The MARC U*STAR program at U.T. El Paso will continue to seek out and nurture young minority students who possess the capacity to enter into the highest level of biomedical research career activity within the USA. Each student will participate in the courses needed for his/her discipline (in our case, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics) plus a series of mandatory on-campus activities not standard for other students: a vigorous research experience culminating in the oral defense of a written Honors Undergraduate Thesis;a Philosophy Department Bioethics course and an Introduction to Research course. The latter course, in which the students are enrolled each semester, has many components (workshops, seminar, presentations) aimed at producing a thoughtful ethical scientist with a broad viewpoint outside of his specialty, and a clearly defined capacity to communicate. Off-campus research experiences will also be strongly encouraged. Each student will be expected to present their research data at national meetings in addition to participation in the regularly scheduled MARC meetings/seminars/symposia. An evaluation process is included in the program run by a professional evaluation group associated with the Center for Institutional Evaluation Research Planning at U. T. El Paso, under the Direction of Dr. Denise Carrejo. The proposal contains a significant effort to increase the impact of the MARC U-STAR program on the campus. This involves new short courses (Introduction to Bioinformatics and Science Entrepreneurship), which will be initially aimed at MARC students and be open to others (RISE, etc) on a limited basis. After the granting period, both courses are expected to become regularly taught as standard classes for the University Community and be self standing. Also a series of videos of both student and visiting scientist seminars will be produced to become a resource library for the academic community and illustrate the state of knowledge and demonstrate how our underrepresented minority UG scholars can make an impact.
We propose a biomedicaly related research training program to underrepresented honors students and propel them into health related research careers via the Ph.D. degree. Together with an individual research project and mentor, a program of special courses in bioethics, scientific entrepreneurship and research topics will be provided along with special summer research internships to accomplish this goal.
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