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Endocrinologist 151 Cover
Issue 151 Spring 2024

Endocrinologist > Spring 2024 > Features


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When Ruth Andrew, our General Secretary, was asked to give an after-dinner speech on the value of Bioscientifica’s support in developing endocrinology, minor panic led her to adapt a family pastime of rewriting lyrics to popular songs. We hope you enjoy the resulting poem…


When I was young and not yet a doc, to BES I’d go

My travel grant, my Top Shop suit, my premade slides to show

I’d stand beside my poster board and scan for my mistakes

I used to bring a felt tip pen to fix them just in case

Will people come or maybe not, I’ll just chat to my neighbour?

Was that the judge, what did they think, will votes go in my favour?

And at the end I would be whacked, a little too much wine

But what a buzz to get to go, a truly special time


With travel grants, my twenties passed with meetings in the States

I’d never seen so many folk … including global greats

The poster hall was full of noise and questions every June

I’d scan a badge and clock a name … professionally swoon

You worked the room to win the prize, a US post-doc role

Evans, Vale and Mangelsdorf … a big lab was the goal

You would return to UK shores, but with a broader vision

A network built that lasts for aye, a life-changing decision


Time went by and I matured, I now was wearing Hobbs

I’d built enough track record to secure a tenured job

But still to BES I went, but this time with my student

Their travel grant a welcome help … us Scots are very prudent

I can’t express the surge of nerves to watch them first present

I’m proud, I’m scared, but never must their confidence I dent

The lucky ones, the prize event – they’d practised day and night

A question asked – what will they say? – a phew they got it right


My team have gained so greatly from our grants portfolio

They rush into my office with their faces all aglow

They’d won a research training grant to learn a vital skill

And with that, aspirations for their paper we’d fulfil

Career-defining moments when you need to show potential

A research grant is just the biz for data influential

At workshops which are subsidised, perspective wide they gain

And all-important friendships which throughout careers sustain


So over time I’ve sat on all Committees one by one

I always feel I’ve done some good while also having fun

Decisions, under Ian’s eye, are taken with great care

And David always close on hand to stop financial scare

Resource to help the young progress should not be underplayed

And SfE is vital here with fiscal money frayed

I feel to be the General Sec makes me a lucky fella

I’m proud of all that they achieve, and now I wear Viyella!

Photos of Ruth Andrew at various stages of her career.

Ruth at various stages of her career. L-R: Ruth at ENDO 2008, Ruth with George Just playing ukelele at a team-building event. Ruth receiving an award for 25 years of service to University of Edinburgh in 2019 from Peter Mathieson



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