Program Overview

The Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology ( is committed to developing the next generation of well-trained clinical researchers in women’s health in order to advance the science and delivery of care to women across the lifespan. To achieve this goal, the Division of Obstetrics and Gynecology in collaboration with the Master’s in Clinical Research Program within the Department of Epidemiology at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health, offers a 2-year clinical-research fellowship with the aim to increase the number of academic specialists who can embark on successful faculty careers, engaging in clinical care, research and teaching.

The Program

As part of the program, fellows obtain formal didactic training, expert mentoring and develop a clear research plan. Fellows receive training and a Master’s in Clinical Research (MSCR) ( through the Department of Epidemiology ( within the School of Public Health. Fellows begin the 2-year program in July and spend the first few months developing a training plan that is tailored to their background, clinical and research interests and future career goals. During this time, fellows devote time to identifying their primary research mentor and developing their research teams. Fellows actively engage in clinical activities, including outpatient care, labor and delivery, in-service gynecology attending and gynecologic surgery. In addition to clinical and research experience, our goal is for fellows to develop strong leadership skills, enhance their communications abilities and learn to lead clinical and research teams.

Fellows will dedicate 50% time to clinical activities and 50% time to research/research training.

  • Research training: Fellows complete the MSCR through the School of Public health. This training is focused on core disciplines in clinical research, including epidemiologic methods, biostatistics, clinical trials and qualitative methods. This program also offers a grant class in the second
  • Research: Fellows engage with their mentor and research team to conduct studies in their areas of interest. Ideally, we envision fellows working on two projects: 1) a short-term retrospective analysis of existing data to enhance their statistical analysis skills and 2) a longer-term project involving primary data collection.
  • Clinical work will include prenatal care and office-based gynecology at one of three sites (UNC Hospital Clinics, Weaver Crossing, Panther Creek), gynecologic surgery at the UNC Hillsborough Hospital and obstetrics at the main UNC Hospital.

The Candidates

Our division will enroll 4-5 fellows each year. Applicants must have a Medical Degree (MD), have completed an approved residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology, be in good standing within their residency program and a strong track record of professionalism. Fellows are selected based on their academic record, research interests, commitment to a career as an academic specialist (generalist) and demonstrated excellence in clinical care.

Resources and Leadership

The faculty who serve as mentors to the program are within the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the Gillings School of Public Health and the UNC Clinical and Translational Program and have successful careers in women’s and perinatal health, methodologic expertise and successful track records in publications, research presentations and grants. The Fellowship Program is co-directed by John Thorp, MD, PI of the UNC Maternal-Fetal Medicine Network and Wanda Nicholson, MD MPH, Director of the Diabetes and Obesity Core at the Center for Women’s Health Research.