Our IMSD program provides graduate students with the professional development opportunities, academic support, and a community which enhance success in their PhD programs and make them highly competitive for the postdoctoral positions and scientific careers of their choice. All students pursuing PhDs in biomedical sciences are invited to participate in our IMSD program. Students are eligible for IMSD funding if they are citizens or permanent residents of the U.S. and members of groups historically underrepresented in the biomedical sciences. Thus, individuals with disabilities, from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups (Native Americans/Alaska Natives, Hispanic Americans, Hawaiian Natives/U.S. Pacific Islanders, and African Americans), and/or from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds are invited and encouraged to participate in our IMSD program.
Competitive Diversity Fellowships are available to first-year underrepresented students accepted into the BBSP. These collaborative awards between IMSD, T32 or HHMI training programs, and the UNC School of Medicine provide 1-2 years of salary support and a $1000 travel award to give a research presentation at a scientific conference. Partnerships have been established with the following training programs:
- Bioinformatics and Computational Biology
- Genetics & Molecular Biology
- Integrative Vascular Biology
- Molecular and Cellular Biophysics
- Translational Medicine
IMSD participants can choose from a menu of outstanding professional development opportunities that enable each individual student to reach their full potential. These opportunities are available in group and one-on-one sessions with nationally recognized professional consultants in public speaking/presentation, scientific writing, and career planning.
Since outstanding scholastic performance makes students more competitive for fellowships and training grants, our Academic and Career Excellence (ACE) Program offers tremendous academic support tailored to meet the specific needs of each IMSD participant. ACE staff are PhDed scientists who provide academic coaching for courses, development of critical analysis skills, and comprehensive exam preparation. Additionally, ACE instructors and experienced IMSD graduate students provide mentorship to assist first year students with their transition into graduate school.