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Welcome

Welcome to the YSA PhD Symposium

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Stefan Böhm

Dear Colleagues,

it is a true pleasure to be able to welcome you to this year’s PhD Symposium of the Young Scientist Association (YSA) at the Medical University of Vienna (MedUniWien). This is the 16th in the series of such symposia which have become an old tradition at what might be regarded a comparably young university.

From its very first day of independence in 2004, MedUniWien has been offering doctoral education in full compliance with the Salzburg II recommendations established in the Bologna Process in order to ensure highest standards of doctoral education in Europe. One year later, our first PhD Symposium took place and established a series of annual events until 2020. Last year, abstract submission deadline was on March 15, the last day before Austria slid into the first SARS-CoV2-related restriction of public life. As a more distant consequence, the 2020 PhD symposium had to be cancelled, and our illusory hope then was to continue with regular annual YSA PhD symposia in 2021. 

Meanwhile, universities have adapted to the pandemic situation and top out at educating students in distant mode. Luckily, doctoral students at MedUniWien are employed as early stage researchers and thereby enabled to continue working on their thesis projects. Nevertheless, the situation did not permit to conceive the 2021 YSA PhD symposium as event with attendance in person. Still, YSA members joined forces to set up this memorable virtual symposium, and I would like to thank them for all their efforts: you have done a great job, indeed!

I would like to take advantage of this opportunity to personally thank Leila Akkari, Barbara Casadei, Josep Dalmau, David Sampson, and Jessica Strid, the renowned keynote lecturers, for their contribution to this virtual event; we highly appreciate that you are willing to share your distinguished expertise with our doctoral candidates. Moreover, I would like to express my gratitude to the members of the Rector’s team for their continuous support of the doctoral school at MedUniWien and to all the other sponsors; without their help it would not be possible to organize this PhD Symposium. Finally, I wish all of you enchantment, enlightenment, and pleasure when participating in one or more of the virtual sessions! We are delighted that you join YSA to make this meeting a true success.

Stefan Boehm,

Director of the Doctoral School at the Medical University of Vienna