The Best Gig Ever: CMEpalooza Intern

Hello everyone. We’re back. Did you miss us?

Yes indeed, the CMEpalooza caravan is in operation once again after a much-needed rest following our Spring and Fall successes in 2019. Our staff returned recently from a week-long retreat in luxurious and balmy Pekin, IL, where we broke down the data on CMEpaloozas past and made plans for CMEpaloozas future. We’ve got some fun things in store for 2020, which we’ll get to, er, eventually.

We are here today, though, with some exciting news – we’re hiring! Well, sort of. OK, we’re not really hiring someone who will actually be paid, but we are looking to bring another energetic and entertaining voice into the CMEpalooza family in 2020. After six years of putting up with us making fun of each other in less and less creative ways, you deserve a new perspective, which is why we are officially opening up the process to select a CMEpalooza Spring 2020 Intern.

We thought of opening up the CMEpalooza coffers to put a flashy ad up on Indeed.com to attract applicants from around the world, but then we realized we didn’t have any coffers to open and so we had to settle for the corporate blog. Good news for you though – you now likely won’t be competing with anyone from the Seychelles for this gig.

So what exactly are the expected duties of the CMEpalooza Spring 2020 Intern?

  1. You’ll have the opportunity to contribute to the CMEpalooza blog at your leisure. Maybe once a month or so. You can write about just about anything that won’t offend people. Scott is in charge of the offensive material.
  2. We’ll have you shadow one of us virtually as we plan a CMEpalooza session. You’ll learn how the proverbial sausage is made. Maybe you’ll even pick up a thing or two that you can incorporate into your real job. You’ll likely even have the chance to show up on camera during a Spring session so you can show your doubting friends and family that, yes, you are officially part of the CMEpalooza team.
  3. You will spend every other Saturday with a bullhorn outside of your state capitol building singing the CMEpalooza fight song for 2 hours (optional duty)

What qualifications are we looking for?

  1. You should be working in CME in some capacity
  2. You should have a thick skin – it’s pretty certain that we will make fun of you at some point
  3. You should not be a Dallas Cowboys or Boston Celtics fan (sorry, we have to draw the line somewhere)

Beyond that, we’re open to anyone. Maybe you have only worked in CME for 1 year and want to learn more about our industry? Great. Maybe you’ve worked in CME for 25 years and want to do something fun in 2020? Also great. Maybe it’s been your lifelong dream to meet Derek and you think that this is your chance? You need professional help.

While this is an unpaid position, Derek has promised to send our CMEpalooza Spring 2020 Intern a half-eaten box of Thin Mints as a personal thank you (note from Derek: Very clever idea, Scott. Everyone knows there is no such thing as a half eaten box of Thin Mints.)

The application process for the CMEpalooza Spring 2020 Intern is simple and short. Fill out a brief questionnaire by clicking on this link to apply. Every answer is vitally important so please think before you respond. The application process will close on Friday, January 3, at which time a special task force will cull through the applications to select our winner. You can email us if you have any questions (our email address is on this site somewhere – you just need to find it).

A Brief Thank You and Apology

Another CMEpalooza has come and gone and Scott and I are so thankful and appreciative for everyone who participated, whether as a faculty member or as a participant. We could not — would not — do it without all of your support and it is a thrill for us to see the positive response CMEpalooza continues to get. Now, we need a few days/weeks/months to recover, recharge, and do it all over again!

I also want to take a moment to address a comment that was made on the CMEpalooza survey that we ask participants to complete. The comment stated that the “distracted boyfriend” meme I posted yesterday morning to promote CMEpalooza Day was “inappropriate and objectified women” and that we should apologize.

They are correct. I am the one who posted it and it was a bad judgement call by me. I have removed it and offer my sincere apologies to all. If anyone cares to discuss it or anything else related to CMEpalooza, you are welcome to send me a direct email at thecmeguy@gmail.com. Thank you.

Great Big CMEpalooza Quiz Answers

Thank you to everyone who participated in our wrapup session to CMEpalooza, The Great, Big, Play at Home in Your Jammies CME Quiz. We know covered a lot of information in a very short amount of time. Consequently, our faculty was kind enough to put together this document explaining all of the answers and providing detailed rationale. If you want to argue or disagree with any of these explanations, that’s why we provide links to all of our faculty LinkedIn pages on the agenda tab 🙂

Where Do I Watch CMEpalooza Fall?

Where do I watch CMEpalooza Fall?
You watch it on the LIVE page.

