Dr. Cheryl Vamos selected into a competitive NIH-funded professional development program

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Dr. Cheryl Vamos, assistant professor in the College of Public Health Department of Community and Family Health, recently completed a rigorous professional training program on grant writing. The program convened for a three-month period from June to August.

Vamos took part in a writing-intensive, small group workshop experience designed to foster grantsmanship among promising early-stage investigators who are conducting innovative research in the biomedical and biobehavioral sciences.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded National Research Mentoring Network’s Proposal Preparation Program (NRMN-P3) accepted a cohort of nine junior faculty, including post-docs, assistant professors and associate professors from around the U.S. to participate.

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Coaches and trainees of the 2015 NRMN-P3 program.

The program included biweekly webinars and coaching sessions via WebEx videoconferencing, active writing between sessions, presentations and two in-person trips to convene the national group at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis (U of M).

“The NRMN-P3 training hosted by the U of M was such a dynamic and valuable professional development experience,” Vamos said. “Throughout the three months, I was able to meaningfully participate in highly-engaged activities such as lectures, workshops, skill-building sections, mentoring with experts in the field, web-conferences and mock study section reviews, with the ultimate goal of strengthening a competitive research proposal.”

The program culminated with an on-site mock panel review of U of M researchers in diverse content areas. Trainees received in-depth feedback on their proposals in preparation for their upcoming NIH submissions.

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Mock study section panel review at the University of Minnesota.

“One of the most attractive components of the program was the opportunity to ‘learn and do’, where we left the program with an end product that consisted of a well-developed proposal ready for submission,” Vamos said. “The mentors were knowledgeable, passionate and dedicated, and the ability to meet and network with other program participants from multiple disciplines around the nation was an added bonus.”

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Dr. Cheryl Vamos taking a break on Scholars Walk at the University of Minnesota-Minneapolis campus.

“I would definitely recommend this program to any junior faculty who is looking to expand their grantsmanship,” Vamos said.

To learn more about the NRMN-P3 program, visit the NRMN-Proposal Preparation Program for Trainees website.

Story by Cheryl Vamos and Anna Mayor, USF College of Public Health. Photos courtesy of Cheryl Vamos.