First Conference in the middle of Mountains- Banff Inflammation Workshop 2015

By Sharmin Begum, PhD Candidate (Chadee lab)

The biannual Banff Inflammation Workshop (BIW) is organized by the Inflammation Research Network (IRN) group at the University of Calgary. This group comprises a wide network of national and international investigators and educators including members from different parts of Canada, Europe, Australia and South America. The main purpose of this meeting is to bring together the leading investigators working on a variety of inflammatory diseases.

I am in my second year of PhD program in Microbiology, Immunology and Infectious Diseases and BIW was my first conference where I was able to show my research work in front of a large group of people.

We started the first day with the registration and after that we had a delicious dinner along with the entertaining talk from Mauro Perretti. The night was peaceful and quiet. On the next day I woke up after a refreshing sleep and I was surprised to have a buffet breakfast sitting by a window with spectacular views of mountains. Really this is an awesome feeling for me. With such a fresh mind I started the long day with back-to-back talks from different faculty members. After all the wonderful inflammation research talks there was a trainee session by Dr. Simon Hirota that covered preparation for an interview and how to prepare the CV. This overwhelming day finished with dinner.

On the second day, I started with the same fresh mind and went for different talks. On that day all the trainees had to present their poster and they were judged. There was prestigious prizes for the best poster presenter.I was excited as it was my first poster presentation after starting my program. I was judged by Dr. Simon Hirota and Dr. Morley Hollenberg and it was really nice as they asked me questions about my research hypothesis, significance of my work, etc.. I enjoyed this session as trainees were able to show their research work to different faculty members and able to receive good suggestions.

During this conference we all went out to a Swiss-Italian restaurant for dinner. We had Swiss cheese and chocolate fondue which was the most attractive food of the dinner. This was a very pleasant experience for me and I hope to attend this conference again.  I am really thankful to HPI for their travel funding to attend such a wonderful meeting in the mountains. I am looking forward to the next BIW conference which will be in Montreal.

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