians, who otherwise, may be living in parallel universes.
Education, research and clinical care have been passions of mine since the beginning of my training and my involvement and support for SAFMR is building on these passions. I hope that you will join me on this journey and carry forward the mission of our society.
In the coming year, I challenge you to encourage investigators in your professional circle to become members of AFMR, and to engage more Southeastern institutions to join our ranks.
Dana Rizk, MD
Chair, Southern Section Council
August 2: Abstract Submission Opens
August 31: AFMR National Award Application Available
October 12: Abstract Submission Deadline
November 15: Abstract Notifications Sent
January 7: Outstanding Investigator Award Application Deadline
February 15: Discounted Pre-registration Deadline
February 21-23: Southern Regional Meeting
February 13-15: Southern Regional Meeting
February 25-27: Southern Regional Meeting