Yesterday was the Northeast Regional SICB meeting for the DVM (Division of Vertebrate Morphology) and DCB (Division of Comparative Biomechanics) groups, and it was awesome. I wish I could say I ‘thoroughly enjoyed’ it, but there were definitely a few moments were I gladly spent my attention doodling rather than listening. For the most part, though, it was a day well spent learning about a lot of ongoing or potential research, hearing perspectives from those with a lot of experience in their fields, and seeing friends.
So, how is regional SICB different from ‘Big SICB’ (the massive one I’m presenting at again in January)?
Well, first, it’s only a single day, and not a week-long venture. Still energy draining though. Talks went from 9 until 5pm (versus 3pm, as at Big SICB), and they were in a single room. You didn’t have to pick and choose and worry about missing anything, which was nice. And almost all the talks were 5 minutes long with ~1 minute for questions. There were 8 ‘perspective’ talks from legends, experts, opinionated professors that each went for 10 minutes, and these talks opened and closed the four sections of the day (i.e. arrival – coffee break, coffee break – lunch, lunch – coffee break, coffee break – done). The perspectives ranged from giving advice about being flexible in your career path and how to advise undergrads looking for research to longer big-picture talks about research and the course of your field.
And no matter who I talked to, regardless of their age or experience, they said that making a 5 minute talk is way harder than a 15-20 minute talk.
Kudos to everyone who did it. I’ll probably join in on the fun next year.
If you’re in the SE, there’s still time to join the SE Regional SICB! It’s too late to submit a talk, but you can do what I did and just hang out, network, learn more about your field, etc. Good fun.
See you all at Big SICB!! I’m opening the ‘Bioinspiration: Cats’ Paws and Catapults’ session! It’s the last day of the conference and right after lunch, so we’ll see if there’s even an audience, but still. What a cool session title! I’m not too worried. There’s no way my talk this year can be worse than last year.