I was delighted to be elected co-Chair of the ECTS Academy, and would like to thank my fellow members for their support. The previous and current Chairs have worked tirelessly since 2015 to develop the Academy’s infrastructure. It now has a well-established programme of activities within the annual ECTS Conference, aimed primarily at educating and promoting early career investigators. Academy members make a valuable contribution to all the Society’s committees and working groups, also playing a key role in the PhD training course. Across the year, members organise and host regular webinars and group and individual mentoring sessions. The members’ activities including the annual retreat also foster the development of strong scientific networks, which have in turn underpinned a number of successful research studies and grant applications.
In my period of service as Chair I would like to build on my predecessors’ work by providing further opportunities for development of scientific collaboration both within the Academy and with the broader Society membership. This can be completed through themed online discussions targeting particular areas of research interest. In addition, to promote wider uptake of the support and development opportunities offered by the Academy. The last few years have seen the academic job market become even more competitive, and it is imperative that those of us who have recently negotiated the process offer our experiences (good and bad!) and advice to support our junior colleagues. A healthy bone research field benefits us all, as novel tools and insights provide new opportunities and fields for discovery.
Applications for the next Academy intake in 2023 are now open until 31 October, and I hope that those of you who are eligible will consider putting yourself for membership. The Academy offers a fantastic development opportunity, allowing you to build a new social and scientific network of fellow early career researchers. In addition, to develop your leadership experience by contributing to the development opportunities offered by the Academy across the academic year. Academy membership will allow you additional routes to contribute to the Society and the wider field, and I look forward to welcoming the new members in person in Liverpool next April.
Alex is a Reader in Musculoskeletal Physiology at Manchester Metropolitan University, and has been an Academy member since 2019.