Outlook: A Quarterly Newsletter of the Society of Behavorial Medicine
Fall 2009 Return to Outlook Main page »

Education, Training and Career DevelopmentOverview of Education, Training and Career Development Activities

Barbara Stetson, PhD, Education, Training and Career Development Council Member

Have you heard about SBM's initiative to help members navigate their career development? As a Society focused on the needs of its members, SBM recognizes that education and training needs vary over the course of one's career. Many SBM members have carved out interesting and unique careers. For many, careers have evolved over time with varied pathways; taking turns through research, clinical work, administration and even public advocacy. As an interdisciplinary and rapidly developing field, changing roles and goals during a career may become the norm for those of us working in Behavioral Medicine. SBM aims to provide support and resources for Behavioral Medicine education and training - spanning careers across the continuum from trainee to senior levels and including careers that may follow varied paths rather than what might be thought of as a traditional ladder.

SBM has many existing resources for members -across the career span. For a quick overview: The Education, Training and Career Development Council (ETCD) has coordinated a number of activities at the Annual SBM meeting, including the availability of Expert Consultation Service, opportunities to have dinner and discussion with Experts and Annual Meeting Programs related to Education, Training and Career Development. Recent popular programs included a Roundtable on Clinical Work in Behavioral Medicine Careers and Panels on Improving Negotiation Skills in Behavioral Medicine Careers, Achieving a Healthy Work/Life Balance and Graduate Research. SBM Members may access a number of useful educational resources via the SBM Web site (www.sbm.org). By clicking the link to the Education, Training Council and Career Development, members may both access and post course syllabi. Current syllabi content in this library covers interdisciplinary undergraduate and graduate courses related to behavioral medicine. Valuable training resources related to Evidence Based Behavioral Medicine are also available from the SBM Web site by linking to the Evidence Based Behavioral Practice (EBBP) Project. Resources for EBBP registrants include on-line training in conducting EBBP process with clients and communities, choosing and using EBBP tools, conducting systematic reviews and teaching resources and syllabi.

A new, special SBM Working Group on Career Trajectories in Behavioral Medicine has also been formed to further the career development outreach efforts of SBM. This group is focusing on identifying key career trajectories that are likely to be part of behavioral medicine's future, identifying the key transition points, and pinpointing specific strategies that SBM could use to prepare and support members to gain knowledge and skills to pursue career goals. Some of the challenges that have been identified include learning and integrating new technology and biobehavioral advances into career development, and learning and mastering new outreach skills such as public education and advocacy. We encourage you to contact us with your ideas on how SBM can better meet your career development needs. Please e-mail SBM President Dr. Francis J. Keefe (keefe003@mc.duke.edu) with your suggestions and recommendations. These emails will be forwarded to the Working Group for their consideration.

Look for the upcoming Annual Meeting in Seattle to address cutting edge Education Training and Career Development issues through special symposia and presentations.