Will people be able to hear me on the broadcast?
No. You are not on the broadcast. You are only watching a video feed of the broadcast. You can play It’s Raining Tacos at full volume and no one will hear you except your neighbors, who might call the police, who might interrupt you while watching CMEpalooza. So, don’t play It’s Raining Tacos at full volume while watching CMEpalooza.

Can I watch CMEpalooza at the office?
Yes.

Can I watch CMEpalooza at home?
Yes.

Can I watch CMEpalooza in a conference room with 150 other people?
Please do.

Can I watch CMEpalooza while at a coffee shop?
That depends. Will you be drinking a skinny latte while watching? If yes, then no, you may not watch CMEpalooza Fall while at a coffee shop.

Can I watch CMEpalooza with the Real Housewives of New York?
I don’t know. Let’s ask them.

I guess they are busy.

Do I have to pre-register or register?
Nope.

Do I have to pay anything to watch CMEpalooza? I love paying registration fees.

No. You don’t have to pay anything to watch CMEpalooza.

Do I have to take a survey afterward?
Well, you don’t have to, but it would be nice if you did. It’s only seven questions and shouldn’t take you more than 60 seconds. If it takes you more than 60 seconds, Scott will come to your house and perform Brenda Lee’s I’m Sorry on the accordion.

Can I get a certificate for watching CMEpalooza?
Actually, yes. Well, kind of. We’re not accredited or certified or anything like that, and we have no way of verifying whether you actually watched any of these sessions or not. But if you want a certificate of completion that you can use to self-report participation in CMEpalooza Fall 2019, here you go. I’ll also post it on the LIVE page tomorrow. Who knows, maybe these certificates will be worth something 2,000 years from now.

How do I ask questions to the presenters?
Good question. There are two ways you can ask questions:

  1. Send a text to the CMEpalooza text line at 267-666-0CME (0263)
  2. Tweet a question using the #CMEpalooza hashtag

We try to get to as many questions as we can throughout each presentation.

Do I have to watch all the sessions?
YES! No. Watch what interests you.

Will the sound quality for each presenter be crystal clear with consistent volume and no glitches?
No. Will it be pretty good for most presenters? Yes. There will be some who sound better than others. There may be a few glitches and hiccups. That’s just how it goes with a free conference where presenters volunteer their time and use their own equipment. Some people aren’t comfortable doing a presentation while wearing headphones and a mic, so we don’t force them to use it. We do the best that we can with what we have available to us.

What if I’m busy during the day of the live broadcast?
All the sessions will be archived on the website, probably within 15 minutes of the conclusion of each session. How are we able to do it so fast? We have a new intern who is a real crackerjack on the interwebs. Here he is hard at work, writing our latest blog post.

 

Everything You Need to Know for CMEpalooza Week

I usually let Derek take the lazy way out in the blog with Top 10 lists, but we’re busy what with CMEpalooza Fall going live in less than 48 hours and all, so here are a few quick things to keep in mind:

  1. It goes without saying that you should either have blocked off your calendar by now or plan to call in sick on Wednesday. Really, there isn’t anything more important you should be doing between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET.
  2. If you suddenly get hungry, we have even built in a lunch break (or breakfast break if you are on the left coast) this year thanks to one of our Gold sponsors, AcademicCME. No, unfortunately, they will not be picking up the tab for your lunch. You’ll still have pay $6.99 for a McRib, which apparently is back again (Note from Derek: gross.) I’m not quite sure why.
  3. We’ll be using Poll Everywhere for a few of our sessions this year to get some interaction going. If you want to get a head start on things, you can download the app in the Apple store or Google Play for your mobile device. You don’t need to have the app, but I find it helpful to have it on my phone.
  4. We’re using a brand-new platform this year for our sessions called StreamYard. From the perspective of the viewer and panelist, you won’t note much of a difference. There are some different sorts of camera views we’ll be using, but otherwise, CMEpalooza will look the same as always. So then why am I telling you this? Hmm, good question. Moving on.
  5. When you have a few free moments, go look at our sponsors and check out some of the great work others are doing in CME/CE. I actually met one of our sponsors last week in person for the first time at one of their activities (I was helping at a program in an adjoining room). As with all of our sponsors, they seemed like good people.
  6. Feel free to use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc. to tell all of your friends and colleagues how cool you are by being a fan of CMEpalooza. Best fan post gets a virtual hug from Derek. He’s a cuddler.
  7. We encourage our live audience to ask questions during our sessions. We aren’t one of those annoying meetings where we hold all questions until the end of each session (God do I hate that). If you have a good question that is relevant to what our panel is talking about, we don’t mind butting in to ask it. There are several ways that will be listed on our LIVE page to ask questions. If your question is a good one, we’ll make sure it gets asked. If it’s bad, well, we may ignore you. Sorry.
  8. Want to offer some wardrobe suggestions for Derek and I during individual sessions? We’re game. I believe I saw a feather boa somewhere in Derek’s office (Room 421B in CMEpalooza HQ, right next to the trash chute). It’s not like we haven’t had panelists do dress-up sessions before. Derek and I have simply tried to uphold some sort of professional standards in the past. I think it’s time we admit that we have failed.
  9. There will once again be a survey after each session where we rely on your feedback to help plan future sessions. And to replenish our joke bucket (a recent fave: Did you hear about the fire at the cheese factory in France? All that was left was de brie).
  10. It’s almost time for tipoff, so let’s have a song everyone.

