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First ISBS Symposium Spreads Awareness on Importance of Molecular Diagnostics

04 Oct 2018

The ISBS Symposium 2018, with its theme “Molecular Diagnostics: Promises and Possibilities”, was held successfully on 25 August 2018 at the  International Medical University (IMU), Malaysia – the first of its kind to be organised by the IMU Society of Biomedical Science (ISBS). We are proud to have had over 100 participants which had exceeded our target audience number. The event started off with two invited keynote speakers, Dr  Saira Bahnu Mohamed Yousoof and Prof Cheah Yoke Kqueen delivering their enlightening talk on “Recent Advances in Molecular Oncology – From Research to Clinical Diagnostics” and “Challenges of Molecular Testing on Lung Cancer” respectively. The second half of the event was the Oral Presentation where there were 14 participants showcasing their findings and works in various interesting research studies. All the presenters spoke remarkably well about their research findings, and it was definitely a good learning experience for the audience as well as the presenters. A special congratulations to the winners of this competition.

First Prize  Sivananthan Manoharan (University Malaya)
Second Prize  Joshua Kuruvilla (International Medical University)
Third Prize Stefanie Shee Mei En (International Medical University)

We feel extremely grateful for the support of the participants as well as our generous sponsors, NY Steak Shack and Liang Yee Metal Works Sdn Bhd for sponsoring our event. We hope everyone had a fruitful experience from this event and we hope we will receive the same amount of support or more for our future events. Reflection on the Event by Committee Members 

Genieve Yeo Registration and Photographer of ISBS Symposium 2018 Editor of IMU Society of Biomedical Science
It was August 25th, a significant day for the International Medical University Society of Biomedical Science (ISBS) as we held our first symposium with the theme Molecular Diagnostics: Promises and Possibilities. We have been planning this symposium for months, right after the 2018 committee was established in December. The preparations was gruelling and this was in addition to our existing exams and workload. Nevertheless, it was truly a memorable journey with everyone involved. I was in charge of registration and photography of the day. The registration process started slow and our team was trying hard to attract participants. In the end, we managed to exceed our goal with over 140 in attendance. My job was to collect the registration details and correspond with the participants and presenters. Let me be frank, it sounded easy. “I just had to create a google form and let it roll, right?”, I thought. However, I quickly learnt that  laborious work was needed behind the neat table filled with names, especially the emailing. I also soon realised the importance of my name signed at the bottom of each and every email. It was my first time handling such huge numbers in an event, thus, my incompetency peeked through. I made mistakes here and there, and I was disappointed in myself. Part of it was due to the inexperience in handling “Outlook”, but the rest was due to other factors. Hence, I made a mental note to improve myself in the next ventures of ISBS.  I should train myself to be patient and always listen to my fellow committee members who I had to liaise with, mostly, Shee Man (secretary) and Wai Teng (treasurer). I am very thankful for their guidance and support in carrying out my duties. In conclusion, I realised that doing things fast, does not mean doing things efficiently. There are many other components to efficiency. It is the attitude, planning, and communication that make up efficiency, not just speed. All in all my experience can be summarised by a quote by Tokugawa Ieyasu,

“Let thy step be slow and steady, that thou stumble not.”

Su Zhi Yi Design team Leader of ISBS Symposium 2018 Editor of IMU Society of Biomedical Science

“You will only fail to learn if you do not learn from failing.”

The quote from Stella Adler truly summarises my experience in the planning process of the very first ISBS Symposium. The planning process is indeed an inspiring experience for me. I used to be an impetuous person who wanted to finish everything as fast as possible. As a result, I made numerous mistakes in my work and indirectly reduced the efficiency of the group. Furthermore, I had acted by myself most of the time in order to finish the tasks given in a short time. Later, I started to realise the significance of leadership in distribution of tasks as well as the importance of teamwork. As the due date approached, I started to seek for help from my team members and other batchmates, that, in fact, is not difficult at all. It also lessened the burden on me. Therefore, in the future, I should improve myself to become more cautious and patient, and be able to work with others.

