The goal of the University of Michigan WRHR Program is to increase the number and effectiveness of obstetrician/gynecologist scientists through a departmental-based, multidisciplinary junior faculty development program. We propose to recruit physician faculty to develop their women's reproductive health research careers for a minimum of two and up to five years. Recruitment of scholars with outstanding potential will be primarily from obstetric/gynecology fellowship programs. During the past ten years, we have developed a track record of training a number of outstanding obstetrician/gynecologists in our department for careers in academic medicine. It is our goal to select the most promising candidates for appointment from three year ABOG approved subspecialty fellowships as well as Minimally Invasive Surgery, Family Planning, Genetics, Breast and Women's Health fellowships, AGOS fellows, and Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar programs to participate in the WRHR. Special medical school-wide programs are in place to recruit and support under-represented minority scholars. From among the potential mentors in the department's Reproductive Sciences Program and related Initiative for Women's Health researchers, we have chosen those with proven records of accomplishment in fostering research career development. The research programs of these mentors span cutting edge cellular and molecular aspects of reproductive biology to translational and clinical research.
We aim to target programmatic content in specific areas of pelvic floor and urogynecology research, reproductive science biology, and reproductive and perinatal genetics, where institutional strengths support development of junior faculty. A Career Development Program and Center Advisory Committee will assure that the scholars have the best possible environment for success. The program will be measured by the success of WRHR scholars achieving research independence and in receiving extramural funding. The University of Michigan has a current BIRCWH program. We request support for a WRHR program to focus specifically on developing careers of multidisciplinary trained obstetrician/gynecologists. The WRHR program will complement the BIRCWH program since only obstetrician/gynecologists will be candidates for the WRHR program and it will offer a distinct opportunity for these scholars to develop their research programs in areas of specialty-focused relevance and interest with excellent mentors while at the same time opportunity to interact with a different cadre of women's health scholars with many opportunities for cross-training and peer-support.
Women's reproductive health issues including maternal health and well-being, reproduction, and gynecologic cancer are key not only to a major segment of the population but to the health all Americans. Scientific advances in reproductive biology, perinatal genetics, translational research in gynecologic cancers, clinical research in reproductive transition across the lifespan, and pelvic floor disorders have potential to substantially impact women, especially underserved and minority women nationally.
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