Lindsey Aurora, MD
1st year Cardiology Fellow, Henry Ford Hospital
Cardiologists, fellows in training, residents, and medical students gathered for the 10th anniversary of the Michigan Chapter's Women in Cardiology Annual Business Meeting at Hyde Park Steakhouse in Northville in January. The gloomy weather was quickly forgotten as the enthusiasm and energy of this group of women filled the room.
The event was sponsored by ZOLL LifeVest®who started the evening off by speaking about the concerning prevalence of heart failure and constant need for life saving therapies including wearable ICDs. With increasing sex disparities noted in the optimal treatment for our female population, there was a request for providers’ involvement to further the discussion of improved and equitable care for our at-risk population.
Dr. Mattina, our WIC chair, continued the evening with inspiring words of wisdom. The theme of this year was established as “Get a Title, Join a Board, Refer a Friend.” Anecdotal and group discussion was held about building one’s value through defining and meeting expectations, findings areas to excel, making a plan and executing it. The ongoing need for equity and sponsorship in achieving value-based career goals was prominent for our current and future women leaders. How can you make a difference? How will your strongest attributes allow you to contribute?
Diversity and inclusion in medicine, especially in Cardiology, still merit substantial attention. With our strong and fierce #WIC leadership, we look forward to more inspiring sessions for a productive year as Michigan Women in Cardiology.
MD Candidate Class of 2023, Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine
I feel a strange mix of freedom and anxiety when I walk into a room full of people who I know are more experienced, qualified and competent than myself. I’ve become used to this feeling in my limited time in hospitals and at conferences as a first-year medical student with just over a semester of schooling under my belt. My interest in cardiology sprouted from a few significant personal experiences: holding my family members’ hands while they got echos and cardiac function tests, shadowing physicians, and leading a mediastinal dissection where I got to see and hold a heart for the first time, and see how perfectly engineered, consistent and complex this living machine is. Being invited to the Michigan WIC Dinner was an opportunity too exciting to pass up, even though it meant sacrificing time studying the wonders of the lymphatic system.
At the event I had the opportunity to talk to and learn from some incredible residents, fellows, and attendings on unique paths with the common goal of increasing the presence and power of women in cardiology on the state and national level. In addition to learning about some lifesaving technologies and how to increase our value to our employers and peers, we took turns identifying our strengths and making plans of how we could specifically implement them to achieve our goals. I happened to be sitting with two first year fellows and two third year fellows who all worked together at the same hospital, and one of my favorite parts of the night was seeing these women comment on the traits and skills they admired in each other. It was a gift to see such collegiality and encouragement be shared in such a sincere way. I walked into this event feeling insecure and out of place, sitting down at a table full of strangers, but walked out feeling embraced by each of them, inspired to start taking small steps that, with time, might become big leaps.