The goal of this Summer Research Training Program is to identify and facilitate the career progression of veterinary students who have the ability and motivation to become research scientists. Nationally, there is a critical shortage of veterinary scientists. To fill this need, it is imperative to stimulate greater interest in research careers among veterinary students. Short-term research training programs, such as the one described in this proposal, are one means of accomplishing this goal. The focus of this training program is translational biomedical research, broadly encompassing the research areas of infectious diseases, reproductive biology, epidemiology, neuroscience, oncology, toxicology, nutrition and behavior. The program faculty includes 32 mentors from 10 different academic departments in 4 colleges. The program is 10 weeks in length and is open to veterinary students who have completed either one or two years in the professional curriculum. Ten trainee positions are available each program year. Trainees are matched with a faculty mentor who shares similar research interests. In collaboration with the faculty mentor, trainees formulate a testable hypothesis, design the experiments, collect and analyze the experimental data, and report the conclusions. Reporting of results includes authoring an abstract that is submitted to a national meeting, preparing a poster presentation of the work, and writing a short manuscript formatted for a scientific journal appropriate for publishing the results. Extensive instruction in the responsible conduct of research is provided through orientation week activities and a weekly seminar series. The seminar series also features presentations that highlight career opportunities available to veterinary scientists. Weekly scientific writing sessions are provided to assist trainees with preparation of the abstract, poster, and manuscript. A mini-symposium at the start of the program introduces trainees to the diversity of biomedical disciplines represented by the program faculty. At the conclusion of the program, trainees participate in an in-house poster session and in the National Veterinary Scholars Symposium.
This program will train veterinary students in biomedical research methods and promote their development as veterinary scientists. Training future generations of veterinary scientists is essential for advancing society's understanding of the biomedical sciences and promoting public health.
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