The overall objective of this program is to extend the pipeline for training in aging research to predoctoral professional students. This T35 will utilize the capabilities of faculty mentors in our existing T32 training programs for postdoctoral and graduate students. Predoctoral professional students from UMB's schools of medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and nursing and the physical therapy doctorate program and nearby professional schools will conduct research in multiple areas of aging research that include areas of clinical, epidemiological, basic-biomedical, mental health, legal-ethical, health services and population-based research in aging. The unique specific aims of this training program are to: 1) bring together a critical mass of predoctoral professional students;2) provide research training and engender an interest in academic careers in aging research;3) recruit underrepresented minority students from UMB and nearby historically black medical schools to aging research;4) ensure that women are encouraged to participate by engaging AMWA and other women's professional organizations;5) encourage professional students to enter one of several joint masters/doctoral programs at UMB;and 6) to engage all health professional students during the academic year via the Geriatrics Interest Group to provide ongoing programs in translational research related to aging. Students will conduct clinical, epidemiological, basic-biomedical, mental health, legal-ethical, health services and population-based research in aging. These areas involve: 1) exercise rehabilitation research in functionally limited older patients;2) research in hip fracture recovery;3) prevention of coronary artery disease through exercise, nutrition and behavior modification in high risk older veterans and the tertiary rehabilitation of older veterans with stroke;and 4) epidemiologic research in residential, long-term care and assisted-living. This predoctoral, professional student program will occur over the summer months (June-Aug) with an expected 20 students each summer, most of whom who have already gained some research experience elsewhere. A minimum 'B'in all course work will be required.
The aging of the US population necessitates increased research on diseases and conditions that affect older adults as reflected in NIH's Healthy People program which goal is to increase quality and years of healthy life. To increase the number of scientific investigators, students must be made of aware of the need for such research and training. This summer research program provides that exposure when critical decisions about future professional goals are most immediate.
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