The Women in Medicine in Ireland Network (WiMIN) entered 2023 with renewed enthusiasm and ambition, following its first formal AGM in December 2022. As a very young organisation which was founded in 2018, we are delighted to be going from strength to strength and increasing our membership numbers all the time. We have close to 750 subscribers and aim to reach out to as many female doctors and medical students in Ireland as we can.
Our first event of 2023 was our International Women’s Day Zoom chat, which was an informal networking opportunity for our members. We were proud to screen the wonderful video created by our committee member and filmmaker Captain Dr. Lisa McNamee, which was filmed at our annual conference in October 2022. The film was inspired by Dr. Suzanne Koven’s excellent book, “Letter to a Young Female Physician”, and includes the words of wisdom which our members would give to their younger selves. The Zoom chat afterwards gave our younger members the opportunity to ask more senior colleagues for their advice on moving to the next stage of their careers, and there was plenty of discussion about Imposter Syndrome and the art of both saying yes to opportunities and saying no!
Our founder, Dr. Sarah Fitzgibbon, also participated in some other events during International Women’s Week, including a panel discussion run by the Feminist Society, Association of Medical Students of Ireland, and the ObGyn Society at University College, Cork.
Dr. Fitzgibbon was also very proud to be named as one of the Irish Examiner’s Top 100 Women of 2023 for her work highlighting gender inequity in medicine. Some of our international graduate members were interviewed for a piece in the same publication, highlighting their wonderful contributions to healthcare in Ireland.
Throughout the month of February, our social media campaign #BrigidsCross used the symbolism of our female patron saint (and pagan goddess) Brigid to highlight research, data and personal stories of gender inequity both in medicine and in society at large. Each day we posted on a different issue, including the gender pay gap, institutional bias, personal stories of harassment and discrimination, and the glass ceiling.Our next WiMIN event will be an interactive online workshop for our junior colleagues, with advice and support from an executive coach as well as representatives from the major training institutions. We know from feedback from our members that they can feel unsure as to the steps involved in applying for training schemes. They are also uncertain about interview and CV preparation. We are sure this will be a very useful workshop for all those who are climbing the career ladder.
We are continuing our very successful #SundayWiMIN tributes, which recognise the achievements of a different female medic, past or present, each week. They can be viewed on our website at www.wimin.ie/SundayWiMIN.