2nd EurocanPlatform translational research course is good for networking

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Published: 6 Jan 2015
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Dr Diana Montezuma, Portuguese Oncology Institute of Porto, Portugal

Dr Montezuma speaks to ecancer at the 2nd EurocanPlatform Translational Research Course about her reasons and motivations for attending the course.

She explains what she learned from her week in the Algarve and why she would recommend others apply to attend in 2015.

Learn more about the EurocanPlatform project here

My supervisor sent us an email, actually, with course information and I think what interested me the most was the fact that it had some well-known researchers that I knew some of the work and it’s hard to see them elsewhere, or it’s not too easy to see them in these kinds of courses sometimes, so I was glad.

What were your expectations of the course and were they fulfilled?

I really enjoyed the course because I was expecting this kind of course with a general approach. I was able to learn many different techniques that we don’t use in our lab because we work mainly in epigenetics but it’s also good for us, especially for me starting now, to learn about other kinds of approaches to cancer surveillance and treatment.

What have you taken away from the course?

I got some ideas of things that I can probably use now during my thesis. Many things I won’t be able to do because you need other kinds of equipment but you have these ideas and now I will read this paper and know more about this technique, maybe I can use it. At least I am leaving with some new ideas, like I want to test this or I want to try if I can make this.

Which talks stood out?

We all really enjoyed René Bernards’ one because my friend was telling it was really inspirational and I think it really was because we had this positive message, so it will be possible to get better at cancer staging and cancer treatment and there’s an optimistic view. Because most people would say, “Oh, it’s so difficult. We are studying this for years and years and we really are not able to cure it yet.” Yes, so I think that one was very good and I also liked one today about different models of cell lines because I’ve learned about 3D models and I think that it’s exciting for what I am doing, so I really enjoyed that one also. But I enjoyed most of them.

What has this course offered that others haven’t?

The thing that I liked most and probably it’s not so common in other courses is it was kind of informal. You could meet the speakers and you could ask questions, then we all meet at night or it’s lunchtime. You can ask them questions after the presentations and you can even… today they were saying, “Oh students, ask. We want students to ask things.” So this is a bit different but we enjoyed that also.

Would you recommend the course to others?

Yes, I would recommend it for someone that is doing the things that we do, like for PhD students, post-docs. I would definitely recommend it because I think you get to know these people that are doing actually the articles that we read. So you get to know them and you can ask and you can meet so many people that are doing different things and you can connect. Then maybe you can work with them on something, so yes.