Online communities for professional networking and support have been around for decades, and most residents now entering training are already taking advantage of at least a few of these forums to make new connections and seek formal or informal guidance. ASA Community – the nation's largest online discussion platform for anesthesiologists – should certainly be one of them. Here's why.

Residency is a period of high-intensity learning that focuses primarily on mastering “hard” clinical skills, but also ends in the expectation that graduates leave training equipped with the “soft” skills necessary to communicate effectively and organize and lead a care team. Easier said than done, as these leadership and life skills are rarely included in a resident's formal education. Many programs do acknowledge the importance of these skills and are looking for ways to incorporate them into residency training.

That's where mentorship comes in, and there is value in casting...

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