394,044 Steps: Every Step Counts

394,044 steps… 182 miles… 293 kilometers… 12 days.

Many of you know or saw on social media that I recently completed the pilgrimage walk from Porto, Portugal to Santiago de Compostela, Spain.

Every one of my 394,044 steps counted toward my goal. It was a personal journey for me; but, there was something incredibly powerful in co-existing in my journey with others who were pursuing theirs. Each step got me closer to my goal, which ended up being something bigger than myself and more than what my individual step count could reveal. The unexpected benefit was joining a community of people who committed to the same journey – for their own reasons – and realizing we all met common achievement.

The same goes for ASTCT! Make Every Step Count. In our own way, we can all make strides toward a common goal.

Step 1 : Engage with us digitally. Have you downloaded our Practice Guidelines mobile app? The app provides up to date access to practice guidelines, evidence-based reviews and position statements from the ASTCT Committee on Practice Guidelines. Have you participated in our Twitter journal chats? During our Twitter journal chats, ASTCT chooses an article or guideline posted in our journal and poses questions to our followers meant to spark comments and conversations about the article or topic. These are great first steps to have access to practice guidelines and engage with our community.

Step 2: Be an author. Have you considered being a contributor to our Journal via an article submission? Our journal focuses on current technology and knowledge in the interdisciplinary field of hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and the growing field of transplant and non-transplant cellular immunotherapies. The Journal publishes original research reports, practice guidelines, reviews, editorials, commentaries and letters to the editor. Or, would you like to contribute to our online publication, Nucleus? Nucleus is the core of news and information for the cellular therapy community, with focus on topics including MRD, BiTE, CAR T and GVHD.

Step 3: Be an attendee. Consider submitting an abstract to present at the 2023 Tandem Meetings of ASTCT & CIBMTR or start planning now to join us for the 2023 Basic and Translational Scientific Retreat with EBMT taking place this spring in Spain. At Tandem, leading experts in the field of transplantation and cellular therapy from around the world will present the latest developments during plenaries, concurrent sessions, oral abstracts, posters, tracks, meet-the-professor sessions and more. We welcome and value your abstract submissions and contributions. I can’t wait to make my way back to Spain for the Scientific Retreat with EBMT, which will last 2.5 days. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about and engage with cutting-edge basic and translational biology in the field, as well as have informal networking opportunities.

Step 4: Educate yourself. ASTCT has robust on-demand education offerings. Have you reviewed those lately? These resources include webinars, courses and publications by ASTCT. This can all be conveniently accessed in ASTCT’s Learning Center using your ASTCT member information. Many of the offerings are free to members and provide continuing education credit.

Step 5: Advocate for your field. ASTCT actively advocates at both the federal and state levels on behalf of our members and patients, ensuring the voices of our members are heard. Are you watching your email inbox for our ASTCT Advocate newsletter on the issues and how you can engage?

Whew! Just five steps – countless more yet to go!

Please remember that every step counts – for you, for our community, for our patients. With each step you take, know a colleague is taking one, too. Our own steps, but on a path toward a common achievement.


Keep stepping!

Brenda M. Sandmaier, MD


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