The goal of the Molecular Biology Program at the University of Colorado Denver Anschutz Medical Campus is to train outstanding research scientists and academicians who will become future leaders in their chosen fields and disciplines. To accomplish this goal we carefully select high quality students with strong academic records and a demonstrated aptitude, commitment and passion for research. The training program is flexible and highly student orientated to meet individual needs, but at the same time has a rigorous curriculum, sets high standards and is very well organized. Molecular Biology is designed as a 5-6 year program with the first year devoted to challenging course work and laboratory rotations, the second year to the development of a research hypothesis, and the remaining years to completion of the thesis research project under the guidance of a training faculty mentor and thesis committee. To further develop research skills, students at all stages of the curriculum participate in additional program specific activities including a weekly seminar series, roundtable discussions, the annual mini-courses and our retreat. Our curriculum strongly emphasizes the development of critical and creative independent thinking, scientific communication skills, and professional/responsible conduct. A significant strength of the program is its outstanding and highly interactive faculty from 11 different departments who are deeply committed to graduate education and to the Program. The recent infusion of new junior and senior faculty has increased the multi-disciplinary aspects of our program, with a greater representation of research with human health relevance, providing new training opportunities in areas such as stem cells, human pathogens, immunity, development, radiation biology, and protein dynamics. Cooperation between our Program and the umbrella recruitment has ensured large, high quality and diverse applicant pools and students admitted. The training success of our program is evident in the high quality postdoctoral, faculty and industry positions obtained by our students. Given the strengthened recruitment programs and our demonstrated ability to train high quality students, we are requesting an increase in student positions to be supported by this training grant from 5 to 6/yr.
The future of biomedical and molecular biological research in the U.S. is dependent on the training of high quality, passionate PhD scientists who have learned to think critically and independently. Our program strongly fosters the development of critically minded, dedicated researchers who can communicate effectively and who appreciate the human health implications of their studies.
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