A life-changing dessert topped with a cherry
AAD member Maria Teresa García-Romero, MD, MPH, IFAAD had her professional life changed through the Academic Dermatology Leadership Program.
Dr. García-Romero’s story
I completed the Academic Dermatology Leadership Program (ADLP) in 2021. I can say the ADLP was one of the most relevant and transforming events in my professional life. Our class was a bit different because of the COVID-19 pandemic, so we were not able to have the usual in-person reunions and activities other classes do. I became part of a group of dermatologists facing the same obstacles and questions. How can I become a better teacher? How can I obtain a good work-life balance? How can I engage trainees? How can I collaborate with colleagues and successfully build on teamwork?
Along the one and a half years the program lasted, we met virtually every few weeks to share tips and experiences with each other as well as reviewing topics and presenting them by teams. As part of the program we had an evaluation of our talents and leadership styles with Trish Moore, which helped me understand what I am best at, what my added value to the team is, and the behaviors that complement mine.
My appointed mentor was John Harris, MD, PhD, FAAD. We met regularly to discuss my areas of academic opportunity and improvement. Being a successful and innovative researcher, he was able to provide extremely valuable advice and tools to make the most of my time and resources, in order to produce valuable research. He could relate to my own particular circumstances as a junior academic dermatologist with a tiny fraction of the resources he can access.
Finally, the in-person Leadership Forum was the cherry on top of the dessert: a weekend full of motivating and stimulating sessions among some of the top dermatology leaders of the AAD.
I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the ADLP. Without a doubt I can say I am not only a more productive, wiser academic dermatologist, but also a happier and more inspired person.
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