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NINDS/ANA Career Development Symposium


NINDS/ANA Career Development Symposium
October 12-13, 2002
Marriott Marquis Hotel
New York, NY

Introduction

The initiative is part of the broader NINDS Research Training Program for Physician Scientists. The central goal of the training program is to support the development of physician research manpower. The purpose of this symposium was to provide the K08 and K23 grantees with essential tools to enhance in their ability to write successful grant proposals and to obtain grant funding from NIH and other institutions. This symposium was designed for 2nd and 4th year K08 and K23 recipients and was be chaired by senior neurologists and neuroscientists who had demonstrated success in scientific grant writing and accomplishments. In addition, senior staff from the NINDS provided advice concerning the mechanisms involved in grant submission and evaluation.

Background

In FY 2001, NINDS launched a series of programs to train physician-scientists. The program was initiated under the direction of Dr. Gerry Fischbach (then Director of NINDS) and was overseen by Dr. Dennis Landis, Chair, Department of Neurology, Case Western Reserve University, and NINDS staff. The central goal of the training program is to support the development of physician research manpower, to: (1) encourage the interest of potential physician scientists early in their education, (2) offset the effect of academic debt upon decisions by physicians about research careers, (3) Accelerate entry to independent research, (4) Encourage translational research, and (5) Foster research training by especially competent laboratories. As a part of this overall endeavor, NINDS invited current K08 and K23 awardees to attend a three-day mentoring meeting in association with the annual meeting of the American Neurological Association (ANA). Attendees included K08 and K23 recipients in their 02 or 04 year, mentors chosen by the ANA leadership, the ANA president and president elect, the AUPN president, and members of the Training and Career Development Subcommittee committee of NINDS Council. Also attending from NINDS were Dr. Audrey Penn, Dr. Connie Atwell, Dr. Henry Khachaturian, Dr. Alan Willard, and Dr. Story Landis.

Discussion

All participants submitted an abstract of their work. All abstracts were published and distributed at the meeting. Second year recipients described their research proposal and directions in their abstract. Fourth year recipients outlined their accomplishments and included in their abstracts a brief statement of their plans for future directions. Twelve fourth-year recipients presented a ten-minute oral presentation of their work during the session on Saturday morning.

The afternoon consisted of small groups of awardees paired with one or two senior scientists for a 1.5-hour review of the experiences of the awardees, including mentoring, directions for research, adequacy of support from mentors, departments or institutions, and other issues. In concurrent sessions, senior staff from the NINDS and senior investigators were available to talk to small groups and answer questions in regard to details of grant submission, techniques, tricks and important elements in grant writing that are essential to favorable study section review (and common pitfalls to avoid), and the elements that go into the preparation of successful and unsuccessful grants.

Dinner that evening will be followed by a talk from a prominent neuroscientist who offered insights into her success.

The meeting ended with a brief breakfast session to review the content of the meeting and its usefulness to the attendees with the explicit purpose of obtaining suggestions for future meetings.

Recommendations/Conclusions

The meeting provided the K08 and K23 grantees with valuable information and insight into the grant process in addition to allowing them to meet and talk with other K08 and K23 recipients and prominent senior scientists.

Last updated April 8, 2011