Clinician Scientist Fellowship Programme Overview
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About the programme
In September 2007, the Higher Education Authority awarded funding under the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (Cycle 4) for a Clinician Scientist Fellowship Programme (CSFP) in translational medical research to be coordinated by Molecular Medicine Ireland. Molecular Medicine Ireland is a not-for-profit company being established by the National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG), the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI), Trinity College Dublin (TCD), University College Cork (UCC), and University College Dublin (UCD), building and expanding on the success of the Dublin Molecular Medicine Centre. The objective of the CSFP is to train the next generation of clinician scientists (academic medical leaders) with the unique and specialised knowledge essential to fulfil Ireland's research needs in translation medicine.
This training programme transcends institutional boundaries to give Fellows unparalleled access to the top biomedical researchers in the country and to state-of-the-art basic and clinical research facilities. The aim is to educate biomedical investigators who, motivated by the intellectual challenge of understanding disease at the molecular level, will lead the quest for new therapeutic strategies. The programme is to provide a systematic way to train this essential group of clinician researchers through a structured PhD programme for medical graduates of three years in length, with the majority beginning their Fellowships in July 2008.
In November 2007 MMI issued the first call for expressions of interest in the programme which resulted in 51 full applications. Short-listed candidates were interviewed by a selection panel. More details >>
19 MMI Clinician Scientist Fellowships were awarded in this round. More details >>
A second call for the programme was issued in September 2008 which resulted in the award of three Clinician Scientist Fellowships In December 2008 . More details>>
The Fellows, based at University College Cork, will begin their studies either in January 2009 or July 2009. More details >>
National Structured Training
The programme consists of a three year PhD and a shared curriculum designed to assist the Fellows in making the transition from the clinic to the bench and in developing their careers as clinician scientists.
The Fellows will come together for part of their training, developing their experience beyond any single laboratory or institution. This national element to the Clinician Scientist Fellowship Programme, coordinated by the Molecular Medicine Ireland Directorate, comprises a structured taught course curriculum, delivered by experts in biomedical research and also providing important ancillary professional skills. These courses are to be complemented by annual meeting of Fellows and their supervisors that enable review of progress of individuals and the programme as a whole, as well as social networking. The programme is being developed by an Education Committee that includes representatives from each institution. More details >>
The Clinician Scientist Fellowship programme was launched by Mary Hanafin TD, Minister for Education and Science, at the official launch of Molecular Medicine Ireland at the Royal College of Physicians in Ireland on 17 April 2008.
Speaking at the launch, Dr Ruth Barrington, Chief Executive of Molecular Medicine Ireland, said that MMI had taken the initiative, with its member institutions, to train tomorrow's leaders in health research.
Mary Hanafin TD, Minister for Education and Science, said that it is most encouraging that so many medical graduates are interested in undertaking PhDs to deepen their knowledge of the science underlying medicine. ‘Increasing the number of people with PhDs and encouraging graduates to undertake PhDs in strategic areas such as health research, are vital for the next phase of our economic and social development’ Minister Hanafin said.