Of Course We Are Doing It Again: It’s CMEpalooza Haiku!

palooza haiku
of course we did it again
you know you love it

coming in one week
cmepalooza fall
be there or be square

9 AM ET – Creating a Community of Care Through Innovative Education, Outcomes and Point-of-Care Tools

great kick-off session
not great is that I forgot
the oxford comma

10 AM ET – You Can’t Do That in CME!

my dad always said
never say “I can’t do that”
turn can’t into can

11 AM ET – Grants Hotline

you people sure have
a whole bunch of grants questions
grants hotline can help

Noon ET – Lunch

first ever lunch break
or breakfast or morning snack
east coast bias? yes

1 PM ET – Back to the Future (of CME)

a look at the past
how did our predictions do?
then predict again

2 PM ET – CME Fads: Gone for Good or Coming Back Around?

gamification
the mullet of CME?
really makes you think

3 PM ET – Jake Powers, CME Detective – Accreditation with Complications

this might be the best
or the most ridiculous
thing I ever wrote

4 PM ET – The Great, Big, Play at Home in Your Jammies CME Quiz

you can win money
with your CME knowledge
what a world this is

Sponsors

haikus for sponsors
just one of the many perks
though not a great one

Gold

first time gold sponsor
cool cats from Med Learning Group
peep their video

repeat gold sponsor
Academic CME
thanks for the lunch break

Silver

i am very close
to Prova Education
five miles from home

PER has been
around since the mid-90’s
here’s video proof

and now for a group
that needs no introduction
we all know Medscape 

it’s not in-fo-graphed
try four syllables not three
say “in-fo-graph-ed

HME — short for
Haymarket Medical Ed
with MyCME

lots of global groups
Global Education Group
sole silver sponsor

need education
that has creative concepts?
check out CEC

the lower case “i”
in ASiM CE
is a mystery

The Proud, The Few, The CMEpalooza Bingo!! Winners

There was suspense, there was hype, there was even a bit of trash talking this morning as the qualified participants in the CMEpalooza Bingo!! gathered in the Executive Suite at CMEpalooza HQ for our prize drawing. Five $100 prizes were in the offing – for that kind of scratch, you could buy four cases of Whatchamacallit bars.

In the end, the winners were appropriately dignified, the losers gracious, and the morning’s emcee was, well, competent. We tried for Small Wonder star Tiffany Brissette, but she never responded to Derek’s stalker-like email. We’ll set our sights lower next year.

Here are your now filthy-rich CME colleagues:

  • Vanessa Gray, Director, Continuing Medical Education, Des Moines University Medicine and Health Sciences
  • Jill Hays, Executive Director, Primary Care Network
  • Allyson Baer, Program Manager, Data Analysis and Reporting, CE, American Society of Clinical Oncology
  • Amanda Kaczerski, Senior Director, Educational Strategy & Design, Academy for Continued Healthcare Learning
  • Noreen Duffey, CME Program Administrator, American College of Physicians

Congrats to our winners. To our losers (and everyone else), don’t forget that we’ll be giving away another $500 during our 4 p.m. session of CMEpalooza Fall. This one requires more skill than luck, so brush up on your industry knowledge.

Last Chance for CMEpalooza Bingo!!

Scott tells me I am supposed to remind everyone about the CMEpalooza Bingo!! thing, so, fine. All the forms you need to play can be accessed by clicking on this link and you can get all the details on how to play by looking at Monday’s blog post. Entries are due this Sunday evening for some reason that makes zero sense to me, but whatever. I’m sure Scott has a good reason for it [eye roll]. But, you can win some cash money, so get those forms in soon!

