My Time on College Council... With Miss Anna Paisley

My Time on College Council... With Miss Anna Paisley

The College is currently seeking nominations for one vacancy which will arise on Council at the AGM in November 2022. Council Member and Consultant General and Upper GI Surgeon Miss Anna Paisley shares her thoughts on what it means to be a Council Member.

Like a lot of people of my era, my first real contact with the College was when I embarked on examinations and courses to progress in my surgical career as an early-years trainee. Whilst exams are undoubtedly daunting, I was struck then by the friendly welcome and guidance offered by the College Members and staff in those early days of my surgical journey. Excellent outreach by the affiliate networks have now, of course, opened this support and guidance on a surgical future to students, foundation and pre-MRCS doctors.

This sense of inclusive encouragement led me to increase my involvement in College activities whilst a trainee in South-East Scotland. My developing interest in surgical training was stimulated by the opportunity to be Trainee Representative on College bodies such as the Education, Examination Training Board, the Scottish Intercollegiate Board for Standards in Training, the Specialty Advisory (now Specialty) Board in General Surgery, and, from its inception in 2002, what would become the Trainee Committee.

Embarking on my Consultant career in 2007 I was keen to increase my contribution, having been impressed by what the College had to offer whilst I was a trainee. As a Regional Surgical Advisor for South-East Scotland from 2009-15, I was able to see the breadth of activity the College undertakes to support the membership, and I tried to further the welcoming, friendly and inclusive reputation of the College at events such as the highly popular medical school careers fairs.

My time as an RSA cemented for me the fundamental support the College provides for its membership. I was able to support the College’s educational portfolio when asked to be year one director for The Edinburgh Surgery Online MSc in Surgical Sciences, a highly successful partnership with the University of Edinburgh; a role I continue to relish. The Faculty of Surgical Trainers, to whose fellowship I was elected in 2015, exemplifies the College’s central role in training standards.

It was a huge honour to be elected by the membership to College Council in 2015. In this time, I have enjoyed the opportunity to help further the College’s values, with its Members and the safety of their patients at its core, whilst helping ensure that the institution maintains its hospitable and inclusive outlook. In addition to teaching, training and committee roles, I have chaired the Website Development Group, Global Surgery Foundation and the Patient Safety Group, the latter building on my long-term interest and continuing the College’s established and pioneering work. The assistance, collaboration and friendship of numerous colleagues and staff have helped greatly in meeting these responsibilities. It is hard work, but immeasurably rewarding to be involved in shaping surgical policy.

The College has been, and will continue to be, central to my surgical career and has a pivotal role in the future of surgical care. Remembering those early days of exams and first joining the College family, it is always a particular pleasure to welcome new Members, Fellows and their families at Diploma Ceremonies. Hopefully in this way they can begin as fulfilling a journey with the College as I continue to enjoy.

The deadline for Council nominations is 5pm on 20 May 2022. Visit our website for further information.

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