Tips for FITs: 5 Ways to Make the Most of a Society Conference

I joined ASNC not as a cardiology fellow or during my first three years of practice as an echocardiographer, but when I went back for training as an advanced cardiac imaging fellow (in nuclear cardiology/PET).  My ASNC membership was free—as it is for all FITs who meet basic criteria, which are meant to be inclusive and support career development—and it provided immediate access to guidelines, consensus documents, practice points, the Journal of Nuclear Cardiology (the flagship journal of ASNC) and other tools essential for FITs.  And, importantly, as a FIT member of ASNC I had the opportunity to apply for ASNC's Leadership Development Program (ASNC-LDP).  I was privileged to be selected for this unique program, which opened doors to many collaborations that helped build leadership skills that were invaluable as I launched my hospital's nuclear cardiology program, which now is known for clinical excellence and research. Nuclear cardiology and, most importantly, ASNC were the stepping stones to me becoming an advanced imaging technologist.
Don't wait to join ASNC. Available at ASNC's open door are dozens of opportunities for you to advance your career.  My advice to every nuclear cardiologist-in-training is to attend the ASNC2017 Scientific Sessions and make the most of the experience.  Here's how:
1.Join ASNC, and take advantage of the  Super-Discount Registration deal available for FIT members from now through July 1. 
2.Email ASNC staff and leaders. Tell them you want to get involved in ASNC and will be attending ASNC2017. Set up meetings with them, and then …
4.… Prepare! Think through how you'd like to participate in ASNC. Would you like to help support ASNC's advocacy mission, develop educational programs, participate in writing guidelines? Be ready to explain why you're interested, what you'll bring to the effort and how your experiences will make you an asset to ASNC's efforts.
5.Show up and deliver. When you arrive at ASNC2017, take advantage of every moment. Visit the booth and introduce yourself to the staff there. Attend sessions. Ask questions, offer comments. Tour the Expo and get to know the vendors who are building new products for us. Practice your research presentation and then deliver it with confidence. When it's time for the meetings you arranged with ASNC leaders, share your ideas and listen to theirs. Seize opportunities as they come your way, and have fun!

Dr. Ananthasubramaniam is Professor of Medicine at Wayne State University and Director of the Nuclear Cardiology and Echocardiography Laboratory and Program Director of the Advanced Cardiac Imaging Fellowship and senior staff physician of the Division of Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.