Physician-Scientist Experience: Introducing Medical Students to a Translational Career Path

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The Physician-Scientist (P-S) Experience sponsored by OCTRI and the Human Investigation Program (HIP) provides research training for medical students who are interested in research careers in clinical and translational science. Students accepted into this experience participate in extended research activities while in medical school with a 5-month or year-out option.  The experience fulfills the research requirement of the scholarly project for medical students. Students in the year-out option must complete a Master of Clinical Research degree program during this year-out.

Physician-Scientist Experience objectives

  • Introduce medical students to the physician-scientist career path. 
  • Train students in scientific inquiry and connect the importance of research to clinical medicine.
  • Provide mentored research experience to explore translational medicine as a career choice.

Eligibility

Information sessions are scheduled each October. OHSU medical students in good academic standing are eligible to apply.  Applications open in November and are due early January.  Applicants are selected based on demonstrated interest in an in-depth research experience and are notified of acceptance to program by end of January.  

Program information and details

  • Provides research opportunities in a wide variety of research areas, including molecular medicine, medical genetics, cancer biology, epidemiology, health services research, clinical research, clinical trials, as well as in other disciplines.
  • Offers research experience under the mentorship of a physician-scientist, in the laboratory or in clinical  and translational research. 
  • Opportunity to obtain a Master of Clinical Research degree with coursework in research design, biostatistics, research ethics, translational research and academic leadership.  This is required for students taking a year-out experience. 
  • Opportunities to apply for an NIH–supported research experience for year-out, supported by an NRSA stipend.  Learn more about the OSLER TL1 Program.
  • Participation in the physician-scientist seminar and journal club during pre-clinical years and year-out.
     

Requirements for both options

All participants attend a physician-scientist seminar series and journal club during their preclinical years starting in winter of first year medical school.  Sessions are scheduled on Mondays, 5:30 to 6:30 pm approximately twice a month.

Information and requirements for 5-month research option

Participants in the 5-month research option:    

  • Earn 18 medical school credits, 6 credits for scholarly project course work and 12 applied as non-clinical credits towards graduation.
  • Complete the MD program within the 4 year medical curriculum.  
  • May choose to schedule contiguous research block in second or third year of MD program after completion of USMILE step 1.
  • MS2 - Block 1-5 (February - July), after USMLE Step 1 exams and Transition to Clinical Experience course
  • MS 3 - Block 13-17 (April – August), after core clinical experiences
  • Students must be in good academic standing. Due to difficulty with schedules, delaying Step 1 exam will require withdrawal from the P-S experience.
  • Students must enroll in UME scholarly projects proposal course and present their research at the scholarly projects capstone event.
     

Information and requirements for year-out research option

Participants in the year-out research option:   

  • Enroll in a year-long accelerated Master of Clinical Research degree program while taking a leave of absence (LOA) from the MD program.
  • Students must be in good academic standing. Due to difficulty with schedules, delaying Step 1 exam will require withdrawing from the P-S experience.
  • Graduate with a combined MD/MCR degree five years after entry into MD program.
  • May choose to schedule the year out after core clinical rotations in second or third year of MD curriculum.
  • Additional participation in a rotation in the Clinical and Translational Research Center after returning the the MD curriculum. 
  • Students selected for year-out are not required to enroll in UME scholarly projects proposal course but must still present their research at the scholarly projects capstone event.
     

Peter Mayinger, Ph.D.
P-S Experience Director
Learn more about Dr. Mayinger.

Cynthia Morris, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Senior Associate Director, OCTRI
Program Director, Translational Workforce Development
Co-Director, KL2 & TL1 Programs
Learn more about Dr. Morris.

David H. Ellison, M.D., FASN, FAHA 
Director, OCTRI
Learn more about Dr. Ellison.

Allison Fryer, Ph.D. 
TL1 Program Director 
Learn more about Dr. Fryer.

David Jacoby, M.D.
KL2 Program Director
Learn more about Dr. Jacoby.

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Reach out to us
If you have questions about the P-S Experience, we'd like to hear from you. 

Peter Mayinger, Ph.D.
P-S Experience Director
mayinger@ohsu.edu

Karen McCracken, B.A., B.S.N.
OCTRI Education Program Coordinator
mccracke@ohsu.edu

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Interested in applying?

Deadline: January 8

Apply Now

Human Investigations Program

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