The US population is becoming increasingly diverse, but that is not reflected in the current biomedical research workforce. The National Institutes of Health is concerned by this lack of diversity and has established a variety of supportive mechanisms to ensure that workforce diversity is representative of the diversity in American society. One important NIH diversity initiative is the Postbaccalaureate Research Education Program or PREP. The overall goal of PREP is to develop recent baccalaureate science graduates from diverse backgrounds under-represented in biomedical sciences so that they have the necessary knowledge and skills to pursue PhD or MD-PhD degrees in these fields. Case Western Reserve University was awarded PREP funding beginning in 2007. The program, termed CasePREP, has been notably successful, matriculating 54 Scholars into upper-tier PhD or MD/PhD programs across the nation. The current proposal seeks to continue this program by funding eight Case PREP Scholars each year for an additional 5 years. The key components of CasePREP involve individually tailored graduate coursework, professional credentials enhancement, well-crafted experiential skill development, immersion in the PhD student experience, and extensive exposure to biomedical research. Indeed, Case PREP Scholars complete a one-year apprenticeship in CWRU School of Medicine faculty laboratories located throughout many of our 14 PhD-granting programs. PREP mentor laboratories are well funded, dynamic, and led by experienced mentors with substantial minority training experience. In addition, Case PREP Scholars will complete graduate level coursework, GRE preparation experiences, professional skills development, and other enrichment activities. These core developmental experiences are designed to further strengthen a student's scholarly potential and improve their research skills, ultimately leading to their matriculation into and completion of rigorous biomedical doctoral degree programs across the nation. Important outcome assessments will show improved graduate school application credentials, enhanced research and presentation skills, improved attitudes about research careers, and greater than 75% success rates in PREP Scholar matriculation into PhD programs and completion of the PhD degree, respectively. Importantly, one of the main outcomes is for Case PREP to continue improving diversity in the biomedical PhD programs at CWRU and across the nation.
The overall goal of CasePREP is to develop recent baccalaureate science graduates from diverse backgrounds under-represented in biomedical sciences so that they have the necessary knowledge and skills to pursue PhD or MD-PhD degrees in these fields. CasePREP, has been notably successful in matriculating 54 Scholars into top-tier PhD or MD/PhD programs across the nation. The current proposal seeks to continue this program by funding eight Case PREP Scholars each year for an additional 5 years.!
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