Leveraging an existing strong foundation of training, mentorship and research, the Indiana University School of Medicine (IUSM) Indiana Pediatric Scientist Award (IPSA) program will accelerate the success of junior faculty in bridging the gap between training and independence. We have designed a program specifically for pediatric physician scientists that will provide our junior faculty with a blueprint for success, structured mentorship and guidance and progressive goals in order to achieve independent funding within a 5 year period. The IPSA program provides customized multi-disciplinary mentorship and attention to individual learning styles, backgrounds and interests for each CHRCDA scholar enabling us to produce well-trained, independent investigators who can stretch the limits of current scientific knowledge. Pediatric researchers at IUSM have established international reputations in the fields of hematopoiesis, cancer research, diabetes, obesity, vascular disease and neonatology, to name a few. Our goal with this application is to establish an additional, key component to the development of a steady, continuous pipeline of talented new pediatric researchers that IUSM has been building during the last decade. Our Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) initiates the training of future physician scientists and has been highly successful in drawing members of under- represented minority students and women into biomedical sciences and pediatrics. This emphasis on the integration of medicine and science is sustained in our postgraduate pediatric scholars program for residents and fellows interested in academic medicine. Furthermore, our existing T32, T35, K30, K32, and K15 programs assure that trained pediatricians receive the advanced skills they need to pursue scientific work in a range of research that represents the full spectrum of basic and translational sciences. With this proposal, we seek to strengthen the "last mile," of our pipeline of talent, ensuring the successful transition of well trained junior faculty into independent research careers, retaining them as productive pediatrician-scientists. The IUSM Pediatric Department has recognized the national shortage of physician-scientists in all fields and particularly in pediatrics. As a result, leadersip of the department has made a strong and consistent commitment to increasing the number of Pediatric physician scientists at IUSM and nationally by committing departmental resources and engaging major philanthropic groups such as the Lilly Endowment and the Riley Children's Foundation. The university has also committed extensive resources over the last decade to increasing the facilities, equipment and resources necessary for aggressive growth in this area and the result has been a significant increase in federal funding. Of ranked Pediatric Departments, IUSM has consistently been in the top 5-8% nationally in NIH funding during the last 8 years. This award will contribute to maintaining that successful trend and accelerating the number of independent investigators contributing to bettering health care for children.
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