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National scientific congress of medical students: how much do the Peruvian universities support?

Congreso científico nacional de estudiantes de medicina: ¿Qué tanto apoyan las universidades peruanas?

Dear editor:

Every year in Peru, the National Scientific Congress brings medical students together to share knowledge and research. Only one of the scientific societies of medical students (SOCEM) is chosen and usually carries out the National Scientific Congress, with little or no support from their universities.

From the economic point of view, more than half of the scientific congresses carried out in the last six years came to fruition with little support from the study house. Administrative support is perceived in the same direction, a fact that is unfortunate since it does not demand higher expenses, as it could be understood in the economic aspect, but rather, commitment and willingness to support students to carry out quality events that promote and raise academic academic standards. In contrast, the presence of institutional authorities at the opening, closing and official activities of the congress is remarkable, although they do not actively support either the organization and the logistics of the event.

Scientific societies of medical students are motivators of undergraduate scientific research, with tangible results in the number of student publications in medical journals [1]. Despite this, their recognition and support by the university authorities are precarious [2]. Paradoxically, Nationals Scientifics Congress are perceived as successful, even with the limited support of their host institutions in economical and administrative aspects [2],[3].

Because of the importance of the National Scientific Congress in promoting undergraduate scientific research, they should be supported by universities and even by non-SOCEM students who sometimes do not even know about their existence [4], even though curricula include research as an important part in medical training, seems to be something that doesn’t go beyond the role [5]. However, when scientific societies of medical students succeed in successfully completing a National Scientific Congress, the study house usually awards achievements that correspond exclusively to the scientific societies of medical students. It is necessary, then, that the university authorities recognize and support work of these small groups of medical students, especially if they are capable of holding such important events with great success but with little or no support.


From the editor
The authors originally submitted this article in Spanish and English. The Journal has not copyedited this English version.

Declaration of conflicts of interest
The authors do not present conflicts of interest, since they have not participated like organizers, nor members of the National Scientific Congresses.

The authors declare that they have not received any funding for this letter.