The graduate-level training program ?Interinstitutional Program in Cell & Molecular Biology? addresses the demands of changing job prospects, an urgent need to increase diversity in the scientific community, and the importance of enhancing ethics and rigor in research. The program unites three internationally recognized research and educational entities, the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, and Carnegie-Mellon University, all in close proximity within one of America?s most livable cities. The merger of these distinct entities capitalizes on pre-existing connections between these groups, such as the Pittsburgh- area membrane trafficking group, which is now in its 18th year of organizing annual meetings and courses. The merger of the three groups also broadens training potential, particularly with respect to available expertise and infrastructure, and emphasizes the importance of scientific collaboration to the trainees. Indeed, to capitalize on these strengths, each trainee will have a co-mentor from one of the other institutions. The administrations at each institution are fully committed to the research plan, and Faculty in the program were chosen based on past training outcomes or (for younger Faculty) future potential. The Faculty encompass diverse areas of expertise in basic cell and molecular biology, professional ranks and backgrounds, and will participate in robust mentor training, which strengthens their ability to develop personalized training programs and to mentor trainees both daily and at twice-yearly thesis meetings. The result will be a personalized and supportive training plan that is rigorously monitored using objective assessment tools. Faculty labs within the program attract outstanding and diverse trainees with career goals that span a wide spectrum. Dual mentorship brings a breadth of scientific approaches and an increased base of professional contacts. Thanks to culling from the best of the participating departments, trainees will attend outstanding courses and seminars that collectively hone critical thinking, enable broad knowledge, introduce cutting-edge technologies, emphasize scientific ethics and rigor and reproducibility, and highlight career and professional development opportunities. Additionally, instruction and practice in communication skills, including participation in outreach and classroom teaching, will be an integral feature of the program. In sum, the program will recruit and retain a diverse trainee cohort that will be provided with a tailored and collaboration-focused pathway, preparing them for entry into a range of career paths open to PhD recipients in cell and molecular biology.

Public Health Relevance

The graduate-level ?Interinstitutional Program in Cell and Molecular Biology? will focus on training in the research areas vital for understanding the basic mechanisms of human disease and preparing trainees to a variety of conventional and unconventional career tracks related to health sciences. The Program will focus on an urgent need to increase diversity in the scientific community, and the importance of enhancing ethics and rigor in research.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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NIGMS Initial Review Group (TWD)
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Gindhart, Joseph G
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University of Pittsburgh
Anatomy/Cell Biology
Schools of Medicine
United States
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