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  1. 1. An interdisciplinary graduate program to train students in integrative neurobiology who will be among the leaders in the next generation of neuroscientists
  2. 2. The Neuroscience Training ProgramThe Neuroscience Training Program  Founded in 1971  More than 90 faculty in 23 departments and 5 schools  Over 160 applications received each year  51 current students 99 Ph.D. degrees granted and over 90% of graduates remain in the biomedical sciences Continuously-funded NIH Training Grant for over 25 years
  3. 3. Research StrengthsResearch Strengths  Neural Circuits  Membrane Excitability & Synaptic Transmission  Neurobiology of Disease  Perception & Movement  Behavior, Cognition, & Emotion  Development, Plasticity, & Repair  Molecular Neuroscience Neuroscience Training Program
  4. 4. Neuroscience Training Program Organization and Governance • Administered through Medical School • In addition to NIH grant, support from Medical and Graduate Schools • Chair, administrative staff, steering committee (10 faculty, 2 students) • Other standing committees: - student advisory, admissions and recruitment, minority affairs, ethics, seminar topics (5-6 faculty, 1 student rep.)
  5. 5. Neuroscience Training Program Student Training • Introduction to the Program (Student advisory committee, chalk talks, social events) • Complete 3 laboratory rotations • Complete introductory neuroscience courses (cellular, molecular & systems neuroscience) • Choose thesis advisor and thesis committee• Complete Professional Development seminar during first year • Neuroscience seminar and subgroups • Ethics seminar (all first, third year and training grant students) • Advanced coursework (1 systems,
  6. 6. Neuroscience Training Program Student Training-cont. Major Benchmarks • Preliminary examination - Outside area paper - Thesis proposal • Dissertation (written and oral defense) Evaluation of Progress Thesis committee meets with student once/semester pre-dissertator status, once/year post-dissertator status.
  7. 7. Neuroscience Training Program CID Leadership Committee Vaishali Bakshi, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Psychiatry Mary Behan, Ph.D. Professor of Comparative Biosciences Cindy Czajkowski, Ph.D. Associate Professor of Physiology Timothy Gomez, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Anatomy Stephen Johnson, M.D., Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Comparative Biosciences Ron Kalil, Ph.D. Professor of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences Ann E. Kelley, Ph.D. Professor of Psychiatry Robert Pearce, M.D., Ph.D. Professor of Anesthesiology STUDENTS: Jason Berndt (4th year) Erin Hanlon (4th year) Rebekah Jakel (3rd year, MD/PhD program) Aaron Nelson (2nd year) Terri Schochet (5th year) FACULTY: EX OFFICIO: Heather Daniels
  8. 8. Neuroscience Training Program Key Ideas 1. Mission and Philosophy of the Neuroscience Training Program 2. Mentoring and the Student-Mentor Relationship 3. Career Development and Educational Initiatives Additional areas of discussion for future consideration: • Improve retention of women in academic tracks • Improve under-represented minority recruiting and enrollment
  9. 9. Neuroscience Training Program Mission and Philosophy • What is the mission of the Neuroscience Training Program? Does the faculty have a shared idea of the mission and goals of the Neuroscience Training Program (or not)? Of a typical, ideally prepared student? • Define intellectual, experimental, and communication skills that Program faculty expect students to achieve. Is there a coherent concept of “core expectations” for a typical student finishing the Program? How does this view match with the students view of his/her expectations? • What particular aspects of training makes a successful scientist? Evaluate key elements in multiple areas (curriculum, research, teaching, etc).
  10. 10. Neuroscience Training Program Mission and Philosophy-cont. • Given a common notion of “core expectations,” are benchmarks clearly defined and met - are there effective ways for evaluating progress? • Are there processes/opportunities for faculty “modeling,”e.g. faculty-faculty interactions, effective criticism, grant writing, etc. (“transparency”)
  11. 11. Neuroscience Training Program Mentoring and the Student-Mentor Relationship • Evaluation and selection of faculty mentors • Can we clearly define or describe characteristics of effective mentoring? Is there an ideal blueprint and can it communicated effectively? What is the contribution of the mentor to the instantiation of “habits of mind” and scientific reasoning? • Is communication of faculty expectations and goals to the student effective? • Improve/enhance peer mentoring – new initiatives
  12. 12. Neuroscience Training Program Career Development and Educational Initiatives • Innovative dual degree programs (e.g. masters in science journalism, public policy combined with neuroscience Ph.D.) • Explore opportunities to consider careers other than traditional academic tenure track • Gather and assess information on current and future job market, demographics, etc. How can institutions such as Carnegie, Society for Neuroscience, and ANDP aid in this process? • Interview alumni (particularly recent) • Better incorporation of neuroscience
  13. 13. Neuroscience Training Program Current and Future Plans • Organization over next semester of mini meetings for discussion of CID key ideas • Consider new professional development seminar for senior students • Consider detailed questionnaire for students, faculty and alumni • Develop and launch innovative training opportunities (e.g. M.S. in science journalism)