ICRE: Not just a conference, it’s an experience

Royal College Staff
March 4, 2020 | Author: Royal College Staff

Last year, we introduced our ICRE 2020 Chief Residents: Dr. Patrick Boreskie, University of Manitoba, Dr. Greta McLachlan, Cleveland Clinic London, Dr. Brandon Tang, University of British Columbia (UBC), and Dr. Andria Tatem, Baylor College of Medicine.

The four had never attended ICRE before last year’s event, which was held in Ottawa, Canada. They learnt about it from their entourage who described it as an exciting, engaging and thought-provoking conference, where they would connect with medical education (MedEd) leaders and learners from across the globe.

We asked them to share their thoughts on ICRE 2019, what prompted them to attend the conference, what they are most looking forward to at ICRE 2020, and why every resident/trainee should join them.

“People had told me that ICRE was a vibrant conference where I would make both national and international connections that I would maintain for the rest of my career. And so far this has turned out to be true,” says Dr. Boreskie.

“I came to ICRE because it is an event that is focused on residency education. It provides an opportunity to meet like-minded people. I connected with many people during the networking reception, plenaries, workshops and during the resident survival panel, and I’m still in touch with them,” adds Dr. Tatem.

ICRE is transforming residency education

ICRE is entirely dedicated to advancing residency education. It values residents’ input and encourages them to be part of the journey to transform MedEd. As Dr. McLachlan describes it, “ICRE organizers are open-minded, they want to hear your views and talk to you. I was lucky to have been one of the ICRE 2019 plenary panelists,” she says.

Each year, the ICRE planning committee strives to bring a conference program that inspires attendees to implement projects that enhance residents’ experiences and patient care. A workshop, entitled “WTF…Was That Truly a Failure? Utilizing Experiences to Normalize Failure” is one of many projects that have emerged as a result of ICRE. It started with a conversation between Dr. Tatem and two collaborators she met at ICRE 2019, and it involves creating a growth mindset curriculum to get people to look at failure in residency education differently.

The four residents applied for the ICRE’s Chief Residents roles immediately after ICRE 2019. Their profiles stood out from a record number of outstanding applications received from residents from across the world. For Dr. Tang, the first ICRE experience solidified his decision to want to become one of the ICRE 2020 Chief Residents. “I knew that I wanted to be part of this incredible community,” he explains.

As ICRE 2020 Chief Residents, they collaborate with our program advisory board in designing an engaging program by bringing a residents’ perspective. They are also actively involved in promoting the conference through their networks. This year’s conference theme is Next Generation Residency Education: Game Changers and Proven Practices. The ICRE Chief Residents are looking forward to discovering new innovations in MedEd, the unfolding of new ideas they have planned for ICRE 2020, and reconnecting with old friends and making new connections.

When asked why residents/trainees should join them at the September 24-26, 2020 conference in Vancouver, Canada, they described ICRE as a conference that prioritizes an environment that is inclusive, enjoyable, inspiring and safe for residents to talk about their ups and downs in residency.

“ICRE can change a resident’s career trajectory. It has a momentum where you leave and want to implement a few things you learned. It’s the only conference that is about residency education and so if you love MedEd, this is the place to be,” share Drs. Boreskie and Tatem.

For Dr. McLachlan, ICRE is a platform that gives residents access to global MedEd network and an opportunity to be part of the conversation which is about residency education. “Residents have an opportunity to have their voices heard and so it’s important for them to be part of this conversation,” she explains.

“I left the conference feeling inspired that so many students, residents and staff are working together to make our experience as learners better. While the conference itself was an amazing time, what I cherished most was returning home to my studies feeling revitalized, with innumerable new ideas, collaborators, and goals,” says Dr. Tang who is thrilled that his hometown, Vancouver, will be hosting ICRE 2020. He is looking forward to welcoming all those who love MedEd, representing ICRE and Canada.