The University of Ibadan and its United States partner institutions, Harvard School of Public Health and Northwestern University, propose the continuation of research capacity building of the Medical Education Partnership Initiative Nigeria (MEPIN) with the University of Ibadan MEPI Junior Faculty Research Training for Career Development Program (UI-MEPI-J). This program is designed to increase the capacity to participate in and carry out locally relevant research that contributes to improved human health and to foster the next generation of faculty researchers in Nigeria. Junior faculty members will gain enhanced capabilities in research methodology, research management, bioethics training, mentorship, scientific publication productivity and grant writing. The goal essentially is to enhance individual research capacity through structured training and mentored research programs for junior faculty from three scientific areas that address priority health needs of Nigeria while at the same time build upon the existing research strengths of the University of Ibadan. These three areas include: 1) laboratory and clinical investigation of HIV and its long-term complications; 2) genomics of infectious diseases; and 3) neurologic diseases with an emphasis on stroke and seizure disorders. The objectives of the project are 1) Train Junior faculty College of Medicine, University of Ibadan in the methods of scientific investigation, the art of oral and written communication, interpersonal interactions, legal and ethical aspects of scientific responsibility 2) Provide guidance on planning career pathways and development 3) Engage the University of Ibadan and College of Medicine leaderships to support and strengthen research administration and support structures, and promote effective leadership for research and 4) Institutionalize research training and culture in the University. The objectives will be accomplished by institutional level research training for junior faculty through courses and workshops, mentored research training experiences with dual Nigeria and United States mentors, short term focused research training experiences in the United States partner institutions, participation in international scientific meetings and conferences. Course curricula that will include structured and tailored training in research methods and scientific investigation responsible conduct of research and research ethics, communication of scientific findings, personal interaction, career development, scientific responsibility, integrity, health disparity an gender issues in research will be produced and implemented. The opportunity will be used to build community of scholars and role models in high output research at the University of Ibadan and networking with related local and international organizations and support each trainee to compete for relevant institutional, national and international funding opportunities. It is propose that 18 junior faculty will receive intensive mentored research training under this program. Additionally, the overall research culture will be expanded and strengthened by development of training programs that will prepare faculty and postgraduate students in the roles and responsibilities of being a researcher and leading critical research projects and proposals throughout the grant process. The outcome will be improved knowledge and skills in the performance of the next generation of research faculty in high quality research and appropriate career development for junior faculty to become the next generation of leaders in health research. This new generation of research faculty will be globally competitive and will be trained to provide solutions to global health needs through high quality research designed, carried out and implemented in Nigeria.
Nigeria has the second largest number of people with HIV, fourth in tuberculosis and the highest rate of malaria in the world a high rate of communicable diseases including stroke and epilepsy. The original MEPIN has contributed greatly to improved faculty research capacity in Nigeria. This project will foster development of research capacity and career of the next generation of researchers at the University of Ibadan to enhance their research output for improved human health.
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