The major goal of the UAB Public Health/Biomedical Research Training Program (UAB MHRT) is to train and promote the professional development and participation of underrepresented minority students in biomedical and behavioral research both in the U.S. and abroad. This will contribute to the cadre of researchers engaged in reducing health disparities in populations. The program will recruit and train 5 undergraduate (juniors and seniors), 3 masters (research degree) and 2 PhD students annually for five years. Each trainee will be matched with a research project at UAB or at a collaborative site in one of the four countries: Institute for Nutrition of Central America and Panama (INCAP), Guatemala City, Guatemala; Western Regional Health Authority, Ministry of Health, Jamaica; Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia (UPCH) Lima, Peru and the Nepal Fertility and Care Center, Kathmandu Nepal. Trainees going to a foreign site will receive pre-departure training and post-training follow-up from UAB Faculty Mentors. Pre-departure training will include training in research ethics, cultural orientation and scientific methods such as experimental design, data collection and analysis and use of data software. UAB masters and doctoral students will receive training in research ethics, scientific methods, experimental design, data collection and analysis and will be closely guided by a UAB mentor. Research areas include infectious diseases (HIV, STIs, TB, HPV), maternal and child health, nutrition, chronic and cardio-metabolic diseases (diabetes, hypertension, cancer), and health care service delivery. Each trainee will perform research and collect and manage data under the guidance of one or more UAB mentor(s) for students conducting research in the U.S., and a UAB and a Foreign Mentor for students conducting research at a foreign site. Trainees are required to write a final paper based on their project data under guidance from the UAB and foreign mentors that can be submitted for presentation at a national or international conference and for publication. The program is budgeted to cover travel, living and research expenses for trainees as applicable, and provide each trainee with a monthly stipend based on the NRSA levels. UAB Faculty Mentors may travel to the foreign site annually, and two Foreign Mentors may visit UAB for collaborative work annually. The program will be evaluated annually for achievement of the specific objectives and overall effectiveness.
The purpose of the application is to train undergraduate, masters and doctoral underrepresented minority students in biomedical and behavioral research in the U.S. or abroad annually. This will increase the number of proficiently trained researchers who understand health disparities populations and contribute to reducing and ultimately eliminating health disparities among racial and ethnic minority groups in the U.S. and abroad.
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