The MD/PhD Program at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) was established in 1982 and funded by the NIH in 2010. This is the first competitive renewal for the program. The mission of the UM program is to provide outstanding, aspiring medical scientists with superior scientific and medical training so that they will have productive careers in biomedical research and clinical medicine. The focused goals of the MD/PhD Program are: (1) to recruit a diverse spectrum of students with strong scientific backgrounds and a commitment to clinical care; (2) to provide a rigorous, yet flexible, program that includes training in independent research and clinical practice; and (3) to provide guidance so that students formulate long-term career plans and acquire the scientific and clinical credentials necessary for competitive postgraduate training. Our curriculum consists of very strong preclinical and clinical training, abbreviated graduate classroom studies, MSTP-specific courses designed to integrate medical and scientific knowledge, and flexible reentry from graduate school to medical school. MSTP-specific activities include: (1) Molecules to Medicine Course; (2) Clinical Case Studies Course; (4) Graduate program orientations; (5) Summer Research Symposium; (6) Physician Scientist Seminars; (7) Longitudinal Clinical Rotation during graduate school; (8) MSTP Retreat; and (9) MD/PhD endowed lecture. Our opportunities for dissertation research are extensive and are interdisciplinary by design. Thus, our program ensures the MD/PhD students are not merely MD students with PhD training. During the current funding period, our MSTP has transitioned to new leadership, bringing a fresh perspective and new initiatives to the program. The Program Director (PD), himself a physician- scientist with credentials in research, education and patient care, is joined by an Associate Director (AD) who is an accomplished scientist with experience running a graduate education program. We have established a new program with our sister campus, University of Maryland College Park, to offer a PhD in Bioengineering. Our success during the current funding period can be seen in a 90% increase in applicant numbers, a record incoming class, a zero attrition rate, high publication productivity and excellent residency placements. We plan to build on this success by increasing the size of our program and continuing to develop innovative training and mentoring strategies.
This grant proposal will support the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. The mission of the University of Maryland MSTP is to provide outstanding, aspiring medical scientists with superior scientific and medical training. This training will serve the nation by developing experienced Physician Scientists who can accelerate the progress of biomedical research from the laboratory to the direct benefit of patients.
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