Some of the WMS 2023 fellowship recipients in action at the 2023 Congress

Meeting the costs of international travel, accommodation and Congress registration can be tough, particularly for our younger members and those in the early stages of their careers.

Ahead of WMS 2023 in Charleston, South Carolina, the WMS Executive Board agreed to extend the fellowship packages to support more people with the cost of in-person attendance. The WMS agreed to fund up to 100 fellowships of up to £2,000 each to help cover the cost of registration, travel and accommodation.

The fellowship categories were also extended to include first-time in-person WMS Congress attendees, early career researchers and clinicians and WMS members for whom the costs were a barrier to in-person attendance. Additional fellowships were also provided for senior myologists who have been active in WMS in the past but are now retired and have constraints on their available funds.

We were able to award 79 fellowships for WMS 2023.

Fellowships in 2024

For WMS 2024, we want to make sure that everyone who would like to attend the Congress and would benefit from a fellowship has the opportunity to apply. Ideally, we will award all 100 of our available fellowships.

All applicants must be current WMS members (during the registration process, at the time of abstract submission and during the Congress dates) and provide a paragraph (100 words maximum) to explain how the WMS fellowship and attending the WMS Congress this year would benefit and develop their career in the field of neuromuscular disorders and engage with the broader WMS community.

Beneficiary stories

To help WMS members consider how they might benefit from a fellowship, we have brought together some of the quotes from our 2023 fellowship recipients:

Christine Nørrind Lando, a medical student at the Rigshospitalet Neurologisk Klinik in Copenhagen said:

“As a medical student entering the world of research, the opportunity to attend this large international conference was an invaluable experience only made possible by the fellowship I received.

“At the Congress, I had the chance to network with experts and peers, improving both connections and knowledge within the highly specialised field. It was a great learning experience being a first-time presenter. Talking about my own research through a poster presentation and listening to the many presentations at the Congress has taught me a lot about how to convey research and have confidence sharing my work.

“A standout aspect for me was the Congress’s diverse range of topics that included highly specialised genetic and molecular research, interesting explorations of social aspects in research and an entirely different talk by the NASA astronaut. This variety was very engaging and expanded my understanding of the multidisciplinary nature of both the neuromuscular field and research. This will definitely leave a lasting impact on my career in medicine and research.”

Youngho Kim, from the Kyungpook National University Hospital in Daegu, South Korea said:

“I had the great opportunity of attending WMS 2023. It was inspiring to see experts and researchers from across the globe come together to share their findings and ideas. One of the most notable aspects of the Congress was the diversity of presentations. From basic science to clinical applications, I gained a holistic understanding of muscle-related disorders and the ongoing research efforts for their treatment.

“In conclusion, the WMS fellowship and my experience at WMS 2023 in Charleston has been transformative. I am deeply grateful for this opportunity, which has enriched my professional life and empowered me to make a significant impact in the field of muscle research. I look forward to the exciting journey ahead as I continue to learn, collaborate, and innovate with the support of the WMS community.

“Thank you, WMS, for this incredible experience. I am excited to be a part of the future of muscle research.”

And Tiberiu Stan, a researcher in the DND Genetic Therapy Group at the LUMC in Leiden, Netherlands, said:

“I was very excited when two of my submitted abstracts were accepted for poster presentations at the WMS 2023 meeting.

“When I arrived, after a long, overseas flight, the registration venue was already well prepared to receive guests and had shuttle busses ready to transport attendees between the hotel and Congress venue, or, later on, between the Congress and downtown Charleston.

“We also learned from the WMS President, Prof. Volker Straub, at the Opening Ceremony, that there were more than 1,000 in-person attendees at the meeting and more than 200 virtual registrations, 48 countries were represented, and more than 300 posters were submitted.

“We were told there were 79 fellowships awarded (I am very grateful that I have been awarded one of them). There were also new additions for the WMS 2023 meeting: new sessions – Career Development Workshop, Headshot Sessions, Interesting Cases Discussion, New Members’ Event, Debate Session and the Myology Café. I have participated and enjoyed them all.

“I enjoyed many presentations and talks, and the app enabled us to plan ahead and ask questions live. In particular, I enjoyed the talk, “Dystrophin in Muscular Dystrophy” and the debate “Is the muscle biopsy still indicated?”

“It was great to interact with different companies’ representatives as well with the posters and short-oral presenters.

“There was also allocated time to explore the Charleston downtown area and to understand and learn from Charleston's history at the International African American Museum.

“We also celebrated at the dinner party in Downton Charleston. On the final day of the Congress, I discovered I had received the runners-up prize for one of the posters I submitted.

“Thank you very much for the nice and warm welcome in Charleston, for the trust in awarding me the travel fellowship and the poster runners-up award!”

Apply now for WMS 2024

Any WMS member thinking of registering for WMS 2024 can find out more about our fellowships offer on the fellowships page of our website.

Published on 3 April 2024.


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22 Apr 2024 A round-up of our March Myology Café

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