Today was fantastic! But I jump ahead.

I was a bit bummed that I didn’t feel too engaged with a couple of the posters I saw yesterday. I did however enjoy the presidential lecture last night. Dr. Sudhof stressed the importance of emphasizing the complexity of the brain and indeed neuropsychiatric disorders if we are going to have any sway with the public perception of not only the disease, but also why little segway had been made on understanding the disorders. He also gave an uplifting statement, genetic understanding must be linked with function and its implications in order to even begin to understand how psychiatric disorders can be understood. Needless to say, it was a great talk!

On day 3, I went to a bunch of posters that I thoroughly enjoyed, summaries of which I tweeted about – check them out on my feed. I would write about them, however, I want to write a little reflection on something profound I learnt yesterday.

I went to a reception last night and one thing led to another in which I implemented advice a neuroscientist had given me the day before: “Ignore your shyness and get in people’s faces – you have to introduce yourself.” I did just that. I introduced myself to not just 1 but 3 scientists that I thought to myself: “It would be great to get to know these people.” I have to say, all it took was a few sentences and next thing you know, I am getting insights about an outreach program I have been trying to have ironed out, and I got encouraged to keep self-promoting. I finally realized that SfN is not just about the science, it is also about the people who do the science. I have to say this is my 5th time attending SfN, and this is the year that I have garnered the most information in terms of social capital. I have learnt that you need to find and make the connections that will not only help you stand out but will also help you push your science far! I’ve always thought, particularly when listening to talks on getting mentorship, that this was some kind of elusive advice that would never be applicable, however, I have been proven wrong. Not only is it paramount for guidance, but it also is necessary for advancement. I am definitely excited about some of the connections I’ve made and look forward to pursuing them.

Last word, shout out to whoever the awesome scientists are that sponsored the turnt up social that happened at Reggies last night! I don’t think I’ve been at such an awesome dance party since I was… maybe 23… and believe me, 23 was a few years ago!

I have recovered and ready to finish SfN with a bang! Whooohoooo day #4  – let’s do this!

P.S., if you’ll still be here tomorrow afternoon, come check out my poster – R7, Wednesday afternoon session 1-5 p.m.