Research Education and Careers in Health (REACH)

Program Structure


Curriculum Overview


Each fellow will develop a Mentoring Committee that will include UIC faculty with a demonstrated commitment to mentoring. These mentors will provide curricular, methodological, scientific, and career guidance for the scholar. In consultation with the Mentoring Committee, scholars will develop a detailed individual career development plan. The plan, which will be reviewed regularly, will serve as a guide to ensure that the scholar will have the skills and knowledge required to succeed in a career in clinical and translational research.

All scholars will engage in mentored research, and applicants must propose a specific research plan. Research experience may be gained in a range of settings, depending on whether the research is clinical or community-based. The program plan must specify the research questions, study approach, the expected outcomes of the research (e.g., publications, preliminary data, etc.), and timeline. The research plan should follow the NIH guidelines for a K award or R21 (i.e., 6 page limit plus specific aims page).

Scholars will be assisted in gaining all of the skills needed to secure external funding and are expected to make progress towards an application for extramural funding such as a K award, (e.g., K08 or K23), R03, R21, R01, or participation on a Center or Program Project grant. Ideally, by the end of one year, Scholars will generate and submit a research proposal to the NIH or another competitive extramural funding agency.

The Scholar will be encouraged to meet with members of their mentoring committee regularly, e.g., on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to assure that they receive ongoing career guidance. Scholars will also be expected to participate in career development workshops as offered by the CCTS and other organizations. An annual assessment of progress, completed by both the scholar and the primary mentor, is also required.

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