AFP is gearing up for its annual editors' conference, which coincides with AAFP's National Conference of Family Practice Residents and Medical Students. At this time, AFP's medical editors gather with staff editors for a two-day conference to develop editorial policies and rekindle friendships. As part of the tradition during that week, AFP staff members conduct an orientation for the newest AFP editorial fellow, whose year-long term starts at the first of July. This year we are particularly pleased to welcome Sumi Makkar, M.D., as the 2000–01 John C. Rose Medical Editing Fellow.
Dr. Makkar will be a familiar face at this year's editors' conference, since her affiliation with the journal goes back to 1996. She started out as a student representative of the editorial advisory board after completing a medical editing clerkship at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. She became a resident representative to the editorial advisory board in 1997. Dr. Makkar and another resident, Dr. Amy Crawford-Faucher, founded the quarterly “Resident and Student Voice” section in AFP, which debuted in the July 1997 issue. For the past several years, Dr. Makkar has juggled promoting RSV at the National Conference and attending the editors' conferences at the AAFP headquarters.
If you haven't read the special RSV section yet, you might want to return to the previous issue of AFP to see how one resident survived biases against family medicine at an orphan school and continued her plans to become a family physician (July 1, 2000, page 258). The RSV section contains perspectives from students and residents that have something to offer everyone. Pieces such as “Don't Scream, Miss Annie. Don't Scream.” (January 1, 1999, page 213) and “My Needlestick” (July 1999, page 329) are powerful reminders of the challenges that physicians take on from the early beginnings of their careers. The title of resident editor of RSV has been passed to Jennifer Reidy, Andover, Mass., and the title of student editor has gone to Soni Nageswaren, Berkeley, Calif.
Drawing from her experience as editor of RSV, Dr. Makkar will have a head start on the editorial duties she'll assume during her fellowship. Working out of AFP's editorial offices at Georgetown University, Washington, D.C., Dr. Makkar will join other medical editors in soliciting and editing articles and departments for the journal. She says that as editor of RSV, she learned a lot about solicitation, as well as how to stay organized and keep on top of things. That experience has taught her that there's simply a phenomenal amount of work to be done on the journal, with lots of deadlines. She believes that working with authors to develop ideas for RSV has stimulated her creativity, and editing has helped hone her grammar skills.
Dr. Makkar has lived in Washington, D.C., since her graduation from medical school. She received her medical degree in 1996 at the University of Miami, where she also completed her undergraduate studies. She's currently volunteering at a Hispanic community health center in Adams Morgan, D.C. Soon she will begin the clinical part of her fellowship at Upper Cordozo Health Center, also in Adams Morgan. She will be precepting about a half day every week at Ft. Lincoln Family Medicine Center and teaching residents and students two days a week, while also attending to hospital duties and doing on-call obstetrics. Although the two days a week she plans to devote to editorial duties will top off an already full schedule, the fellowship seemed like the natural thing for her to do—and things just “clicked.” We're glad they did.