National societies: A key role in recruiting future urology leaders

Wed, 21 Oct 2015 • Joel Vega

National societies across Europe play a crucial role in recruiting young promising talents to enable the European Association of Urology (EAU) to mentor and prepare them for future leadership roles not only in scientific and clinical research but also in the EAU’s various activities.

“The next generation should have the opportunities to get involved and be actively engaged in our activities. National societies have a significant role in the development of young urologists and the EAU is committed to help, nurture and develop promising talents. We have to work together in preparing young urologists to become future leaders,” said EAU Sec. General Prof. Chris Chapple.

Chapple threw the challenge during the National Societies Meeting held recently in Noordwijk, The Netherlands, a joint consultative meeting annually organised by the EAU to examine prospects and challenges in European urology. Among the issues discussed during the annual meeting were education, training, recruitment and facilitating communication links among European urology associations, their partners and the EAU.

In outlining the EAU strategy to boost recruitment for future urology leaders, Chapple said the EAU Leadership Programme has been created to pinpoint areas wherein the National Societies can assume an active role.

“We need the input from the National Societies on how to form a dynamic link with young potential leaders,” said Chapple as he underscored the importance of young urologists to come forward and actively contribute by sharing their expertise and knowledge.

In the frontline of EAU recruitment are the EAU Section Offices where urologists can join their peers and colleagues in specialised areas of urology. Led by Prof. Luis Martínez-Piñeiro as chairman, the EAU Section Office is composed of 12 sections covering the major fields of urology such as uro-oncology, andrology, functional urology, uro-technology and reconstructive urology, among others.

Chapple underscored the need to offer young urologists early exposure, access to information and mentorship for them to become future opinion leaders. He also reiterated that the EAU has in place various programmes that aim to boost education and career development such as the European Urological Scholarship Programme (EUSP) which offers several forms of scholarships, academic training and fellowships.

The European School of Urology (ESU) is also one of the EAU’s main conduits to boost educational goals. The ESU offers a wide variety of courses, masterclasses and specialised skills training backed up by an international faculty who are leading experts in their field.

Although these long-term strategies are in place what is crucial, according to Chapple, are the efficient and productive links between the EAU and the national societies as he emphasised the point that communication, partnership and teamwork are essential.

“We want to represent urology in Europe, with -and through- national societies. Collaboration is essential for our field as funding diminishes,” he added.