Every year, the scientific and professional organization: The American Association of Physicists in Medicine travels around North America for their annual meeting. This year, in 2017, the Association came to Denver, Colorado for their meeting from July 30, through Aug 3. A new component in their annual meeting is incorporating “Med Phys Wiz Kidz Program” and introducing 16 select few children from around the US to attend AAPM’s new program. Excitingly, Denver had the privilege to host AAPM’s first successful attempt at this program this year.
The 16 Med Phys Wiz Kidz children were offered an opportunity to gain practical knowledge on emerging technical and professional issues from the female physicists who have a lot of pride in their job. They want their knowledge to be passed down so that maybe the children that they introduced to medical physics will carry on what they do: save lives every day that they cure patients with cancer and who are in the hospital. “Medical Physicists care about saving lives.” Julianne Pollard-Larkin proudly stated about their critical jobs that impact so many lives.
The Medical Physicists wanted to show the Wiz Kidz what machines they use every day so the Wiz Kidz toured a level of the Colorado Convention Center at which the annual meeting was held and saw the models and life size samples of what the physicists do every day. Booths were stationed in rows that the Wiz Kidz walked curiously down together. The booth displayers explained Computed Tomography (CT) scans and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans to the 16 children.
All the female physicists came from many different backgrounds, some dreamed of being medical physicists since they were children, some found their inspirational careers through a summer job, but all of them had to fight for where they are, all of them had to work hard for where they are, and that is the most important part of information that they passed down and taught the select few children and tell everyone child and adult in and outside of the Convention Center at that time: “Whatever you want to do, go do it.” Miriam Lambert, MS triumphantly said to the 16 kids. “Remember, the sky’s the limit.” Pollard-Larkin said encouragingly as the Wiz Kidz took in everything that the medical physicists had given them and all of the opportunities they now have.