The purpose of the training program outlined in this renewal application is to provide short-term intensive research experiences to professional veterinary medical students. The short-term goal is to stimulate an interest in the pursuit of hypothesis-based research that examines mechanisms, treatment, and prevention of disease. The long-term goal is to increase the number of veterinary students who embrace research as part of their career, with a focus that ranges from basic science/discovery to translational and epidemiological studies. These individuals fill a unique niche in the biomedical community, combining a comparative medical education with investigatory skills that are essential to advancing human and animal health. The program is based upon a research intensive summer experience that is part of a larger Summer Research Program. First- and second-year veterinary students select mentors from graduate faculty with primary appointments in Ohio State's Colleges of Veterinary Medicine, Medicine and Pharmacy. This assures broad exposure of students to all facets of the health sciences community. Projects are developed in collaboration between student and mentor, assuring the project reflects student interests and ideas. Development of the proposal and preliminary training activities occur prior to summer, and presentation and publication of research results are emphasized in the period following summer. The latter includes an end-of- summer research symposium, where students make oral presentations of research results, and poster/platform presentations at the CVM Research Day the following spring. Participating students are selected from within the OSU CVM community. The most meritorious projects are selected based upon proposals submitted to and ranked by the CVM Council for Research, with final award decisions made by the Executive Steering Committee of the Summer Research Program. This approach maximizes quality of students and projects, with an average of 30 applications for 10 T35 positions. The faculty mentor:student ratio is 3:1, providing a large number of training options that ensures a fit with student interests. We have a formal process for obtaining student feedback and as a result, summer seminars are increasingly focused on career development. As part of this effort, we now provide summer research students the opportunity to engage in a Rainier Scholars Program that positions them for careers in industry. Combined with panel discussions involving graduate students, post docs, faculty and veterinary researchers in government, the exposure to potential research careers is comprehensive. Subsequent pursuit of graduate education is a leading indicator of program success. Of the 60 T35 trainees who have completed their DVM, 48% have or are currently engaged in graduate education, this being a strong foundation for research- oriented careers.

Public Health Relevance

The research experience supported by this training grant will enhance recruitment of DVMs into graduate programs or other research career tracks, thereby addressing the national need for veterinary scientists who are an essential component of our biomedical research force.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Office of The Director, National Institutes of Health (OD)
NRSA Short -Term Research Training (T35)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1)
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Watson, Harold L
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Ohio State University
Veterinary Sciences
Schools of Veterinary Medicine
United States
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Sinnott, D; Torres, K Moreno; Wolfe, B et al. (2016) Detection of Hammondia heydorni DNA in feces collected in and around an Ohio Wildlife Conservation Center. Vet Parasitol Reg Stud Reports 6:31-34