The goal of the proposed program is focused on increasing the number of well-trained minority undergraduate students who enter doctoral training and biological science research careers in the biomedical sciences and do research in areas of interest to NHLBI. The application seeks funds to support 14 undergraduate students/yr for summer research in biomedical research such as cardiovascular, pulmonary or hematological disorders who will participate in the 10 week Summer Honors Undergraduate Research Program (SHURP) of the Division of Medical Sciences based at Harvard Medical School. There are currently 475 alumni and 97% of them have or are planning to continue training in the biomedical sciences. The objectives are (1) to increase students'knowledge of biomedical research and career choices, (2) to improve their research-related skills and confidence in those skills, (3) to stimulate their interest in pursuing careers in biomedical research, especially in areas of interest to NHLBI, (4) to improve the students'ability to select n appropriate program and to prepare a successful application, (5) to provide intra-program and post-program mentoring, (6) to assist the program alumni in building a professional network. The major focus of the program is research in laboratories of Harvard Medical School faculty members who are successful research mentors in the PhD and MD/PhD programs and who do research in areas of interest to NHLBI. Laboratory research is supplemented by required weekly student-faculty research discussion seminars, training in the Responsible Conduct of Research, career exploration and development workshops, participation in the Leadership Alliance Symposium, mentoring by graduate students, and other opportunities to meet faculty and graduate and medical students. Applicants are recruited nationwide through personal contacts with undergraduate program directors and SHURP alumni, promotion of the program at minority science student research or career conferences, mailings to science program directors, and print and on-line advertisements. Students are selected from over 500+ applicants/yr on the basis of their interest in research, intellectual competence, and teacher assessment of cognitive and personal skills. The program is evaluated by the trainees, faculty research mentors, trainees'college science advisors and by an External Advisory Committee. Follow-up activities include regular contact with trainees to provide advice and networking opportunities, a twice-yearly alumni newsletter, a periodically- updated alumni directory, campus visits, and informal telephone, letter, and email contacts with program alumni. These contacts also allow us to track the applicants and their career paths.
Diversity and inclusion are crucial for the discovery and development of more effective detection and treatment of cardiovascular,pulmonary and hematological disorders. This grant seeks to address this issue by providing training opportunities in the areas relevant to the interests of NHLBI for college students with limited access to research and/or from underrepresented groups.