The 2018 Pathology Retreat

Retreat story

Grit.  Perseverance.  Passion.

Those were some of the takeaway words from the Pathology Retreat on April 21, gleaned from Keynote Speaker Todd Brady, MD PhD‘s talk, “The Case for Pathological Innovation.” Dr. Brady inspired the group with tales of his journey from the MD PhD program at Duke to CEO at a private biotech firm, opening minds to pathways of career trajectories that are often overlooked in the academic programs.  Other speakers filled the day with science topics from genetic and molecular discoveries to cautions in assumed diagnoses.  (See the entire program of speakers and topics)

A poster session followed the talks, and prizes were awarded to graduate student Pakawat Chongsathidkiet, MD and resident Catherine Luedke, MD.   The view of the Duke campus and surrounding spring-green trees from the top floor of University Tower, where the Retreat was held, added to the novelty of the event.

This was the second departmental retreat hosted by the Graduate Program of the Department of Pathology, an annual event which was proposed by our Chairman, Dr. Jiaoti Huang, with the goal of building collaboration and community between faculty and trainees, and between the clinical and basic science pillars of the Department. 

Attendees highly praised the chance to exchange ideas and discussion between the clinical- and research-focused staff. 

“This is a great event today," said Pakawat Chongsathidkiet, a graduate student working in Dr. Peter Fecci's Lab.  "We got very inspiring talks from alumni and faculty in the program, gathered together as a Pathology family. This is really eye-opening for me, it contributes to what I am going to do in the future, the direction of study I am going to pursue from now on, so this has really broadened my horizons with more options to think about.”

PhD student Sim Singh added, “That this event brings the molecular and pathology/histology arms of the department together is fantastic.  We saw a good combination of clinical research and basic molecular research.”  Sim works with Dr. Yiping He's Lab.

According to Co-Chief Resident Rachel Jug, MD, “The most valuable takeaway came from our guest speaker:  a lot of the points he made resonated with me, to be very passionate about your work and combine it with grit, to not give up on what you’re passionate about. To allow yourself to have creative and crazy ideas that go against the grain and pursue them, but also be prepared to change course!”

First year resident Marcel Castor, MD offered: “I learned that research is a daunting task that definitely requires perseverance and grit, and that you never know where life is going to take you.”

Laura Valente, a first year graduate student working in Dr. Anthony Filiano’s lab, summed it up: ““Don’t give up, because you’re not going to get to where you want to be.”  I think that’s a good takeaway for anybody.”

(See the GradBlog post for more details from Program Director Dr. Soman Abraham).

Here is just a sampling of photos, starting with the group of speakers, followed by a few captured moments from the day.

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(POST UPDATED 9/6/2018)