Published on in Children's Doctor
Where to begin this PANDEMIC issue? I’ll start by stating I hope you are ALL healthy, safe, and finding some time for simple pleasures. Among the many frustrations over these past few months was our disappointment in not being able to host the 2020 Pediatric Academic Society meetings here in Philadelphia. We—our CHOP family—were so excited to have the meeting here, highlight our wonderful, dynamic city and our fabulous pediatric hospital. What a missed opportunity. Alas, we are hoping that by October 2021, all will be well for the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Exhibition slated for Philly.
Despite the cancellation of the PAS meeting, a number of alumni emailed to let me know that they went ahead and held virtual reunions! And despite the challenges of large virtual meetings, our alumni organized class reunions that allowed everyone a chance to catch up and share life’s ups and downs, successes and challenges. It occurs to me that residency is such an intense time of working and training with a (relatively) small group of colleagues, and friendships made during those difficult but amazing years are unique and special.
Personally, I’d like to thank Sara Schutzman, Marian Michaels, Nancy Bridges, and Todd Barron for a wonderful recent virtual “cocktail party.” There weren’t many cocktails, but the time spent together was wonderful and relaxing. And I’d like to thank Rachel Gafni, Evan Fieldston, and Gabi Marein-Efron, who helped organize their reunions.
Thanks to Frances Nadel for this summary of Class of 1995’s event: “The Class of 1995 didn’t let COVID stop us from celebrating our 25th anniversary. Thanks to Rachel Gafni’s organization, we caught up on Zoom for three hours, and in some ways this version was even more intimate than our in-person reunions. We laughed over the memories of being on call (does that even exist now?) and talked about our amazing teachers, whose voices we still hear. But mostly we told stories of our lives as they unfolded, with their triumphs but also the many bumps and challenges to overcome. We agreed that despite the intensity of residency, our relationships with each other made it one of the most meaningful times of our life. We have proclaimed ourselves as the Most Cohesive Class at CHOP."
See photos from all of these events below.
As always, remember our CHOP Alumni motto: Keep … Tradition, Keep … in Mind, Keep … in Touch!
Keep … Tradition: In late May we completed our sixth annual Resident and Fellows Grand Rounds: Pandemic Edition. We had great presentations by residents Courtney Gallagher, MD, MPH, and Arthur Lee, MD, and fellows Barbara Chaiyachati, MD, PhD, and Christopher Thom, MD, PhD. Their talks were all amazing, ranging from racial differences in prenatal diagnoses of congenital anomalies and mortality rates in children in foster care, to metabolomics and machine learning in chronic kidney disease and computational genomics related to improving platelet development for transfusion. The science underlying these research projects is stunning, and all the presentations were fantastic. Congratulations to our speakers, who were selected from many applications, and to their mentors, who provided wonderful guidance.
Keep … in Mind: Getting involved with the Alumni Organization has never been easier, more rewarding, and impactful! I hope you’ll consider making a gift, as well. Visit chopalumni.org today.
And finally, Keep ... in Touch! If you have recently scheduled a virtual get-together, let us know! We are happy to showcase your parties,and hear about your CHOP memories. Until next time, stay safe, work hard, but not too hard, find time to enjoy life, know that this too shall pass, and keep in touch!
Cindy W. Christian, MD
President, CHOP Alumni Association
Not letting the cancellation of PAS get in the way of planned residency class reunions, several classes gathered on Zoom during the first weekend in May. From across the country, these classmates gathered—often with their own children—to catch up and share experiences in managing through this challenging time on their professional and personal fronts. (L) Class of 2006; (R) Class of 2011.