The Vanderbilt University (VU) Center for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia (CIDRZ) AITRP, formerly the VU-University of Alabama at Birmingham AITRP, seeks renewal of its grant, now in its tenth year due to an NIH-initiated one-year extension. We contribute research training to both institutional and individual biomedical and behavioral research capacities focused on HIV-related research in both prevention and care. The VU-CIDRZ training partnership with our international collaborators is designed to train foreign scientists and key research support staff to conduct independent research and training in their home countries, as well as perform at an internationally credible level in collaborations with local and foreign scientists. We now seek to renew our AITRP with a continued focus on Zambia (since 1998), Pakistan (since 1994), India (since 2000), China (since 2000), and our newest partnership in Mozambique (VU training partnership since 2006 and developmental AITRP engagement since 2007). We have completed our older training commitments in Mongolia, Jamaica, and Russia and will complete our training commitments for Bangladesh upon the graduation of a current doctoral training (anticipated in 2011). We have restricted our AITRP training partnerships to five focus cities in order not to dilute our impact to where we have funded overseas research and strong research training partners. At the same time, we have leveraged support in each of the five venues such that our AITRP resources will go much further than permitted by the grant's funding alone. We will continue to provide a diverse portfolio of long, medium, and short-term training options. To date 58 trainees have received graduate degrees, 97% of whom have returned to work in their home countries, 8 are currently in degree programs and over 2,000 have been trained through our in-country advanced short- courses. We believe VU remains an ideal university partner for this initiative for several significant reasons.The migration of the training program to VU offers the opportunity for trainees to receive the absolute highest quality of graduate training and exposure to innovative HIV/AIDS/STD/TB related research, resources, and faculty mentors. The program is uniquely positioned within the infrastructure of the VU Institute for Global Health (VU IGH),directed by Dr. Vermund with its """"""""center-without-walls"""""""" philosophy that nurtures noncompetitive partnerships among and within VU and with partner institutions around the globe. We feel that the innovative features of our renewal and our proven track record address the unmet needs in international AIDS training.
The VU-CIDRZ training partnership with our international collaborators is designed to strengthen both institutional and individual biomedical and behavioral research capacities focused on HIV-related research in both prevention and care in developing countries.
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