In my mind, the best way to instill the importance of an organization like the Triological Society is at the very beginning of residency training. The earlier in the training that can begin, the more likely someone will set society membership as a goal in their three to five-year post-training window. We want them to do it early enough in their careers so that they don’t get slammed and have no time to pursue it, because there’s work to be done and hoops to jump through.
Explore This IssueApril 2011
We have people who vote with their checkbooks and their feet and come to our meetings. I hope to reach out to those who don’t and try to see what it would take to get them to come, or at least let them know that we’re interested in having them come. I think that kind of outreach will pay off in dividends.
Q: What do you see as the core challenges facing the society?
A: We really need to inspire the rising generation of otolaryngologists. We want to make them understand that membership in the society is something they should seek, that it will make them better otolaryngologists because of the educational offerings we have, and that it will also be a rewarding accomplishment. It’s something not everyone does, and it’s a wonderful benchmark in terms of their own career development and success. Regardless of whether they’re community-based, in the armed forces, in an academic center or at some other location or other form of health care delivery program, we want to encourage all specialists and subspecialists to seek Triological Society membership. It has value for everyone in the field.
We also need to create more opportunities for our members to become involved with the society. Sometimes the perception is that this is “an old boy’s club”, and there’s no question that frequently the leadership is in their late 50s and early 60s. First of all, that is not old! Regardless, we need to find ways to engage our younger members in the society. There’s no question that when you get involved in something—like a program committee or a working committee—there’s more buy-in. I’d like to find ways that we can involve more of our members through committee appointment and provide leadership training for our younger members so they will be better prepared to tackle tasks when given the opportunity.