The UCSF-GIVI Developmental Core seeks to accelerate the growth of eariy-career HIV investigators by providing access to its widely recognized two-year mentoring program, by conducting a robust, peerreviewed pilot grants program and by promoting assembly of multidisciplinary teams involving both eariycareer and senior investigators to tackle leading-edge questions emerging in HIV research. During the past four years of funding, 44 eariy-career investigators participated in CFAR's mentoring program. These nvestigators were paired with experienced mentors for regular meetings, participated in a workshop series geared to important topics in career progression and presented their work at an annual CFAR Mentoring symposium. Recognizing that the success of its mentoring program depends on the skill of its volunteer mentors, the Developmental Core also launched a 12-month "Mentoring for Mentors" program led by a highly skilled organizational psychologist. The CFAR Developmental Core also spearheaded efforts to centralize all pilot grants programs at UCSF resulting in creation ofthe Resource Allocation Program that now receives 50% of its funding from the UCSF Provost's office. CFAR offers grants in four areas including general pilots, basic science, and mentored scientist awards for either domestic or international work. During the past four years, 63 investigators received CFAR grants totaling $2,320,000. CFAR also helped secure additional funding for 22 awards totaling $1,778,000 through competition for administrative supplements. The mission ofthe UCSF-GIVI CFAR is to promote multi-disciplinary HIV research and the Developmental Core plays a central role. In the past 4 years, young investigators have been brought into multidisciplinary research teams addressing key scientific problems like HIV and Aging, HIV infection in women, and new biomedical approaches to prevention. Additionally, to foster more innovation throughout the Center, an open competition among CFAR members was conducted where meritorious ideas were selected for strategic kickstarter funding. Among others, this program resulted in the creation of a voucher program for young investigators to use CFAR's scientific cores and initial funding for an inexpensive, point-of-care HIV viral load assay deployable in resource-limited settings. CFAR is very proud of the accomplishments of its Developmental Core and proposes to continue its Mentoring and Pilot Grants programs with an emphasis of expanding the international impact of both. In all of these activities, CFAR will ensure full financial transparency and effective management of conflicts of interest emerging during its review processes.
Encouraging the development of the next generation of HIV investigators is critical if momentum is to be maintained as the first generation of HIV investigators near the end of their careers. CFAR is investing in the next generation of HIV investigator by providing a widely acclaimed mentoring program, funding a robust pilot grants program, and providing an opportunity for early career investigators to join multidisciplinary research teams.
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