The MD/PhD Program at the University of Maryland (UM) School of Medicine was established in 1982 and funded by the NIH in 2010. The mission of our Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) is to train a diverse and creative cadre of physician-scientists who will become leaders in their chosen fields of research, seek new knowledge and apply that knowledge to enhance health. Our objectives are to: bring together the best MD-PhD students and faculty from the UM Baltimore, UM Baltimore County, UM College Park and the NIH to provide integrated training to MD-PhD students committed to pursuing research careers; develop and assess novel approaches to dual-degree training designed to enhance completion rates and decrease time to degrees; recruit and retain underrepresented minority MD-PhD students; and prepare MD-PhD students to become physician-scientists making significant, independent contributions using their dual degree training in academia, government, research institutes and industry consistent with NIH?s emphasis on developing the physician-scientist workforce. Our curriculum consists of very strong preclinical and clinical training, abbreviated graduate didactic studies, MSTP-specific courses designed to integrate medical and scientific knowledge, and flexible reentry from graduate school to medical school. MSTP-specific activities include: Molecules to Medicine journal club; Graduate program orientations; Summer Research Rotations with associated Symposium; Certificate in Methods to Enhance Research Rigor; Physician Scientist Seminars; Clinical Case Studies and Longitudinal Clinical Clerkship during graduate school; annual MSTP Retreat and 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 a new Program Director (PD) bringing a fresh perspective and new initiatives to the program. The PD, a physician-scientist with credentials in research, education and patient care, joins an Associate Director (AD) who is an accomplished scientist with experience running a graduate education program. Our success during the last five years can be seen the quality and diversity of our applicant pool and students, high publication productivity and outstanding residency placements. We plan to build on this success by increasing the size of our overall program and continuing to develop innovative training and mentoring strategies.
This grant award will support the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. The mission of our MSTP is to train a diverse and creative cadre of physician-scientists who will become leaders in their chosen fields of research, develop new knowledge and translate it to enhance clinical practice. This training will serve the nation by developing physician-scientists who can accelerate the progress of biomedical research from the laboratory to the direct benefit of patients.