Women in Cardiology

women-in-cardiology-introThe Cardiovascular Division at Washington University School of Medicine strives to foster an environment that supports women who are interested in pursuing a career in cardiovascular medicine.  We seek to provide opportunities for women to strengthen their professional support system and leadership skills through networking events, professional development and mentoring programs.  We take great pride in the composition of our training program.  Of the nine fellows in our 2016 first year fellowship class, five are women. Moreover, four out of six advanced fellows (interventional, electrophysiology, and heart failure) are women.

Initiative for Mentoring, Promoting Networking and Advocacy for Cardiology Trainees: The IMPACT Program

Mentorship is an important method through which the cardiovascular division assists women trainees in achieving their career goals . The Initiative for Mentoring, Promoting Networking and Advocacy for Cardiology Trainees (IMPACT) program, headed by Dr. Sharon Cresci . was launched in 2014. It provides female fellows the opportunity to connect with and be mentored by current faculty as well as network with past alumni. These experiences foster both personal and professional development, and promote leadership, career, and research opportunities, both during fellowship and after graduation. Our program recognizes that women fellows may face unique challenges during fellowship training and while preparing for the transition from fellowship to early career. To help with this, Dr. Cresci serves as the “fellow liaison” with an open-door policy for all female fellows with questions, problems or challenges that arise during the fellowship training.

Nishtha Sodhi, a current interventional fellow describes her involvement with IMPACT: “As a female interventional cardiology fellow, it has been personally important for me to identify attending cardiologists who once traveled down the path I will embark on. Their success stories in balancing the demands of an invasive specialty, expectations in academics, and family responsibilities have been motivation that I, too, can strive for what was previously called ‘the impossible.’ Such interaction and support is provided by programs like IMPACT. Having interviewed across the country at many cardiology programs, I am grateful that my fellowship has such a resource, since it is not in place at many training programs. IMPACT provides support, networking, and leadership throughout fellowship and beyond and it is exactly the type of program that will help launch the next generation of successful women in cardiology.”