OK, with that out of the way, let’s move on to the main reason for this blog post, which is to announce a totally original idea for a new game that I created all by myself. I call it CMEpalooza Day Bingo!!!

Now, you may be thinking to yourself that this sounds very similar to CMEpalooza Bingo!! and this will be very confusing. I assure you that CMEpalooza Bingo!! and CMEpalooza Day Bingo!!! are very different. For starters, I added the word “Day” and an extra exclamation mark to the title to make sure it was obvious which is which.

Second, you will not win any money in CMEpalooza Day Bingo!!! or any other prize. The enjoyment of participating will be prize enough! Also, Scott wouldn’t give me any money 😦

Lastly, CMEpalooza Day Bingo!!! is designed for you to play on the day of CMEpalooza (Wednesday, October 16). You now see the cleverness of the title, no? Just click here to print our your CMEpalooza Day Bingo!!! card and play along while watching all the sessions during CMEpalooza Fall. If you win, give yourself a hearty pat on the back, because we are all winners on CMEpalooza day!

Sing along with CMEpalooza

B-I-N-G-O, B-I-N-G-O, B-I-N-G-O, and CMEpalooza Bingo!! is it’s Name-O.

Just a reminder to everyone to make sure to carve out some time this week to participate in our sponsor event and give yourself a pretty darn good chance to win a $100 Amazon gift card. If you need it, that is. If you have billions and billions of dollars of disposable income, you might want to put someone else’s name on your entry form to give them a chance. Just sayin’.

All the forms you need to play can be accessed by clicking on this link. You can get all the details on how to play by looking at Monday’s blog post. Entries are due this Sunday evening in the third quarter of whatever NFL game is on, or thereabouts.

It’s That Time Again – CMEpalooza Bingo!! is Here

There isn’t much out in the public forum these days that doesn’t raise your blood pressure.

Your team sucks! Your party sucks! You cheated! You lied! Lock her up! Impeach him! I would have gotten away with it if it weren’t for you meddling kids!

Perhaps that is why Derek and I try so hard to bring some levity and joy into your lives with this blog and CMEpalooza in general. I’ll give you an example. Last week during a conversation with one of the panel moderators for CMEpalooza Fall, she started telling me that, “We’re thinking of doing something a little quirky with our introductions, but we’re not sure if it’ll be OK. What we’d like to do is…”

I interrupted her before she got any further.

“Yes, yes, a million times yes. Do whatever quirky or unusual or odd thing you want. That’s what we do.”

I mean, really people, how many other otherwise serious events have panelists dress up like Star Wars characters?

You know what else we do at CMEpalooza that should both make you happy and is never replicated at another event, especially a free event? That’s right, we give away money. This fall, we’re actually giving away money twice, as you may have seen in last week’s post about our 4 pm ET session.

Today, though, marks the launch of our more traditional financial free-for-all. In the fall, we call this CMEpalooza Bingo!! The second exclamation point is just because it’s extra awesome.

The distribution of prize money will be a little bit different this year because, well, we just feel like it. There will be 5 winners, each getting $100 Amazon gift cards. That’s $500 in total for all of you math majors. Last fall, our giant hopper wasn’t big enough to hold all of the successful entries we got for CMEpalooza Bingo!! so we ordered a new one shipped all the way from Camden, NJ. Let’s put it to good use, people.

Here be the rules to CMEpalooza Bingo!!:

STEP 1: Download all of the necessary Bingo forms by clicking on this link. That will give you the Bingo board, the Bingo questions, and the Bingo answer sheet. You should also queue up our Sponsor page, which will give you direct links to all of the websites you will need to visit.

STEP 2: A successful entry involves completing a Bingo – it can be horizontal (that’s straight across), vertical (that’s up and down), or diagonal (that’s, um, diagonal).

Special note: For the second straight year, we have too many sponsors to fit onto a bingo board, so a successful entry also involves completing the clue for one of our two Gold sponsors – Med Learning Group or Academic CME. So a total of six (6) answers are necessary this year for a successful entry. That’s more time you can spend playing CMEpalooza Bingo!! and less time you need to spend doing your “real job.” You are welcome.

STEP 3: Email your completed form to me at scott@medcasewriter.com along with a witty subject line (witty subject line is optional). Entry deadline is 9:23 p.m. ET on Sunday, October 6. Yes, 9:23 p.m. ET. Why? No reason. It just is.

Go to it everyone.