by Jey Koehler, DVM, PhD, DACVP
In early December, Drs. Jey Koehler, Linden Craig, and Patty Pesavento took the Descriptive Veterinary Pathology course on the road down to beautiful Belo Horizonte in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais. 131 participants from every state in Brazil were in attendance, representing a full spectrum of veterinary students, residents, graduate students, and practicing pathologists in both diagnostic laboratories and academia, as well as one canine attendee who struggled to stay awake during some of the lectures:
The attendees were some of the warmest, friendliest, and most appreciative we have ever encountered. It really reinforced the value of an in-person meeting, and the local organizers made sure we all gained at least five pounds by having break tables loaded up with local coffee, desserts, and of course trays full of diabolically delicious paõ de queijo!
During the lectures, there was a lot of great audience participation, and during the breaks there was vibrant discussion about topics ranging from US residency programs to local culture to collaborative research projects and so much more. We truly feel as if we’ve made some life-long friends that we hope to stay in touch with. This kind of interaction just isn’t possible with virtual meetings, and the connections made have immeasurable benefits both personal and professional for everyone involved! On Wednesday afternoon Dr. Ricardo Evandro Mendes (Professor en Instituto Federal Catarinense) delighted the audience with a series of interesting cases of diseases of cattle. The videos of antemortem clinical presentation and necropsy lesions were a huge hit (check out his Instagram @patologiaifc!)
The phenomenal translators, Larissa Benevides and Leo Alenquer, provided simultaneous translation into Portuguese through headsets all day long, and without their extensive medical translation experience and stamina the course would not have been possible. Special acknowledgment and thanks go out to local organizers Drs. Renato Lima dos Santos (currently in California) and Drs. Felipe Pierezan, Beatriz Novaes, and Carlos Eduardo Lopes for their generosity and kindness as local hosts, and to all the student and faculty volunteers at UFMG who worked on all the logistics make things run smoothly. Great thanks also go to the generous financial contributions of the Associação Brasileira de Patologia Veterinária and especially scientific director Dr. Francisco Leite in support of translation services. Nós amamos o Brasil, and we can’t wait to get back!