This is a competitive renewal application for the IRACDA New York Consortium for the Advancement of Postdoctoral Scholars (NY-CAPS) program funded in 2012. NY-CAPS is a partnership among four higher education institutions in New York, to address the national need for greater diversity among tenure-track faculty in the biomedical sciences. Our postdoctoral scholars experience comprehensive and balanced training in research, teaching and professional development to pursue highly productive academic careers as scientist-teachers scholars. Our innovative, blended training model exploits over 20+ years of collaborations between a research-intensive institution (Stony Brook University), a comprehensive institution (The City University of New York Brooklyn College), a primarily undergraduate institution (The State University of New York Old Westbury), and a community college (Suffolk County Community College). The considerable strengths of each Consortium institution are leveraged to provide mentored research and pedagogic training and exposure to a diverse range of higher education institutions at which scholars may ultimately pursue academic careers. Measurable outcomes of our current NY-CAPS grant have outpaced our expectations; NY-CAPS is responsible for a 7% increase (7.6% in 2010 to 14.5% in 2015) in the racial/ethnic diversity of our domestic postdoctoral population at SBU since baseline. The NY-CAPS blended training model inspired the postdoctoral training component of the successful Stony Brook NSF AGEP-Transformation grant, which was funded one year later in 2013. These two programs work in concert to further expand the disciplinary diversity of our underrepresented minority, domestic postdoctoral community to include engineers and mathematicians. Our scholars have also published manuscripts in prestigious journals and impressively, five have already secured tenure-track faculty positions at teaching- or research-intensive institutions. The aggressive recruitment plan implemented during Phase I of NY-CAPS has generated a larger pool of outstanding candidates annually than originally expected (40+), with a high proportion of individuals identifying as racial, ethnic or sexual minorities and those with disabilities. Drawing from the sizable applicant pool, we will recruit four scholars per year during Phase II. These scholars will engage in a rigorous three-year training program complementing traditional research training (75% effort) with several modalities for mentored pedagogic training (25% effort). The program will continue to be led by a team that combines a highly accomplished national leader in biomedical research, a PAESMEM award winner honored for his mentoring and teaching activities, and a nationally recognized leader in STEM diversity best practices. The leaders at the Consortium institutions have extensive experience as senior faculty and administrators. These leaders are joined by research and teaching faculty with significant expertise in major biological and biomedical disciplines (biochemistry, chemistry, ecology and evolution, microbiology, neurobiology, pharmacology) across the four institutions. Mentoring teams for each scholar, which proved highly effective in Phase I, will be composed of the Research Mentor, the Teaching Mentor and another Faculty Mentor to guide the formulation of a required Individual Development Plan (IDP) that will help monitor scholar progress throughout their three year appointment. An added value and innovative approach of this renewal application is the modified teaching training component. In Phase II of this project, we will introduce a new blended pedagogy course, where 50% is virtual and taught by STEM Education Solutions? ?Scientist Teaching Science? Course offered also by the New York Academy of Sciences and the other 50% is taught in-person for one-hour-per-week by the Faculty Center/Teaching Learning Technologies and by the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science. Also, in support of transforming the postdoctoral training experience for non-IRACDA scholars at the institution, we propose to introduce a NY-CAPS Associates Program, which will provide financial incentives (funded by Stony Brook University) to four non-IRACDA scholars per year to participate in the NY-CAPS training experience. Our comprehensive evaluation plan will assess our progress in achieving the key desired IRACDA program outcomes: teaching and research skills acquired from baseline, high research productivity, effectiveness of the three-person mentoring team and transformative impact at each Consortium institution as measured by student and faculty feedback and ultimately, by scholar career placement. Stony Brook University's President and Vice President for Research have both pledged significant resources to IRACDA NY-CAPS to demonstrate concrete institutional commitment to the objectives of the program. The three Specific Aims of this renewal application are: 1: Recruit and train 20 IRACDA NY-CAPS Scholars whose goals are to pursue careers as scientist-teacher scholars. 2: Provide a rigorous and productive training regimen for research and teaching scholarship that integrates strong mentoring practices by a team of mentors. 3: Develop a new IRACDA NY-CAPS Associates Program to have broader impact on the way postdoctoral scholars are recruited, trained and integrated into the broader university/college setting and to support appropriate transformative outcomes at the Consortium institutions.

Public Health Relevance

This competitive renewal application will continue to train highly trained scientist scholars from diverse backgrounds who will have a future impact on health care equity, quality, and accessibility for diverse communities. Our new IRACDA NY-CAPS scholars will benefit from a comprehensive research and teacher training program that will make them competitive in the academic job market. In positions as faculty, they will be in the best position to generate new scopes of research and transmit cutting-edge developments to a future generation of diverse students in the biomedical sciences. Ultimately, the NY-CAPS program will help to generate a new and diverse workforce of highly talented Americans that are fully engaged in issues of public's health and this will bring special attention to issues of health disparities in underserved communities.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Physician Scientist Award (Program) (PSA) (K12)
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NIGMS Initial Review Group (TWD)
Program Officer
Falcon-Morales, Edgardo
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State University New York Stony Brook
Schools of Medicine
Stony Brook
United States
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