Since its inception in 2008, the Utah CCTS KL2 Program rationale has been to distinguish itself by providing promising junior faculty researchers with multidimensional mentored research experiences that enable them to develop, demonstrate, and disseminate translational science to advance health. The program draws scholars from the large pool of candidates in the seven Utah CCTS partnering institutions and provides a path to research success. The end result is the creation of a diverse team of scientists who impact local and national healthcare priorities from birth to end of life. Program impact is demonstrated by research productivity where 67% of past scholars have received additional career development awards and collectively have published 317 manuscripts with 7,094 citations (average H-index = 9.8). The objective of the Utah KL2 program for the next five years is to have promising junior faculty members achieve research success. While the typical determinant of research success is attainment of R01 level NIH support, we broaden the definition of K to Research success to include leading a scientific research enterprise of >$200,000 in annual support and conducting research with substantial impact on health and healthcare. We will realize this objective with the following three aims:
Aim 1 : Improve the proportion of KL2 scholars who achieve ?K to R equivalent Success?, including increasing the proportion (from 17% to 50%) who are the PI on an R01 equivalent award within 5 years of completing their mentored training award.
Aim 2 Increase the number of Utah CCTS KL2 Scholars who are underrepresented in medicine (URM).
Aim 3 : Proactively strengthen and expand use of existing clinical and translational science career development opportunities within the Utah CCTS ecosystem and the national CTSA network. Key program design features include the University?s Vice President?s Clinical and Translational science (VPCAT) program. This two year intensive experience provides the curricular and mentoring foundation for KL2 scholars by using the holistic Matrix Mentoring Model, development of an Individual Development Plans (IDP), and training in Management Essentials for Principal Investigators. We will build on these features to accomplish our stated aims by 1) creating an institutional infrastructure specifically designed to support new investigators in pursuit of R01s, 2) implementing targeted recruitment of those underrepresented in medicine beginning at the pre-doctoral level, and 3) expand use of Utah CCTS community outreach resources and augment links with other CTSA programs. The Utah KL2 directors, Steering Committee, and established External Advisory Board will provide guidance for the program as it expands from two to four NCATS supported scholars, with a focus on increasing the diversity of the group. In addition, we will also add the option for a third year of support for scholars for whom the additional funding would be transformative.