With the final webinar held on June 30, SOT has concluded its 2020 Virtual Meeting sessions, marking a successful—if unanticipated—scientific program. This meeting was the result of much hard work on the part of the SOT leadership and member volunteers. Thank you to those who offered their time and expertise to conduct and contribute to the virtual Scientific Sessions and Continuing Education (CE) courses, as well as to those who supported the Society by participating in these events.
As you know, the 2020 Virtual Meeting spanned several months, with webinars offered most weeks from March through June. During this time, breakthrough toxicology research was delivered through 27 Scientific Session webinars, which were very well received by participants. All told, 5,570 attendees participated in the virtual Scientific Sessions, with attendance averaging 206 participants per event.
Additionally, 13 of the 14 CE courses originally planned for the in-person meeting were converted to live online courses, with an average attendance of 70 per course and the highest-attended course reaching about 200 participants. All the virtual CE courses were recorded and will be added to CEd-Tox, the online SOT CE library. Anyone interested may register for these courses and download the corresponding material at any time. The CE Committee would like to thank the course presenters and Chairs for their enthusiasm and flexibility in scheduling and hosting their courses virtually these past few months!
The Virtual Meeting also provided opportunities for undergraduate students to make connections with leaders in the field through the Virtual Undergraduate Education Program, which included introductory toxicology webinars by SOT members and research presentations from Pfizer SOT Undergraduate Student Travel Award recipients.
A much-anticipated component of the Annual Meeting, the ToxExpo also transitioned to a virtual format, featuring a dozen virtual exhibitors offering the latest in toxicology tools and solutions. Additionally, several recordings of Exhibitor-Hosted Sessions were produced to deliver specialized educational opportunities to the toxicology community. Be sure to visit the Virtual ToxExpo to find products and services that meet your needs and to expand your knowledge on important subject areas in toxicology.
SOT leadership was pleased to introduce SOT TV as part of this year’s virtual program. SOT TV launched in March with prerecorded paid features that showcased an inside look at the breadth of toxicology-related opportunities, research, and activities at a few organizations with which toxicologists, including some SOT members, are affiliated. SOT TV recently expanded to include three interviews with SOT members on areas of toxicological interest:
Finally, many SOT Component Groups (Regional Chapters, Special Interest Groups, and Specialty Sections) held their own virtual events alongside the Virtual Meeting, where they recognized award recipients and conducted other important business. Remember that you can learn more about the outstanding accomplishments of many of the 2020 SOT Award recipients on the SOT website, with newly added testimonials from the 2020 Endowment Award recipients.
The Society is grateful to the Virtual Meeting Supporters for sustaining the meeting programming and for making the Virtual Meeting possible. The Supporters’ contributions to the meeting, even during these uncertain times, highlight their commitment to the Society’s mission of creating a safer and healthier world. 2020 Diamond Supporters included Boehringer Ingelheim, the Burroughs Wellcome Fund, Colgate-Palmolive Company, Gilead, Merck, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Pfizer, Sanofi, the SOT Endowment Fund, and Syngenta. The full list of Virtual Meeting Supporters is available on the Annual Meeting website.
As we close the chapter on the 2020 Virtual Meeting, we shift our attention to the 2021 Annual Meeting and ToxExpo, which is scheduled for March 14–18 in Orlando, Florida. Don’t forget that the abstract deadline has been extended to December 1 to accommodate lab closures and related events. The full Annual Meeting website will launch on August 3, so be sure to check back regularly for the latest updates on next year’s meeting.