RETCC Investigations of environmental and health implications of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) require an integration of numerous expertise, including knowledge in multiple scientific disciplines, methodologies in data science, and skills in community engagement. Current pre- and post-doctoral preparations for addressing such complex problems are typically insufficient due to limited training in interdisciplinary research, lack of formal data management and analysis skills, and limited opportunities for real engagement with affected communities. The broad mission of the Research Experience and Training Coordination Core (RETCC) is to train all the Center's pre- and post-doctoral trainees (10 per year) to be future leaders and outstanding scientists capable of conducting high-impact research, independently and as part of a multidisciplinary team, to solve the PFAS problem and similar complex environmental and health problems. In coordination with the activities of the PFAS research projects, Data Management and Analysis Core (DMAC), Analytical Core (CAPTURE), and Community Engagement Core (CEC), RETCC will develop and implement a comprehensive program for the trainees to become fluent across disciplines, technologies, and communities.
An aim of the program is to provide the trainees with cross-training and fluency across disciplines, technologies, and communities through diverse research experiences, nanocourses to cover the relevant disciplines, data management and analysis modules, multidisciplinary seminars and journal club, and engagement with communities affected by PFAS. The program will also include professional and career development training by creating opportunities to work across disciplines as part of a multidisciplinary team addressing PFAS-related problems and to interact with engineers, epidemiologists, biologists, regulatory policy scientists, and community engagement professionals. An Individual Development Plan will serve as an evaluation and career development tool. This training program will involve authentic learning, focus on real-world projects involving PFAS, build communications skills, and increase fluency across disciplines and integration of the trainees into the team science approach.
RETCC Understanding the environmental and health implications of emerging pollutants require an integration of numerous expertise, including knowledge in multiple scientific disciplines, methodologies in data science, and skills in community engagement. The primary goal of the Research Experience and Training Coordination Core (RETCC) is to train pre- and post-doctoral trainees to become future leaders and scientists capable of investigating and solving such environmental and health problems affecting communities.