What it means to be a SIG Junior Deputy

Published 13 November 2018

Alessandra Alteri, Junior Deputy of the SIG SQART, describes how she applied for the post and, with so many personal gains in the role, encourages others to submit an application at the next round of elections.

Becoming Junior Deputy of the SIG Safety & Quality in ART was relatively easy and straightforward. I applied by submitting my CV and motivation letter - and two months later I was accepted for the post. Now, a year later, the role has given me opportunities above and beyond all my expectations, and I hope that this experience, described below, will motivate and inspire others to apply for a Junior Deputy position in the upcoming call.

In my case, the drive to get involved with the SIG stemmed from my fundamental wish to learn more about safety and quality in ART. I was expecting to dedicate a big chunk of my free time to the literature and developing a spherical knowledge of the subject which would ultimately take my own clinical practice to the highest level. I was also very keen to meet people with whom I shared a common interest but also get to know more people in the family of ESHRE. Foremost, I was signing up for something which would help make me a better professional.

The role emerged with a variety of responsibilities, sometimes different from the ones that I anticipated. For example, I was positively surprised to be assigned the role of social media facilitator for my SIG, for which I operate the official Facebook and Twitter accounts of the SIG with regular news and updates of our community but also of ESHRE in general. Many of my posts on these platforms include interesting and novel references on safety and quality in IVF - education is high on the SIG’s priority agenda. And this encounter with social media is proving a stepping-stone in my own education, as I find myself reading and learning a lot more than ever before. I share my reads with great excitement and hope that the community finds these reads stimulating as well.

On another note, I was pleasantly surprised to be given the chance to participate in the organisation of our Campus events and Annual Meeting’s precongress courses. I am excited for the opportunity to suggest speakers and topics for these events – a responsibility instrumental in my overall training. Active participation as a chair or speaker in these events has already allowed me to boost my network and finally meet some of the experts I have always admired and respected. I attend various meetings both with the members of my SIG and with Junior Deputies of other SIGs, where we brainstorm forthcoming activities and/or relevant topics - for example, approaches to increase the involvement of young people in Annual Meetings.

I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to serve ESHRE through my role. I encourage anyone with expertise in their field, eager to contribute to the educational effort of ESHRE and enthusiasm for social media outreach to get involved with a SIG of their choice. In a few months, I will be handing over my role to the next Junior Deputy of the SIG SQART. If you are interested in putting your own candidature forward, make sure to update the topics of interest section in your ESHRE profile. In this way, later in Spring when the position becomes available, you will be notified with an e-mail prompting you to apply. Our SIG is characterised by a balance of gynecologists and embryologists and, as I am an embryologist, we are looking for a medical doctor as the next Junior Deputy.