RCS Research Fellowship Scheme: celebrating 25 years
29 Nov 2018
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the RCS Research Fellowship Scheme.
Since its inception in 1993, the scheme has awarded 738 fellowships worth more than £40 million.
The milestone was celebrated on Tuesday night with a dinner attended by a small number of current and past research fellows, surgeons who have helped to advance the scheme through donations, assessment and support, and several generous benefactors who have remained loyal to the scheme throughout its history.
A series of short talks gave a glimpse into what has been achieved so far.
The research fellows spoke of the advances they have made in areas such as transplantation, cancer treatment, military surgery and 3D bioprinting of human cartilage.
RCS President Professor Derek Alderson said: ‘Research is the area of activity that we as a college prize more than anything else in order to improve outcomes for our patients, and it will always be so.’
Surgeon Commander, Catherine Powell, described her research fellowship as a springboard that changed the course of her career.
She said: ‘I cannot thank you enough for introducing me to the world of research and the doors that it opens.’
Professor Alderson told the donors and supporters in attendance: ‘Without your support, the scheme would not be flourishing in the way it currently does.’
'I hope that in 25 years’ time people are meeting here once again and I hope that we continue to progress and to develop surgery and that research will remain the jewel in this college’s crown.’
The Research Fellowship Scheme was created in response to major changes in research techniques, which caused concern about the viability of research away from a university or clinical environment.
Each fellowship enables a full-time surgical trainee to undertake a research programme lasting one to three years, usually supervised in a UK department of surgery or university.
Those awarded a research fellowship benefit from the addition of a solid academic element to their clinical training, which broadens their knowledge and experience.