By Oren Fix, MD, MSc, FAASLD
It’s natural to feel overwhelmed the first time you attend The Liver Meeting®. The meeting program is packed with overlapping sessions and the convention center is packed with thousands of people. I wish someone had written a guide for beginners for my first Liver Meeting®, so I wrote one for you. After you read this, you’ll know where to begin and you’ll start to see The Liver Meeting® not only as the premiere place to learn about the latest advances in liver disease, but also the place to learn some of the basics, network with your peers and meet new people.
There is no single Liver Meeting® for everyone. The meeting is designed to have many things happening at once because attendees have varying interests. There will inevitably be simultaneous sessions that you want to attend and you’ll have to make choices. But if you can’t decide or don’t want to, take a look at the suggested schedule in Table 1. The best part of this schedule is there is nothing overlapping. Consider this your starting point. If you don’t want to make any more choices, go with this schedule and I promise you won’t go wrong. For more tips, see Table 2.
This is a day of events programmed just for you (see Table 1). You’re going to want to go to these sessions.
You will need to take a break once in a while, to network, meet up with friends or just relax and take in all you’re learning.
It may be hard to believe at your first Liver Meeting®, but the world of hepatology is relatively small. Networking at this meeting is as critical to your career as learning about the latest research. Make an effort to meet new people, including your peers and AASLD leaders. These are people you will see again and again at future meetings, on the interview trail and throughout your career. The connections you make at this meeting can open doors and lead to significant opportunities, and can also lead to strong, lasting friendships. Take time to nurture these new relationships.
The following events are great opportunities for networking at The Liver Meeting®:
Start with the default schedule in the table above. You won’t go wrong if you attend most of these sessions.
If you have more time, review the program or registration guide before the meeting and highlight your can’t-miss sessions. Create an itinerary for yourself before the meeting but don’t be afraid to deviate from it on the fly.