Report on the 2nd Y-ECCO Mentorship Forum

Gabriele Dragoni, Y-ECCO Member

Gabriele Dragoni

Dear Y-ECCO Friends,

The Y-ECCO Mentorship Forum is an educational event designed to foster networking and prepare the career of young gastroenterologists with a particular interest in Inflammatory Bowel Disease. In June 2023, the second edition of the Forum took place in beautiful Vienna, and it certainly did not disappoint.

The programme kicked off on the Friday night at the bowling alley, where both Y-ECCO participants and members of the ECCO Faculty engaged in a lively match. The friendly environment continued with an informal dinner nearby, bringing the first evening to a pleasant close.

On Saturday, our current ECCO President, Britta Siegmund, opened the programme with an inspiring lecture on how to become a key opinion leader (KOL) in IBD, introducing also the more fascinating figure of innovation and knowledge leader, or IKL. Speed meetings in round tables followed, where all participants had the possibility to rotate every 30 minutes to dissect with the faculty members some key themes that might boost different steps in their career: tips and tricks for funding research (Britta Siegmund), why and how to move between countries (Krisztina Gecse), what every principal investigator needs to know (Maria Chaparro), what makes a good mentor and how to find one (Séverine Vermeire) and how to review a paper (Shaji Sebastian). The programme then moved on to two additional talks that addressed delicate topics for the younger generations, namely how to balance career and children (Charlotte Hedin) and how to efficiently use social media for IBD education (Shaji Sebastian).

After a lunch symposium where the use of S1P-receptor modulators was discussed by Krisztina Gecse and Séverine Vermeire, the last talk of the day (Séverine Vermeire) tried to explain what research is and how this can be locally funded by keen scientists. Finally, the afternoon brought new engagement and interaction among participants, who had to design new study proposals aiming to fill research gaps in IBD care. Small groups of fellows were given a research topic to be answered through a trial design, to be further discussed and defended in front of all our ECCO Faculty in a Dragon’s Den format.

We want to thank the very active Y-ECCO crew of participants and the outstanding ECCO Faculty for their mutual engagement. The Forum will now have a short break as it is supposed to take place every other year. Therefore, we look forward to organising the next event and to hosting another motivated group of Y-ECCO Members with the updated format in spring 2025!

The Y-ECCO Committee

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Posted in ECCO News, Committee News, Volume 18, Issue 3, Y-ECCO