YCCI provides an educational umbrella for the following programs:
Programs for Medical Students
Medical Scientist Training Program (MD-PhD)
Under the leadership of James Jamieson, MD, PhD, the MSTP Program trains physician-scientists as basic and clinical researchers who can translate research findings into unraveling problems of human pathobiology. Funded continuously for 30 years by the NIGMS, the Program was recently reviewed and renewed for an additional five years. Yale currently receives funding for 46 positions from the NIGMS, while endowed scholarships support three students and YCCI under the CTSA supports two students whose research is directly relevant to clinical medicine.
The Doris Duke Clinical Research Fellowship Program for Medical Students
The DDCRF was established in 2001 with Yale as one of 10 US sites. This program supports medical students doing a 5th year devoted specifically to faculty-mentored clinical research. All students in the DDCF Program present their research at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Annual Meeting and also at YSM’s Annual Student Research Day. Each year approximately 70-80 students apply to this selective program; the acceptance rate is 10-15%. Doris Duke students are eligible for the MD-MHS joint degree program.
Short Term Research Training Grant for Medical Students (T35 HL07649)
This grant from NHLBI is now in its 25th year and supported through 2012. The grant funds short-term (two to three months) research experiences for medical students. Recent follow-up of Yale students supported by this grant has shown that of 259 students who have completed their training, 96 (38%) have been appointed to faculty positions at medical schools. During or shortly after medical school, 142 students have co-authored 376 papers, and all but one student have presented papers or posters at national or regional scientific meetings.
PhD, MHS, MPH and MS for Medical Students
Medical students can enroll in joint MD-PhD, MD-MHS MD-MPH programs or in a one-year MD-MS in Chronic Disease Epidemiology. At any time, YSPH generally has four MD-PhD students and three MD-MPH students. MD-MPH students meet their MPH course requirements during their fourth year and do a thesis that also meets the thesis requirement for the MD degree.
Intensive Pedagogical Experience in Laboratory Research
Taught at the Mt. Desert Island Biological Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine, this course is given each summer for selected first year medical students, with the cost supported entirely by the School of Medicine. It includes four rotations through different faculty-led, hands-on lab experiences including physiological studies of ion transport; gene expression in a heterologous expression system (Xenopus oocytes); studies in isolated epithelia: immunocytochemistry of co-transporters, Western blots, tissue processing, confocal microscopy; and molecular biology of ion channels and transporters in marine species.
Programs for Graduate Students
Yale School of Public Health
This accredited school of public health also functions as a department (Epidemiology and Public Health, or EPH) within the School of Medicine. The School offers MPH, PhD, and MS degrees.
The MPH program produces leaders in public health research and practice. Students receive a broad education in public health and concentrate in one of eight EPH divisions or programs: Biostatistics, Chronic Disease Epidemiology, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Environmental Health Sciences, Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases, Health Policy, Health Management and an Advanced Professional program for students with health-related doctoral degrees. YSPH also offers an interdisciplinary Global Health concentration, which may be combines with any divisional specialization. MPH students are integrally involved in public health practice through formal courses and placements in community-based organizations. YSPH offers joint degree programs with the Schools of Medicine, Nursing, Forestry & Environmental Studies, Management, Law, and Divinity, as well as the Graduate School. MPH graduates go on to MD or PhD programs or to research or public health practice positions in universities, research institutes, hospitals, national and international NGOs, and local, state and national government agencies.
MS in Epidemiology and Public Health, administered through the Graduate School, emphasizes mastery of skills in an individual specialty area within public health. The MS program includes two tracks: Biostatistics and Chronic Disease Epidemiology (CDE). The length of study is two academic years for Biostatistics and one academic year for CDE. All students receive research ethics training in their coursework. Graduates in the Biostatistics track have gone on to university and pharmaceutical company research positions and to PhD programs. Students enrolled in the CDE track have generally been faculty members or postdoctoral fellows seeking the skills necessary to conduct epidemiological research, and return to these positions after graduation. In many cases, students in this track attend on a part-time basis, while maintaining their regular position
The PhD program, established in 1915 and administered through the Graduate School, provides mastery of research tools in a specialty discipline (Biostatistics, Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases, Health Policy and Administration, Chronic Disease Epidemiology, or Environmental Health Sciences). The program involves two years of coursework and two to three years of dissertation research. All students take a course in research ethics. Graduates go on to university faculty and research positions, leadership positions in state health departments, and research positions in federal agencies including NIH and CDC.
