A series of five conferences are proposed that will address the national need for inclusive basic, translational, and clinical scientists by providing an opportunity for young veterinary scholars to meet, interact, exchange information, and gain an understanding of the many ways through which they can become significant contributors to our biomedical enterprise. These conferences will continue the excellent trajectory set forth by previous meetings. The NIH-Merial Veterinary Scholar Symposium has become the capstone event for the veterinary scholars engaged in summer research programs across the nation, showcasing the students' work through poster sessions, enabling interactions with peers and trainees a few steps ahead of them, as well as with outstanding scientists from a variety of backgrounds who make presentations on areas of broad significance to both animal and human health, and in health disparities. Advanced clinical and basic science training opportunities are showcased, with directors of programs in attendance. Inclusiveness is a high priority and is addressed in a number of ways, including enabling underrepresented DVM students as well as undergraduates aspiring to veterinary/ human medical carriers in pipeline research programs to attend the Symposium, featuring aspirational peers and role models. In addition to formal opportunities, such as the poster sessions and discussion during the scientific sessions, lunch hours and evening social programs are designed to enable networking and interactions among all. Combined degree students are also invited to the Symposium, where they participate in all sessions, present posters and have networking opportunities. The Symposium also serves as an opportunity for training program directors to share best practices, discuss and address key issues in clinician scientist training in depth in a special colloquium. The annual meeting of the directors of NIH T-32 and T35 training programs with NIH program officers is also scheduled during the Symposium. All events are all planned in well-equipped facilities, with consideration of accessibility and other special needs such as those of the hearing impaired, and child-care. The conference sites span the nation and are hosted by outstanding scientists committed to training the next generation of translational and clinical scientists.
Veterinary scientists play a major role in improving public health by enhancing studies that translate findings from research to clinical practice in both prevention and treatment of diseases. In addition, they serve as the best mediators of practices that prevent infectious diseases that affect both animals and humans. A series of five conferences is proposed that will address the national need for an inclusive task force of basic, translational, and clinical scientists by providing an opportunity for young veterinary scholars to meet, interact, exchange information, learn from an outstanding set of professionals, form fruitful networks, and gain an understanding of the many ways through which they can become significant contributors to biomedical advances.