A year in review - Part 2 of 3
Today is Pedro Garcia da Silva (Manager of Teaching Lab) and Javier Morales (Radiation oncologist) turn to tell us about what 2016 has brought them and what are their expectations for the next year, in the second part of the series "A year in review".
Pedro Garcia da Silva - Teaching Lab Manager
2016 was essentially a transition and adaptation year. I finished my dissertation work in Cold Spring Harbor and I arrived in time to start working with the students from the 2015 International Neuroscience Doctoral Programme (INDP), where I helped with the experimental component of the PhD programme. Of course, during this time I was worried about defending my thesis, which luckily went super smoothly.
For 2017, I'm excited about yet another year of classes for INDP and summer courses. We are moving towards a more project based approach in teaching for the PhD programme, with a more robust experimental component. For summer courses, we are hosting the first edition of the FENS-CAJAL Neural Circuits course, which will focus on the different ways in which you can manipulate and probe neural circuits. I'm also hoping, towards the second half of the year, to scale up advanced educational activities of Champalimaud Research (CR), namely in technical fields, such as optics.
Also, as a member of the CR’s Support Platforms, we are moving towards a more integrative approach to technology development in the research community, where we will focus on creating open source hardware and software tools for experimental control.
Javier Morales - Radiation Oncologist
Personally, this year has been really big for me – changing from a fellowship to a full-time contracted member of the radiation oncology team, which feels really nice! As a Unit, one of the main achievements of this year was creating some protocols to build teams devoted to the various specialties here. For example, my team has been working mostly with the Breast Unit, which means we can work more closely with the doctors and nurses in that particular unit, offering fairer and faster consultation slots for patients, something we hope to continue into the future. And we are continuing to grow, with new staff joining and new equipment, such as new MRI and PET CT scanners which will arrive soon. This is great because, once again, we can reduce patient’s waiting time and give more flexibility to the patients.
Something I am already looking forward to next year, which will be a new challenge for my future starting in 2017, is working more closely with the Digestive team. I am also writing a ‘Protocol on Oesophagal Cancer’ with Joaquim Gago [a medical oncologist in our Digestive Unit] and, hopefully, other specialists in surgery and gastroenterology. We are going to really focus on this area next year, and after the protocol has been written, we will reevaluate the direction of our research and see what is going on around the world in this field. So, an exciting year ahead, I hope!