Yale School of Nursing
YSN is internationally known for excellence in clinical practice, teaching, and research. It currently ranks 12thin NIH funding among schools of nursing. YSN grants the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree and Post-Masters certificates. In 2006, YSN discontinued its Doctor of Nursing Science program and started a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) program, officially administered by the Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. The MSN program offers nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, and nurse midwifery specialties. The PhD program builds on a long tradition of linking practice and research and emphasizes the preparation of academic nurse faculty prepared to do clinical research. Typically, there are 475 applicants per year for 110 positions in the MSN and PhD programs. YSN has long been known among schools of nursing for its emphasis on clinical research and community outreach. Students strengthen their research networks by volunteering in community agencies and the NIH-funded Centers have active Dissemination Cores that bring YSN’s clinical research findings into the community. YSN students and junior faculty participate in the CTSA-funded YCCI Scholar and TL1 programs.
Yale University’s Department of Biomedical Engineering (BME) was founded in 2003, with a mission of research and education in translational medicine using the quantitative tools and methods of engineering. It is an academic department in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, with an administrative home in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS), and also a basic science department in the School of Medicine. BME is home to 14 faculty members, of whom eight have primary appointments in FAS and six have primary appointments that are split between FAS and the School of Medicine. BME is a truly interdisciplinary research enterprise that offers educational programs leading to BS, MS, and PhD degrees. Research in BME is focused in three areas: biomedical imaging, biomolecular engineering, and biomechanics. The faculty members in biomedical imaging are engaged in research in MR, PET, and optical imaging, as well as biomedical image analysis and processing. Biomolecular engineering faculty members have research programs in drug delivery, tissue engineering, and cancer nanotechnology. Biomechanics faculty members are studying cardiovascular mechanics, bioreactor design for tissue engineering, and biomaterials. Admission to the PhD program is competitive and selective, with 140 applicants in 2010 from whom 19 (or 14%) were offered admission. BME students and junior faculty participate in the CTSA-funded YCCI Scholar and TL1 programs.
Medical Research Scholars Program (MRSP or “Med into Grad” Program) within Yale’s Interdepartmental PhD Program in Biological & Biomedical Sciences (BBS)
With the goal of building bridges between traditional graduate and medical training programs, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute has provided funds to Yale’s BBS PhD program to create a special Medical Research Scholars Program for a select group of students. This training experience includes both medically-oriented coursework and mentored clinical experiences designed especially for PhD students, preparing them to conduct clinically relevant research and work in close collaboration with physicians and physician-scientists. The MRSP integrates graduate students closely with translational and clinical programs at the interface of research and medicine.
Required coursework begins with normal human physiology and organ-based cell biology followed by human pathobiology, an introduction to drug discovery, validation, and clinical trials, and Biostatistics in Clinical Research. Students are also invited to audit selected medical school courses, and participate in the YCCI Research-in-Progress seminars and the annual YCCI retreat.
The centerpiece of MRSP is the two-year Mentored Clinical Experience course, which provides students with in-depth exposure to the science behind human diseases and first-hand encounters with patients. The MCE curriculum provides eight disease-based modules over a two-year span. The strength of this course lies in the philosophy that there is no more powerful teaching tool to reinforce medical knowledge gained from the classroom than mentored exposure and interactions with patients and clinical decision-making. In addition to giving the students a multidimensional opportunity to explore human disease, the MCE course allows the students to form relationships with a superb cadre of physician-scientists. Through these relationships, the students are able to explore research opportunities, make additional connections with other physicians and scientists engaged in disease-related research, and acquire mentors and role models who can continue to advise them as they progress through graduate school.
Approximately 25 incoming BBS students apply to the MRSP program each year, five of whom enter the program. MRSP students come from all eight of the BBS tracks (computational biology, immunology, microbiology, biophysics and biochemistry, molecular cell biology and genetics, neuroscience, pharmacology, and physiology).