On 29th October 2022, KUMA held its first ever Membership Training and Academic Conference in Chigwell, London. It was a hugely anticipated event which was met with plenty of enthusiasm as evidenced by an impressive number of KUMA members attending the event despite their busy doctor’s schedule.
The day started off with an ice breaker since there were some new faces of KUMA attending this event. As a group of doctors from Korean ethnic background, this obviously involved sharing our MBTI’s, a personality indicator that has recently become a trending topic of conversation amongst young Koreans. As each of us declared our MBTI, there were nods of approval from different factions of the room to celebrate their matching personality types, and by the end, we found ourselves having a good mix of different characters in the room which translated into a promising formula for a successful retreat. Following on from this, we had the academic forum in which oral presentations and posters from varying specialties were given. The talk included: a surgical case on the management of cholecystitis in the context of a rare anatomical variation of the gallbladder; systematic review on the management of neonatal limb ischaemia; case study on the complication of fat reconstruction in hemifacial atrophy; case series report on optimising procedural sedation. This was overall a very insightful session for all the attendees, who showed a lot of interest in the subsequent Q&A session, and the talks were delivered at the highest level which highlighted the incredible amount of talent and passion our KUMA members have in a diverse range of medical fields.
After a busy schedule of posters and oral presentations, our empty stomachs were welcomed by a barbeque party. This was an unconventional 3-course meal comprising of grilled LA ribs and pork belly, followed by tteok-bokki and luxury sundubu ramen, which meant there was no room for a starter nor a dessert. It was no exaggeration to say that every single dish was top-class as our chopsticks endlessly landed on the dinner plates to grab onto every last piece of food, and we would like to send a huge shout-out to the senior committee members who have tirelessly prepared for the evening meal. Following on from this, we had a series of quizzes and games to wrap up the night. There was a mix of music trivia quizzes, charades and an upgraded edition of truth or dare utilising a lie detector. This was a great opportunity for our KUMA members to interact and get to know each other, and by the end we were comfortable enough to sing along together in a late-night karaoke session.
Reflecting on this, as a F1 doctor attending my first KUMA event, I absolutely enjoyed spending my weekend with like-minded colleagues, and meeting new people in varying specialties and stages of their training. It was insightful to converse with others about the diverse range of opportunities that are available in medicine and to learn a few tips and tricks on surviving as a junior doctor on the ward. I was able to really relax and enjoy myself over the two days which was like an oasis during a busy medicine rotation as my first job, and I would like to thank our KUMA members who have selflessly helped to arrange and organise the event. I hope this has set a precedent for more future KUMA events of similar calibre and I would highly recommend others to join us for the next and future events!
[After writing the above, Dr Taesoon Hwang later became an active KUMA committee member!]