Over the past five years, the UJMT Global Consortium ? comprising the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Johns Hopkins University, Morehouse School of Medicine, and Tulane University ? has supported mentored training at 28 affiliated sites in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). By all core metrics, the UJMT fellowship program has been highly successful: 132 doctoral students and postdoctoral students trained, 109 manuscripts published (including 69 as first author), 204 conference abstracts presented, and ~$1.7 million in program co-funding raised. Over half of our postdoctoral fellows have taken academic positions after completing the program; many have successfully competed for research funding, including from the NIH, to become independently funded investigators. In the coming grant cycle (2017-2022), we will expand upon these strengths to further build capacity in global health research. First, we will enrich the pool of talented US and LMIC investigators committed to solving global health problems. We will recruit doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows from 33 domestic training programs (i.e., T32) and 17 international programs (i.e., D43, R25) affiliated with our institutions. We will provide 12-month, intensively mentored field opportunities that connect trainees with experts across a wide range of scientific areas and disciplines. We will continue to foster research in HIV/AIDS, non-communicable diseases, emerging infections, cancers, mental health, neurologic disorders, and women's health. Second, we will implement and iteratively improve a program curriculum tailored to the professional development goals of trainees, alumni, and mentors. We will build upon the activities of our current program (e.g., scientific writing, webinars, core skills checklists), while enhancing new areas such as cultural competency and global research ethics. We will also dedicate resources to improving mentorship within our program, including support for trainees and mentors alike. Third, we will strategically allocate resources to support LMIC site capacity building. We will competitively award funds for workshops and short courses, specialty skills training, and equipment to support long-term research infrastructure. We will collaborate with existing D43 training programs in our focus countries to maximize the impact of our investments. In countries with high capacity (e.g., Malawi, Peru, Uganda), we will help to align and coordinate ongoing activities; in countries with fewer dedicated resources for capacity building (e.g., Ghana, Sierra Leone), we will facilitate South-South and North-South partnerships to identify gaps and prioritize needs for future grant support. Our program leverages a unique set of resources, training faculty, and sites that directly further four of the five strategic goals set forth by the Fogarty International Center in 2014: building research capacity, supporting implementation science, advancing research on communicable and non-communicable diseases, and forming partnerships to advance global health research.
Over the past five years, the UJMT Global Consortium has provided intensively mentored research fellowships to U.S. and international trainees. This program has been highly successful and provided an important career pathway for investigators committed to global health. In this application, we leverage this training platform to further build research capacity at affiliated sites in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
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