$3.2 million NIH award goal is to expand ranks of researchers
A new Medical School program is set to begin this summer that will introduce pre-doctoral students from several disciplines to clinical research training. The Multidisciplinary Clinical Researchers in Training Program, which is the first of its kind in the United States, gives pre-doctoral students in medicine, dentistry, nursing and pharmacy the choice of a summer practicum or a 12-month degree track. The program implements novel, flexible institutional clinical research training and provides efficient entry of interested students into clinical research careers.
"This program, funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is a way to encourage young people to consider a career in clinical research," says Dr. Sewon Kang, a professor of dermatology and director of the new program. "It provides interested students access to a level of clinical research training that is appropriate to their career stage and level of interest, yet accommodates their evolving training needs."
The summer practicum, not to be confused with the Summer Biomedical Research Program, will accept 10 trainees and consists of four components:
• Orientation and required training in the protection of human subjects and the responsible conduct of research;
• Mentored participation in an ongoing research endeavor;
• Group project in clinical research; and
• Weekly structured exposures to different stages of the clinical research process.
"One scenario we hope will play out is for students in the summer practicum to become so interested in clinical research that they take a year-long break from medicine or one of the allied health programs to become immersed in a clinical research project and earn a degree before returning to their original program," Kang says.
• Drug Development and Discovery
• Genomics and Proteomics
• Tissue, Device and Regenerative Medicine
• Healthcare Delivery and Outcomes
• Clinical Translation and Community Based Research
According to Kang, the 12-month program is both didactic and practical, culminating in a Masters of Science in Clinical Research degree from the School of Public Health, a Certificate in Clinical Research, or a doctorate degree option.
Both the summer and 12-month programs include a competitive stipend. While there is tuition for the 12-month program, half will be paid by Rackham Graduate School and the other half by the trainee's school. The NIH grant also provides funding for participation in a two-day training session at the National Institutes of Health for those in the 12-month program.
It is not necessary to complete the summer practicum, in order to enroll in the 12-month program.
The Center for the Advancement of Clinical Research (CACR) played a major role in developing the program and grant proposal. Now that the new education program is about to start, CACR will be involved in its ongoing management. Students interested in learning more should contact Monica Stiddom at firstname.lastname@example.org