Congratulations to Kerri Devine and Suhel Ashraff on their election to the STC as trainee representatives! We wish them the best of luck in their new roles, and look forward to supporting them in helping to develop our training programme. Their winning manifestos are included below:
Suhel Ashraff ST6
‘My name is Suhel Ashraff. I am ST6 in Diabetes and Endocrinology.
Specialist training at present is being shaped to be trainee led, hence every opportunity to get involved and influence how we are trained needs to be grabbed with both hands. This is my fundamental reason to step forward for this prestigious post. I believe I can make the trainee voice heard and be an effective link between the consultant colleagues and the trainees.
To ensure effective communication among trainees to discuss training matters, relay the views and concerns of trainees as a group from their training perspective to the Committee and channel the Committee’s views back to my colleagues will be my first and foremost priority. The post will enable me on behalf of my colleagues to highlight, communicate and be involved in discussions and actions for improving the standard of our training programme which apart from making the programme more conducive for existing trainees can also make it more attractive for trainees around the country wishing to join the specialty in our region. My past experience in the clinical as well as academic posts will help me understand the different challenges that face us during our training journey. I will ensure any concerns or difficulties you may have regarding the training programme are addressed appropriately.’
Kerri Devine ST3
As a newcomer both to the region and to D&E training, I believe I can bring some fresh eyes and enthusiasm to our training programme as trainee representative. Having four more years ahead of me allows me to provide not only continuity as a point of liaison with the STC, but also time to develop and see through new projects and changes to our curriculum.
As we know, in response to the Greenaway report there is a move towards more generalised medical training, and I believe a key aspect of this role would be ensuring that there is a balance between preparing us adequately for our increasingly complex patients and the demands of the medical take, whilst still protecting our own needs and interests as specialists, in both time and content. The programme must also adapt to our changing relationship with primary care in the new model of community diabetes management, with focus on developing leadership skills and mentoring colleagues, and I would like to see trainees encouraged to take an active role at the interface. I am aware that the STC will soon be discussing changes to the obesity curriculum and would look to take full advantage of the leading MDT services we have in Northumbria, Middlesbrough and Sunderland to contribute to the implementation of this. Liaison with other regions would enable us to share ideas and resources for improving training quality and I would be particularly keen to (re)establish expert regional sessions beyond CME such as insulin pump training.
As we know, the North East has an excellent reputation in research and I would work closely with our local academic teams to highlight upcoming opportunities for grants and fellowships to promote full and fair access to trainees working in all areas of the deanery.
I would also like to see more socialisation in the group (surely a job fit for a Glaswegian?!). This could be both intra and extra-curricular – from organised exam study groups through to a start of year welcoming dinner and events after CME, it would be great to get to know each other in less formal surroundings.’