BHF CoRE Vascular Biomedicine Summer School

Published: 16 November 2018

Glasgow BHF CoRE held its first Vascular Biomedicine Summer School at SCMH in July 2018. It is safe to say it was a huge success

This past July, our SCMH - BHF Centre of Research Excellence hosted a Vascular Biomedicine Summer School. The week was filled with outstanding lectures and hands-on practice courses covering clinical and non-clinical aspects of vascular research, from molecular biology to vascular medicine. We welcomed over 40 students, including PhD students and post-docs from Canada, France, Belgium, The Netherlands and the UK.

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Our guests, including students from the Canadian Vascular Network, had the opportunity to meet world-renowned leaders in the field of vascular biology. They explored a wide variety of topics including vascular cell biology, genetics, hypertension, vascular imaging, small vessels and so much more. One guest found the quality of the lectures and speakers to be “truly amazing” with another stating they “enjoyed the diversity of the talks and scientists” which allowed them to think about other potential project ideas.


Furthermore, our experts in myography, in vitro and in vivo phenotyping and clinical research and imaging carefully planned all the afternoon sessions, which was highly regarded by all. Students found observing practical techniques in the labs very beneficial and enjoyed visiting the QEUH.

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The Summer School committee planned a variety of activities throughout the week to allow our guests to socialise and have some fun. The hard work that went into organising this clearly paid off as one student exclaimed that this was the “social programme that everybody dreamed about” and another said it was “just as excellent as the scientific programme”. The week started off with a lesson in how to make tapas at Tennents Training Academy. The students were given the chance to show off their bowling skills and during the week they enjoyed a fun quiz and dinner at The Lighthouse. 

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 Everyone then said their goodbyes during their last meal of the summer school at the Hilton Glasgow Grosvenor. Students who stayed in Glasgow on the Friday night went to the Escape rooms where their problem-solving skills were put to the test as they were locked up together in a mysterious room and had 60 minutes to escape!


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We were privileged to have Professor Victor Dzau join us and a talk with our visiting students. Professor Dzau is President of the National Academy of Medicine and one of the most influential physician scientists and leaders in medicine worldwide. He has been at the forefront driving the field of Precision Medicine and holds an honorary degree from the University of Glasgow and Chairs the External Scientific Advisory Board of the School of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Health.

Having Professor Dzau deliver his talk on ‘My career- personal reflections’at the meal made the evening extra special and we felt incredibly lucky to welcome him as our guest of honour. Many guests said that this was their favourite event with one student saying “it was an honour to hear Professor Victor Dzau’s talk”. His presentation inspired many of the attendees as he shared his experiences of navigating his pathway to success as a scientist and mentor. It was a special night, as Prof Dzau spent time with every single student, getting to know each one of them.

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In conclusion, we can confidently say that we had a successful summer school. We received positive and useful feedback from students who said it was enjoyable, interesting and was a great learning and networking experience. We would like to thank the fantastic speakers for their contribution which helped make our very first summer school so successful. It is safe to say that your talks inspired a new generation of future vascular biology scientists who left Glasgow with greater understanding of different topics and brilliant memories. Thank you to the BHF CoRE Summer School committee and personnel for all your efforts in helping create an inclusive, fulfilling and entertaining programme. Of course, we would like to send our warm wishes and thank you to the students who came to the summer school from all over the world. We thoroughly enjoyed having you at the School and hope you had a great time experiencing everything that Glasgow has to offer.

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First published: 16 November 2018

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