The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has selected 52 innovative, research-oriented students for the 2016-2017 Medical Research Scholars Program (MRSP). A year-long residential program, the MRSP introduces medical, dental, and veterinary students to cutting-edge research, and is part of NIH's goal of training the next generation of clinician-scientists and biomedical researchers. The program places students in NIH laboratories and patient care areas, including the NIH Clinical Center, to conduct basic, translational, or clinical research in areas that match their career interests and research goals.
The fifth class of MRSP participants include two dental students and 50 medical students. They represent 34 accredited universities in the United States.
“The program is an incredible opportunity for us to get involved with NIH at an early stage of our careers, and is an invaluable experience in preparing us to be the next generation of physicians who are able to advance innovative patient care through research,” said Sonia Guar, a 2016-17 MRSP scholar from Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia. “I am so excited to work closely with mentors and future colleagues who are united by a strong passion for expanding and tackling medicine through the process of discovery.”
“This year-long research enrichment program is very often the starting point for a successful research-oriented career. These 52 scholars clearly represent future academic leaders and biomedical researchers in this country,” said Frederick P. Ognibene, MD, NIH Clinical Center Deputy Director for Educational Affairs and Strategic Partnerships.
In addition to a rigorous research agenda, MRSP scholars participate in lecture series focusing on career development, journal club seminars, clinical teaching rounds, and other courses. They also highlight their research in formal presentations to the NIH community and at professional conferences. Each scholar is assigned an advisor, who provides guidance in defining a well-articulated career development plan and selecting a dedicated NIH research mentor. Mentors are fulltime NIH investigators with established and successful basic, translational, or clinical research programs.
The MRSP is co-sponsored by the NIH and other partners, including the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the American Association for Dental Research, the Colgate-Palmolive Company, Genentech and alumni of student research programs and other individual supporters via contributions to the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health. More than 180 students have completed the program since 2012.