Leanne Rees is a PhD candidate at La Trobe University and physiotherapist with the Victorian Spinal Cord Service in Melbourne, Australia. In 2018, she completed a Master of Public Health, fostering an interest in the social and environmental determinants of health and wellbeing for people with SCI, and the role media has in the public health space. In 2019, Leanne commenced a PhD investigating media portrayal of SCI and its impact on people living with SCI. Leanne is carrying out her PhD in consultation with an advisory group of people with SCI who have a shared interest of SCI in media.
Leanne shares her experiences from the conference.
Thanks to the SRI Travel Grant I was able to attend the 2022 ISCoS Annual Scientific Meeting in Vancouver. This was the first time attending a conference in person since commencing my PhD in 2019, which was most valuable. I presented two posters relating to my research – media portrayal of spinal cord injury and the consumer engagement experience. Colleagues in Canada have done, and continue to do, a lot of work in the consumer engagement space, so it was great to put faces to the names and discuss how consumer engagement can form part of doctoral research. Media portrayal of SCI on the other hand is a topic previously not explored, and while there is interest in Australia, it was validating to hear people with SCI and colleagues from other countries also find this a pertinent issue. Informal discussions helped build networks for future research opportunities and making contacts also helped inform a travel fellowship application.