We were practically one and a half months away from the big day when we received confirmation that we would be holding the FMUL Open Day in a face-to-face format. The organisation of the whole event was the responsibility of the communication team. It was time to choose the official coordinators of the day, and the invitation was extended to Professor Rui Tato Marinho and Professor Catarina Sousa Guerreiro, who promptly joined us in this event.
Immediately, the first meeting was held. Many ideas were put on the table, but time was short, and we had to be practical to get everything ready and as functional as possible so there would be no mishaps. We opened a call to the whole Non-Teaching Staff community to build the work team for this day. Alongside this organisation of the Open Day, we also had the Futurália event, which forced us to split the communication team in half and set up two separate teams to plan both events. Despite there being two projects simultaneously, the delivery was total.
The day before the 5th of April, it was total hustle and bustle. The day was spent in meetings polishing the last details for the next day. The tables were filled with lists with the names of all the students selected for the Open Day. I lost count of the number of times we counted the total number of students, the requests to participate kept coming in and we were always checking to see if we could fit someone else in, depending on the number of confirmed presences we had. Nothing could fail and we couldn't have too many participants, beyond our maximum limit, otherwise we would risk not having lunch for everyone or the organization of the groups for the campus visits would stop working, because everything was very well designed and planned by Ana Rita Andrade, the vice-president of AEFML.
The day was long and started very early with the arrival of the first part of the team that would deal with check-in. It was necessary to identify all the students who would be under our responsibility throughout the day, thus having an identification that would help us identify who were the external FMUL students. At mid-morning the official start is given with the various welcome speeches, followed by several inspirational talks that would motivate the visiting students. We wanted to provide them with an immersive experience and to listen to real testimonies from those who work here, those who study here, and those who began studying here and now also work here.
Before the lunch break, it was time for the first activity with more interaction with each other, Speed Dating. Thirty-two guests shared what they do every day and what motivated them to choose medicine as a professional career. Divided into groups and in a circular fashion, passing through 4 different stations, the youngest listened attentively to each story that was told and asked several questions that clarified all their curiosities as spectators, because what they aspire is, in a few years, to be on the other side, as doctors, inspiring others.
The most awaited moment of the whole programme has arrived, the visit to the campus, which was divided between academic and hospital areas. In each area, the aspiring future doctors had a close contact with several health professionals, being able to see all that daily reality that was told to them, previously, in Speed Dating. The enthusiasm on their faces was evident as they walked along the corridors that cross FMUL and Santa Maria Hospital, passing by the Egas Moniz Building, in the visit to the iMM, and the Reynaldo dos Santos Building, where they visited the Technological Centre for Advanced Medicine (CTMA) and the Nutrition Laboratory (LN).
The day ended with a round table, provided by AEFML with the purpose of involving all participants, where the different activities of the Students' Association were presented and, finally, the conversation focused on three main topics: erasmus, sports and volunteering.
At the end, there was still room for a musical moment, in charge of the Tuna Médica de Lisboa and the usual photo, with the students and some members of the staff.
In conclusion, I want to leave a huge thank you to all those who somehow collaborated so that this day could happen. Without everyone's help, nothing would have been possible.