The University of Pittsburgh Center for Sleep and Circadian Science (CSCS) is dedicated to advancing the scientific understanding of sleep and circadian rhythms across the translational spectrum: from their genetic and molecular determinants, to their shaping by cultural and social forces, to their impact on health and functioning. As one of the world?s leading centers for training next-generation sleep and circadian scientists, the CSCS is committed to training diverse individuals across the educational pipeline, including undergraduate students, graduate and medical students, and post-doctoral fellows and residents, as well as junior faculty. Trainees and faculty at other institutions have expressed great interest in obtaining the didactic and hands-on training opportunities available to CSCS trainees and junior faculty. To address this unmet training need, we will hold a two-part Sleep and Circadian Science Workshop in Indispensable Methods (SWIM) in the summer and fall of 2020. The goal of these meetings is to extend the depth and breadth of the fields of sleep and circadian science by creating a more diverse and inclusive workforce. We will accomplish this goal in three important ways: (1) We will increase the racial/ethnicity, socioeconomic, health, and gender/sexual diversity of individuals with training in sleep and circadian science and related leadership skills. (2) We will extend the reach of sleep and circadian science training to individuals who do not have the opportunity to obtain this training at their home institutions, including the development of key leadership skills. (3) We will create a cohort of young sleep and circadian scientists who know and can rely on each other as they develop their independent research careers. Due to travel restrictions associated with the Covid-19 pandemic, the virtual Summer SWIM (August 10-14, 2020) will feature didactic and Meet-the-Expert sessions on established and emerging measures and methods critical to the advancement of sleep and circadian science. The in-person Fall SWIM (November 4-6, 2020) will feature small, single track sessions focused on career development, fostering a diverse and inclusive workforce, and leadership excellence. Participants will network with national/international leaders in sleep and circadian science, as well as a national cohort of early career scientists with whom they can develop professional connections and support systems. Fall SWIM participants will additionally participate in the annual Sleep and Circadian Science Research Day (Nov. 5) and a StoryCorps (Smithsonian Folkways) recording of their experiences as emerging sleep and circadian scientists. A total of 56 individuals applied for the Summer SWIM meeting; 78.5% of applicants were female, 40% were from minority racial/ethnic groups, and a majority self- identified as members of groups under-represented in science (e.g., minority groups related to race/ethnicity, socioeconomic and health status, and gender/sexual diversity). The proposed R13 will provide travel support for a diverse and inclusive group of 20 trainees and junior faculty to participate in the Fall SWIM meeting, through Sleep and Circadian Science Scholar Travel Awards.
The University of Pittsburgh will hold a two-part Sleep and Circadian Science Workshop in Indispensable Methods (SWIM) program in the summer and fall of 2020 to address unmet training and public health needs. Due to travel restrictions associated with the Covid-19 pandemic, the Summer SWIM program will be virtual; the in-person Fall SWIM meeting will be held at the University of Pittsburgh. This R13 Conference Grant proposes support for a diverse and inclusive group of 20 trainees and junior faculty to attend the in-person Fall SWIM meeting.