Residents in UNC’s Internal Medicine program have opportunities to conduct research at an institution and department that perennially ranks among top in NIH and overall research funding and publication impact. We strive to meet the needs of and create opportunities for all residents with an interest in research regardless of their incoming experience level.
Residents with highly developed research skills and a definite goal of building research intensive careers can participate in our physician scientist training program through a research pathway match. Residents seeking more flexibility in learning how research might be a part of their career path or who may not have yet experienced contributing to a research project have opportunities to further explore this aspect of their career development. In the first year, interns get training in the principles and pursue implementation of a QI project.
Additionally, online training in biomedical ethics and human subjects research is provided to allow residents to take the next step into contributing or even initiating research projects in clinical or population-based studies or translational or laboratory-based studies depending on the learner’s interests. Program leadership, including the program director, associate program director for research, and chief residents provide support to residents in identifying research mentors who are aligned with trainee interests and career development goals, from the Department’s outstanding research faculty. Our residents frequently present their work at local and national meetings as well as publish their work in peer-reviewed journals.
Resident Research Day
Hosted annually in the Spring, this is an opportunity to showcase the diverse scholarly work that our residents produce each year. Every upper-level resident presents a poster in categories ranging from clinical vignettes and clinical research to quality improvement and educational initiatives.
This is a lively event and an opportunity for our residents and faculty members to meet, mingle, and foster future mentoring relationships. Resident Research Day includes individual awards for each poster category as well as naming the recipient of the Bondurant-Ehringhaus Research Award (see below).
Quality Improvement Curriculum
All internal medicine residents take part in the Physician Engagement in Quality and Safety curriculum through UNC’s Institute for Healthcare Quality Improvement (IHQI). This begins with a virtual course that highlights safety and quality challenges in healthcare and physicians’ roles as leaders in improvement. Residents complete an independent quality improvement project during their intern year and have access to QI mentors and the expansive resources provided by the Institute for Healthcare Quality Improvement for the duration of their training.
Every intern is expected to complete one quality improvement project during their intern year and each resident is expected to participate in scholarly activity during residency. Many of our residents go on to present their research at national meetings, publish findings in peer-reviewed journals, and receive research grants based on their work. Learn more here.
Physician Scientist Training Program
The Bondurant-Ehringhaus award was begun in 2017 by Ms. Susan Ehringhaus and Dr. Stuart Bondurant, both long-time supporters of the UNC School of Medicine and the Internal Medicine Residency Program. This award annual award is given to a second-year Internal Medicine or third-year Medicine-Pediatrics resident in recognition of outstanding work in research.