Initiative for Maximizing Student Development in Translational Medicine Program

Offering translational medicine research training and professional development for students from underrepresented populations pursing a Ph.D. from qualifying College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences programs, this fellowship program aims to increase the number of students from underrepresented groups in the biomedical sciences successfully completing their Ph.D.

Fellows will have full support for 3 years, attending program specific activities/seminars while concurrently fulfilling the requirements for the Ph.D. program to which the student originally applied. The fellowship is considered an addition, not replacement for a qualifying Ph.D. program.

Fellows will receive:

  • Rigorous training in the application of the scientific method to a defined research project, emphasizing translation of basic research to veterinary and human medicine
  • Experience in interdisciplinary collaboration and communication
  • Extensive support for academics, research, career planning, and professional development

Learn about our current program participants.

Program activities

year one (seed year)

Year one begins June 1, 2023 with a summer orientation focused on social and professional development activities. Once fellows meet potential mentors and view potential laboratories, they will begin their first 8-week laboratory rotation (subsequent rotations will occur during the fall and spring semesters). Fellows are required to select a faculty advisor by the end of their first year. Other first-year activities include peer mentoring, program specific coursework, and participation in social support groups.

year two (growth year)

During the second year of the training program, fellows will form their dissertation committee, create their individual development plan, take further coursework, and participate in talks and other activities with the Translational Medicine Institute.

year three (bloom year)

Year three will focus on providing students with professional development, including mentorship training. Fellows will continue learning about translational medicine and progressing through their Ph.D. To ensure they remain fully funded when they exit the program, fellows will be guided through applying for grants and other support programs.

In year three and beyond, fellows are expected to devote the majority of their time to their dissertation research. They will participate in research team mentoring and other team science workshops. Finally, they will complete their preliminary exam and prepare for their dissertations.


Applicants must be entering Ph.D. students in a qualifying program who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents and have been shown to be underrepresented nationally in health-related sciences (i.e. individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, and individuals from disadvantaged and/or low socioeconomic backgrounds). Students must be able to start the program June 1.

Qualifying Ph.D. programs


Fellows receive 3 years of financial support, including a stipend, tuition and fees, and funds to travel to scientific meetings. Additional support beyond year three will come from a variety of resources including research assistantships, teaching assistantships, or other forms of graduate support, provided satisfactory progress is being made toward earning the Ph.D.

Application information

2023 Application Timeline

Application opens
Application closes
Finalist interviews
Approximate date to make offers


Vanessa Selwyn, Ph.D.

Program Coordinator