ASHG recently held its 2023 Annual Meeting November 1 – 5 in Washington, DC. As a part of the programs offered, ASHG’s Shared Interest Groups (SIGs) held in-person meetups. The Shared Interest Groups were specifically created by ASHG’s Membership Engagement Committee (MEC) to provide a space for members who are interested in similar topics to collaborate, connect, and communicate. ASHG currently offers three SIGs, Bioinformatics and Computational Methods, Phenotypes & Genotypes, and Emerging Laboratory Technologies.
Each SIG held its own meetup on three separate mornings of the Annual Meeting and boasted almost 250 people in attendance between them. The purpose of these meetups was to provide a place where members could connect and discuss their similar interests or work projects related to the overall SIG topics. Each SIG meetup began with a brief note from the SIG’s leader (Minna Kaikkonen, PhD, Augusto Rojas-Martinez, MD/PhD, and Paul Hook, PhD) highlighting why the SIGs were created and encouraging everyone in attendance to network and collaborate for the remainder of the session.
From the moment the meetups began, the room was abuzz with conversations and connections being formed. Bioinformatics and Computational Methods SIG leader, Paul Hook, PhD noted “The SIG meetups at ASHG 2023 were a great success! There seemed to be a myriad of conversations happening at each table, ranging from people sharing what they were presenting at the meeting to troubleshooting specific analyses and experiments. Happily, I was even told that these meetups sparked multiple collaborations that will continue after the meeting!”
These SIG meetups have grown considerably from last year when they were first offered and ASHG is looking forward to the future of the SIGs and continuing that growth. Be sure to look out for information about next year’s SIG meetups and join us at the ASHG 2024 Annual Meeting November 5 – 9 in Denver, Colorado.