The Endocrine Society

The Endocrine Society

April 01, 2017
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Women in Endocrinology honors young investigators, mentors at annual meeting

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ORLANDO, Fla. — The advocacy group Women in Endocrinology is once again holding its annual meeting and dinner at ENDO 2017, spotlighting member achievements in the field, trailblazing young investigators and mentors who have paved the way for women beginning their careers. This year, the organization is also holding a career development workshop and unique networking opportunities, all part of a multi-pronged approach to increase opportunities for women.

Women in Endocrinology president Karen Klahr Miller, MD, professor of medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, spoke with Endocrine Today about the mission of Women in Endocrinology and the importance of highlighting the achievements of women in the field.

Karen K. Miller
Karen Klahr Miller

What is the role of a group like Women in Endocrinology ?

Miller: The mission of Women in Endocrinology is to promote the careers of women in the field of endocrinology. We think about this broadly. We really want to support and promote women who are researchers, who are clinicians, who are educators, who are nurses, who are pharmacists, in any capacity related to endocrinology.

What are some of the biggest challenges women in the field face today, and how does Women in Endocrinology aim to address them?

Miller: I think that, although women are making up a greater proportion of clinicians, researchers and other roles, there is still a dearth of women in leadership positions in academia, in pharmaceutical companies, and many other forums. Women are also disproportionately represented in terms of awards. We think we still have work to do to promote careers of women in the field of endocrinology.

What are the highlights of this year’s meeting?

Miller: We had several items on the agenda. Our speaker, Anne Klibanski, MD, chief academic officer at Partners Healthcare and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, will address navigating an academic career. This is an outstanding talk that will leverage her own personal experience to advise women who are interested in climbing the academic ladder.

We will be presenting awards. Every year we present a mentor award for outstanding mentorship in the field. This year, the recipient is Ellen W. Seely, MD, director of clinical research, endocrinology, diabetes and hypertension division at Brigham and Woman’s Hospital. The recipients are nominated by their mentees, who write compelling letters about the impact that the proposed awardee has made on the careers and the lives of the women they mentor. A highlight every year is to hear from these mentees about the differences these women made in their lives. It’s a competitive award, and our awardees are all very talented, accomplished and inspirational.

In addition, we present awards to young researchers in clinical and basic science. These awards honor young women who are presenting extremely high-quality scientific abstracts at ENDO and honor the women for whom they are named.

We always make time for networking. It’s helpful for advancing women’s careers, and it’s an important aspect of our meeting and dinner. It’s also an opportunity to thank all our committee chairs and members for all the hard work they do during the year to advance the careers of women in endocrinology.

On Sunday we are once again sponsoring the career development workshop “Optimizing Your Mentor-Mentee Relationship for Career Success,” from 1:15 to 2:30 p.m. in room W208A.

How can those who are interested get involved?

Miller: I would welcome anyone to directly email me if they are interested in serving on a committee or have ideas for programs that can help us pursue for our mission at kkmiller@mgh.harvard.edu. Or, those who are interested should feel free to send an email to our general email: women.in.endorcinology@gmail.com. We welcome the involvement of everyone who would like to donate their time, experience and ideas to the organization. Women in Endocrinology is also at booth #644 in the Expo Center at ENDO, where there is a networking area.

For more information about Women in Endocrinology, visit www.women-in-endo.org/membership. – by Regina Schaffer

Disclosures: Miller reports no relevant financial disclosures.