You’ve already heard that expected attendance for this year’s WCIO conference is going to be record breaking. We’re always interested in what our attendees and speakers think of our conference and what it is that brings them back each year. Christos Georgiades, MD, PhD, FSIR is an associate professor of radiology and surgery, as well as the vice chair of the Department of Radiology and director of Interventional Oncology at Johns Hopkins University. We recently sat down with Dr. Georgiades to discuss what he finds are the most valuable aspects of attending the WCIO conference each year.
IO Insights: When did you first attend the WCIO Conference?
Dr. Christos Georgiades: I have been attending WCIO since finishing my fellowship in Interventional Radiology. It is the one conference I make every possible effort to attend. Even during my three-year stint in Europe, I still crossed the Atlantic every year to attend the WCIO Conference.
IO: What attracted you to the event in the first place?
CG: Both the SIR and CIRSE annual conferences are great venues, during which a great deal of knowledge is exchanged. However, there is something unique to the WCIO. To be sure there is the expected exchange of knowledge, but at WCIO there is also transmission of wisdom. From one generation of interventionalists to the next. What attracted me - and continues to do so – is the invited faculty are the trail-blazers in their field. Their hard won wisdom is available to the rest in a more intimate atmosphere.
IO: What are key takeaways from the WCIO Conference?
CG: Because of the smaller size and the greater intimacy, the faculty are very approachable. I would urge the attendees who are in their early or mid-career, to approach the WCIO faculty as mentors, build relationships with colleagues and follow up after WCIO. Let’s not forget those who attend WCIO are either those who made Interventional Oncology what it is today, or those who will make it even better in the future. If you attend the WCIO then you belong to one of those two groups.
IO: What advice would you give to a first-time attendee?
CG: Remember the feeling of excitement and thirst of knowledge you had during your first courses in your freshman year? Recreate it. It’s a steep learning curve and you are “swimming” in a pool of knowledge with potential mentors everywhere. It’s a four-day long “office hour” period with the greatest minds in your field. Talk to them, ask questions, ask for advice and guidance, initiate research and teaching collaborations. Your imagination is the limit.
IO: Will you be joining us again for WCIO 2016 in Boston? If so, what are you most looking forward to at the conference this year?
CG: Absolutely I will be attending the 2016 WCIO, both as faculty and as someone who continues to pursue knowledge. I will be taking my own advice … and what better place to do it than in springtime in Boston, my medical school Alma Mater.
If you haven't already, there's still time to register for the year's best event dedicated to interventional oncology education. Visit the WCIO 2016 event page to register, view our recently updated schedule-at-a-glance, and learn more about the beautiful city of Boston. We look forward to seeing you 9-12 June!