The Florida Atlantic University (FAU) initiative, Research Advancement &Innovation for Scientific Excellence - Undergrad Pipelines (RAISE UP), aims to increase the diversity of the NIH-funded workforce. We will identify infrastructure needs and operationalize strategies that support the expansion of existing student pipelines and institutional collaborations to recruit and promote the development of scientists underrepresented in biomedical research. FAU is uniquely positioned to fulfill the NIH BUILD initiative goals. We have two diverse undergraduate populations - FAU, the most ethnically diverse institution in Florida's State University System and Florida Agricultural &Mechanical University (FAMU), Florida's oldest historically black university. We have existing programs that target both of these populations - FAU's Quality Enhancement Program, an undergraduate research- and inquiry-based program, and the FAMU-FAU Medical Scholars Program, a Bachelor of Science - Doctor of Medicine track that recruits promising FAMU students into FAU's College of Medicine. Finally, FAU has partnerships with internationally renowned research institutes: Scripps Research Institute, Max Planck Florida Institute, Vaccine &Gene Therapy Institute, and Torrey pines Institute for Molecular Studies. These institutes benchmark research excellence, and create additional opportunities and student capacity that can support an outstanding BUILD program. Our goal is to expand existing programs to establish a 6UILD consortium of FAU, FAMU and our research institute partners which will develop the research and administrative infrastructure needed to support a sustainable BUILD program.
Aim 1 : Consortium Development: To assemble and capitalize upon existing resources of the consortium partners listed above and establish the operation of the consortium focused on BUILD objectives.
Aim 2 : Assessment and Development: To collect quantitative and qualitative data relevant to student recruitment, success and retention to better understand barriers and opportunities to higher degrees in biomedical science;to plan strategies to strengthen research recruitment, training and capacity.
Aim 3 : Collaborative Consortium Engagement: To analyze results of data collected in Aim 2 and identify best practices to recruit, retain and nurture under represented scientists.
Aim 4 : RAISE UP Proposal Assembly: To design a multi-year BUILD proposal leveraging the 5 elements of BUILD: tuition scholarships;research experiences;salary offset;mentor training;and an innovation space
Increasing the diversity of the NIH-funded workforce is essential to the biomedical enterprise and society. FAU is committed to increasing the recruitment and mentored training of under-represented scientists in biomedical research to broaden the scope of inquiry and narrow the health gap. We will develop a consortium with world-class research institutions to increase the diversity of doctoral scholars.