MD-PhD Social and Professional Activities

Social activities are an essential component of the student experience at Dartmouth and serve as a venue for building intellectual connections among students and faculty. These activities provide opportunities to increase students' didactic knowledge of science and to learn about the personal and professional career choices of physician-scientists. These activities foster interactions among our students, allowing them to stay connected during the various phases of their training while at Dartmouth and after they leave. Social activities include:

Welcome Dinner

This typically takes place in the Fall and is hosted by the program director’s lovely home located in the tranquil environs of the Upper Valley. The Director, Operations Director, and current trainees have the opportunity to reconnect after the summer, and to meet and welcome the newest MD-PhD trainees. The Dean of the Medical School often attends each one of these annual events. This event serves as a warm social gathering to begin the new academic year.

Annual Retreat

The retreat takes place over a two-day period. There are several guest speakers from within and outside of Dartmouth, as well as poster and podium presentations by students on their research endeavors. Additional sessions are devoted to residency choices, career opportunities, and transitions between training phases. Non-scheduled time allows students and faculty to interact in a casual and informal environment.

Annual Spring Dinner & Medical Grand Rounds

The Spring Dinner is hosted by the MD-PhD Program and held in conjunction with the Department of Medicine's Grand Rounds, which takes place on the following day. MD-PhD students select and host a guest speaker, and the Department of Medicine co-sponsors the speaker.

Monthly Student Chalk Talks

Students gather one evening a month for informal presentations of their research at these student-only events. This encourages free exchanges among the students so that they can comment on each other's work and suggest new strategies. An effort is made to schedule the chalk talks with the MD-PhD interview schedule in mind so that prospective students can get a glimpse of the fantastic work carried out by members of the Dartmouth MD-PhD student cohort. In addition, as there is always homemade food at this gathering, each evening serves as a great way for members of our community to keep in touch with one another.

MD-PhD Conferences (Regional & National)

National MD-PhD Keystone Conference (University of Colorado MSTP)

The UCHS MD-PhD Keystone conference set in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado is the oldest conference for physician scientist trainees. It is run by the UCHS students and welcomes students from across the USA. Faculty attendees include program directors, department heads, Nobel laureates and NIH leaders. Dartmouth sends one student each year to this conference, and encourages them to report on what they learned. The conference is specifically designed for MD-PhD trainees to network with leaders in a variety of specialties (oncologists to surgeons to neonatologists) and from a variety of settings (academia, government and industry). In addition to scientific sessions from leaders in biochemistry, genetics, engineering, microbiology and neuroscience, there are career development sessions specifically geared towards physician scientists.

American Physician Scientists Association (APSA - National Meeting)

Geared towards meeting the needs of the budding physician-scientist, the American Physician Scientist Association is a student-run organization that holds its national meeting annually in Chicago. This meeting is typically held in conjunction with the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI) and the American Association of Physicians (AAP). Each year, Dartmouth has several representatives from the MD-PhD program at the joint meetings—with some students winning travel and scientific awards at the meetings. The meeting provides a great opportunity for students in training to interface with students from other institutions and with residency directors from training hospitals nationwide.

American Physician Scientists Association (APSA - Regional)

Since 2007, APSA has held its Northeast regional meeting at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, NY. Often held in the late fall (Oct/Nov), Dartmouth's program is well represented by a large contingency who go down for the day-long conference geared towards providing information and networking opportunities to physician-scientist trainees.

Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS)

This weekend conference specifically highlights medically related research being performed by undergraduate minority students across the country. The Dartmouth MD-PhD program sends a representative to this meeting to begin interfacing with these very talented students, some of whom decide to pursue joint degrees in medicine and science.