Akhila Eswaran Design team member of ISBS Symposium 2018 Editor of IMU Society of Biomedical Science
The very first symposium held by the International Medical University Society of Biomedical Science (ISBS), which took place on 25 August this year, was the result of several months of hard work, passion, sacrifice, and dedication, from all committee members. For this symposium, along with being an editor entrusted with writing of the ISBS Newsletter, I was also part of the Design team, lead by Zhi Yi. We were responsible for designing the name tags of all the participants and presenters, as well as the certificates and the booklets which were handed out on that day. Being a part of this dedicated team wasn’t easy, as the responsibilities given to us were sometimes overwhelming due to the workload of our course, and the challenges I faced in managing my time well. On the day of the ISBS Symposium, I was assigned as a timekeeper for the speakers and the oral presenters, along with Aishah. That experience for me, was a stressful yet exciting one. The reason is that I had to make sure that my attentiveness was maintained throughout the presentations to ensure that fair timekeeping was kept for everyone. Nevertheless, it was fun as I enjoyed ringing the bell. On the whole, this entire journey has been a very meaningful and memorable one for me, right from the moment I was selected as one of the editors for the ISBS committee in October 2017. Although I still have a lot to learn and improve, I’m truly grateful for everything that I’ve gained during my time with the wonderful committee of this society. This event wouldn’t have been as fruitful as it was, if it wasn’t for the teamwork of everyone involved, which can best be summarised through the words of Henry Ford,

“Coming together is a beginning, keeping together is progress, working together is success”.

Jaithra a/p Ramachandran Design team member and game booth representative of ISBS Symposium 2018 Editor of IMU Society of Biomedical Science
ISBS Symposium is the first symposium I’ve ever attended and better yet participated in. This experience has been as pleasant as it has been eye opening thanks to all the seniors and lecturer advisors who have helped and were committed in providing the best guidance for us, the editorial team. To be honest, we were all on the same page when it came to the amount of experience we all had. It was close to none.Nonetheless, after relentless rounds of asking, and gaining knowledge from those of previous experiences, we managed to pull out what we thought was almost impossible. For the first ever Symposium held by IMU, I actually am awestruck by the number of participants who turned up on that day. Even though it was not that big a number, the diversity was admirable. Talks of different varieties were shared from students of our own university – our very own seniors – to students of different universities, including both undergraduate and postgraduate. As mentioned earlier, eye opening is the only way I can describe how much there is beyond what we see in Science. There is yet so much to discover. In this event, what I’ve come to realise is that running an event isn’t as easy and smooth-flowing as it seems. It comes with a lot of effort, work, passion and time. Teamwork is essential and that’s what this Symposium has shown me, not only within the editorial team, but the whole committee. Putting it down in words do not describe enough of how much we’ve committed towards this Symposium and yet we try. Thank you to those who have pulled together to make this a memorable Symposium, not only for us, but for the whole of IMU as well.

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” -Marcel Proust

Aishah Amirah binti Shamsul Kamal Public Relations Manager ISBS Symposium 2018 Chief Editor IMU Society of Biomedical Science
It is such an honour to be able to be a part of the committee organising the ISBS Symposium 2018. One of the most interesting things about the IMU Society of Biomedical Science is the broad diversity of its brain power. We have brilliant faculty and a vibrant mix of aspiring students who will be future biomedical scientists. As illnesses and treatments become more sophisticated, more advanced understanding of the human body is needed. Biomedical sciences with its key disciplines, provides a thorough foundation in medical diagnosis covering Haematology, Biochemistry, Microbiology, Histopathology, Cytology and Molecular biology. ISBS Symposium 2018 has definitely given me much exposure in spreading awareness regarding the importance of Molecular Diagnostics especially through management of the Facebook page for ISBS Symposium 2018 and also managing the official email for the Symposium. I hope to be able to be a part of the organising committee again for future symposiums like this.

Written by: Quek Xin Fei, Genieve Yeo, Su Zhi Yi, Akhila Eswaran, Jaithra Ramachandran, and Aishah Amirah Photo credits to Tan Hui Ying and Genieve Yeo Related article: Four IMU Biomedical Science Students Share Experience at a Symposium

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