Rationale and Objectives There has been waxing and waning of popularity of radiology as a career choice over the last few years. These fluctuations may in part be due to misconceptions such as the perceived lack of patient contact, as well as the perception of decreasing numbers of entry-level jobs. To address such misconceptions, it is important to reach medical students early in their training, both to give them a comprehensive and balanced understanding of radiology practice, and to appropriately frame radiologists as clinicians. Realizing the benefits of direct student outreach, a number of medical specialties are moving toward more direct recruitment efforts often through student interest groups and career fairs. The Medical Student Radiology Expo (MSRE) was proposed and executed by the Alliance of Medical Students Educators in Radiology, which was supported by the Association of University Radiologists (AUR) and the American College of Radiology. The MSRE was held immediately after the 2016 AUR annual meeting and hosted at the Moores Cancer Center at the University of California, San Diego. The goals of the MSRE were threefold: (1) to showcase radiology as a distinct and exciting specialty to all medical students, (2) to foster an interest in pursuing a career in radiology among medical students, and (3) to create a distributable and customizable combined symposium and workshop that could be easily replicated elsewhere. Methods The activities of this 1-day expo started with a morning of didactic elements, including a session identifying inaccurate myths surrounding radiology, specific details of interest pertaining to diagnostic radiology and interventional radiology residency programs, followed by interactive imaging diagnosis games, and question and answer sessions. A casual lunch with faculty members and attendees provided for more sustained direct and informal interactions between the students and the faculty. During the afternoon sessions, students participated in hands-on workshops, including ultrasound, imaging-guided biopsies, catheter manipulation, and post-processing image analysis, as well as roundtable discussions about radiology with the faculty. Results The results from the post-program survey of the medical students were overall positive. Conclusions The MSRE, with the combined efforts of multiple organizations, was successful. A customizable, modular toolkit has been posted on the AUR website. Using this toolkit as a template, this recruitment and informational activity can be replicated at individual institutions, local radiology chapters, multidisciplinary meetings, and radiology meetings.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging