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CCSP retreat in the run-up to Christmas

On Thursday, November 30, 2023, one of the regular retreats of the Cologne Clinician Scientist Program (CCSP), a funding program of the Faculty of Medicine for physicians working in research, took place at Anno 1858 am Heumarkt. These meetings of the CCSP are aimed at its program participants and primarily serve the continuous exchange of clinician scientists with each other.


The most recent event took place in the very festively decorated conference room of the Malzmühle brewery on Cologne's Heumarkt. In addition to the current program participants, the CCSP graduates (alumni) and the fellows of the continuing Advanced Clinician Scientist Program (adCCSP) were also invited.

The program director, Prof. Dr. Esther von Stebut-Borschitz, opened the retreat with a brief review of the previous structure, success and popularity of the funding program. This was followed by Dr. Alexander Lehmann, who presented the funding landscape of the Else-Kröner-Fresenius Foundation. Future funding options for her research met with lively interest from the participants.

A brief coffee break was followed by a presentation by Prof. Dr. Juliane Walz from the University Hospital of Tübingen. She discussed her very personal career path as a young and successful clinician scientist with a focus on balancing career and family. A thoroughly exciting and inspiring lecture. Prof. Dr. Thomas Benzing followed on from this with his presentation, combining scientific findings on nephrological processes in the body, fun facts about beer and important decisions in his own life and career.

This was followed by a small workshop on "Better networking" with words of welcome from Prof. Dr. Elke Kalbe.

The second half of the retreat consisted of short presentations on scientific findings from the projects of some CCSP Fellows, Dr. Antonia Howaldt, Dr. David Zopfs, Dr. Alexander Rokohl and Dr. Jan Petry-Schmelzer. In addition, Dr. Anna Sauerbier, participant of the adCCSP, presented her current state of research. With candlelight and a view of the illuminated Christmas market, Marius Penzel and Marie Eickhoff from Medwatch (Medwatch is committed to evidence-based medical journalism), peppered with a lot of humor, revealed the manipulations and tricks of a well-known dietary supplement manufacturer.

Looking back, this retreat at the end of the year gave us some stimulating impressions and particularly wonderful inspiration. We look forward to the next meeting!

CCSP retreat in an unusual atmosphere

On March 22, 2023, the annual retreat of the Cologne Clinician Scientist Program took place live in person for the first time. The Cologne Clinician Scientist Program (CCSP) supports young physicians interested in research - so-called clinician scientists - on the one hand financially by providing participants with so-called "protected" research time, and on the other hand the program supports professional development and exchange within the network of clinician scientists. Due to coronavirus, the latter has mainly been carried out online in recent years.


The CCSP program participants as well as the medical director (Univ.-Prof. Dr. Esther von Stebut-Borschitz) and the coordinator (Corinna Wassermann) were all the more pleased about this year's CCSP retreat taking place in presence. A special location was chosen for this event - a meeting room at Cologne Zoo. The event offered a good platform for discussion and food for thought with its varied presentations, consisting of reports on the research progress of individual program participants and a very informative guest contribution by Dr. Laura Stappert from the DFG on the DFG's current funding landscape for clinician scientists. A workshop on the important topic of "time management" led by personnel consultant Jörg Busenbender encouraged a lively and animated exchange on the major everyday problem of how to optimize one's time for science, clinical work, leisure and family. The entire program was accompanied by animal noises from Cologne Zoo (the petting zoo was right next door), which sometimes led to great amusement. To round off the evening, there was an entertaining science slam on biomedical topics.

Conclusion of the exciting day: This year's CCSP retreat was a complete success and will take place regularly in the future.