We are in the throes of preparing to train the next group of ‘heart health warriors’ at the annual WomenHeart Science & Leadership Symposium (S&L) at Mayo Clinic on Oct. 5-8. In partnership with The Mayo Women’s Heart Clinic, we will be training 50 new WomenHeart Champions, and bringing back a number of trained Champions to welcome, embrace, mentor, coach, and support the new class. We will also be celebrating the 20thanniversary of The Mayo Clinic Women’s Heart Clinic, which was founded in Nov. 1998. We are excited to help Sharonne Hayes, M.D. and her Mayo colleagues celebrate this milestone!
Preparation for S&L reminds me that it’s marching band season across the United States. High schools with competitive bands start training over the summer for the fall football game shows and regional and national competitions. My daughter played mellophone—marching French horn—in her high school marching band, and I was astounded by the quality of the training, which started over the summer and extended until the end of football season. The students learned complex standing and marching formations, how to improve the musicality and drama of the performances, polishing their instruments, the importance of staying hydrated, and, perhaps most importantly, the power of teamwork. Parents were part of the team—volunteering to drive, cook, repair uniforms, chaperone, braid hair, comfort, cajole, and raise money.
The incoming class of new WomenHeart Champions will undoubtedly end their four days together feeling the power of their training and the love and support of the teamwork that brought them all together. The buzz in our office, at Mayo, and out in the field is all about making this year’s training a smash hit. We are driven to continue to increase the number of trained women with heart disease who can help save the lives of other women.
This experience brings out the best in teamwork among all of the staff and volunteer leaders, and we are marching to the tune of our medical director, Dr. Sharonne Hayes, without whom we would be individual performers rather than a marching band or a group of heart health warriors. Bravo to the Mayo Women’s Heart Clinic team, WomenHeart staff, and the array of volunteer Champions who, on Oct. 5, will all come together to train a powerful group of heart health warriors. And, many thanks to the corporate sponsors who help make this training possible. I am proud to be on this team that will be performing together soon!