The IMMERSE in CER (Innovative Mentoring and MPH Education in Research and Scientific Excellence in Comparative Effectiveness Research) Program will provide training and mentoring in skills essential to conducting comparative effectiveness research (CER), enhancing the career development of faculty from diverse disciplines and at multiple career levels. Program participants will receive excellent career mentoring, and will also gain expertise in advanced CER methods and experimental approaches that will allow them to compete more effectively for external funding in the biomedical, clinical, behavioral, and social sciences. Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) is very well-positioned to launch a training and mentoring program in CER for junior and mid-level faculty for a number of reasons. First, CUMC has a strong cohort of well-funded, highly regarded senor faculty engaged in CER to serve as senior mentors. Second, we have a CTSA award which enables us to bring together faculty from diverse disciplines through myriad research and training initiatives;and which also provides substantial infrastructure to support new training programs. Third, we have ample experience in running training and mentoring programs (e.g., we led a K30 award from 1999-2006, a K12 award from 2002-2006, and now lead a CTSA that subsumes both of these efforts and adds new initiatives). Fourth, the Mailman School of Public Health already offers an MPH track in Effectiveness and Outcomes Research (EOR) that is ideal for this effort. Finally, many of our faculty are at the forefront of the national CTSA consortium activities to identify and promote best practices in mentoring. This places us in an excellent position to achieve our aims: (i) To build a CER training and mentoring program for junior faculty;(ii) To develop a new seminar series in CER;(iii) To apply to Columbia University and New York State to establish a new certificate program in CER methods;(iv) To extend the program in mid-level faculty, enabling them to re-tool their skills to become senior researchers and experienced mentors in CER;(v) To hone marketing strategies and selection criteria to attract a competitive applicant pool;(vi) To develop and implement methods for tracking and evaluation of program approaches and career advancement among participants;(vii) To implement novel methods of facilitating mentoring and the training of mentors;and (viii) To share information on best practices with CTSA institutions and CER programs nationally . Through these efforts, we are poised to contribute substantially to NIH's goal of building a larger and exceptionally well- prepared CER workforce.
This application seeks support for developing training and mentored career development for investigators, both junior and mid-level faculty, who wish to develop or expand their ability to conduct CER (comparative effectiveness research). If successful, our program will lead to significantly greater efficiency and skills among CER researchers and will attract new researchers into this field to enhance the quality of the nation's health.
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