There is a critical, national need for an increased number and diversity of health professionals who are actively engaged in clinical and translational research, working to eliminate health disparities and improve minority health. In response to this need, the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus, with NIH support (RR017589), has been a leader, having developed and implemented a successful academic program in clinical research, the Master of Science in Clinical Research (MSc) program. To continue and build on our success in increasing the number, quality, and diversity of outstanding Hispanic clinical and translational investigators, we submit this renewal application in response to PAR-11-325, Clinical Research Education and Career Development (CRECD) in Minority Institutions (R25). We propose to expand the availability of current resources to well qualified candidates from partner academic institutions and research centers in Puerto Rico and continue to foster collaborations with US mainland researchers.
The specific aims of this application are: (1) to strengthen research education and career development in Puerto Rico through the implementation of the revised post-doctoral Master of Science in Clinical and Translational Research (MCTR) curriculum;and (2) to develop a diverse group of Hispanic scientists with the necessary knowledge and skills to pursue clinical and translational research, particularly in diseases and healthcare conditions that disproportionately impact minority populations. To further these aims, we propose to strengthen the current post-doctoral program by increasing collaboration with other research training programs, intensifying research mentoring opportunities, and continuing to evaluate our efforts. These enhanced opportunities will ensure that Scholars will participate in on-going faculty research, research seminars, and national conferences. They will also receive publication, presentation, research dissemination, and grantsmanship experiences. We will strengthen the research capacity of the MCTR program through highly trained and experienced faculty and investigators who have productive track records in clinical and translational research in the areas of interest. The formation of thi new generation of clinical and translational investigators will be encouraged by providing administrative, physical, and fiscal support. This Hispanic Clinical and Translational Research Education and Career Development (HCTRECD) program is being further strengthened by fostering partnerships with the community, industry and national research-intensive institutions interested in addressing significant questions in minority health issues. Our ultimate goal is to enhance the participation of minority health professionals in clinical and translational research that will have a significant impact on the health of the community, particularly underrepresented minorities.
The proposed Hispanic Clinical and Translational Research Education and Career Development (HCTRECD) program will help support the efforts of the University of Puerto Rico, Medical Sciences Campus'(UPR-MSC) to increase diversity and the representation of Hispanic clinicians, physicians and scientists well prepared to assume the role of leaders in clinical and translational science that carry out research that address health disparities and improve minority health.
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