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Internship to Reduce Disparities in Health Research Professions Igda Martinez, Psy.D. Post-Doctoral Fellow Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and.

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Presentation on theme: "Internship to Reduce Disparities in Health Research Professions Igda Martinez, Psy.D. Post-Doctoral Fellow Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and."— Presentation transcript:

1 Internship to Reduce Disparities in Health Research Professions Igda Martinez, Psy.D. Post-Doctoral Fellow Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and Aging Research Rutgers University

2 Goals To increase the number of underrepresented students in health research To include a broader range of ethnic and cultural perspectives and voices in health research To enhance the Human, Social and Cultural Capital of those students so they are successful in graduate school and beyond

3 Objectives Provide an intensive summer program in preparation for graduate training Recruit students early in college to foster interest and skills in health research Encourage close mentoring relationships Provide support, guidance, and information about graduate school Train students to communicate health research to broad audiences

4 History Founded in 1991 as Project L/EARN Highly successful at preparing underrepresented students for graduate school and research careers. Funded for past 10 years by NIMH 10 students per year (8 from Rutgers; 2 recruited nationally) NIMH no longer funding undergraduate research training Critical start in college to maintain pipeline for diversifying health research community

5 Three Essential Types of Capital Acquisition of technical skills & substantive health knowledge Incorporation into network of research mentors and alumni Exposure to culture of research and graduate study

6 Structure Success requires hands-on intensive work on a one-to-one basis with accomplished mentors 10-week intensive summer program Academic year internship with mentor GRE review course Mentorship in applying to graduate schools

7 Individual Research Experience One-on-one matching with faculty mentor Apply concepts & skills from lectures to specific hypotheses and data Products: Research paper geared toward publication Poster presentation 20-minute symposium presentation

8 Role of the Faculty Mentor Substantive and research training Foster educational and career aspirations Guidance in selection of graduate programs Immersion and modeling of research culture 30+ different faculty have served as mentors Volunteered services “Time intensive but very rewarding”

9 Mentoring Chains Faculty mentors Summer program Hire interns as research assistants Oversee undergraduate honors theses Instructional staff Course instructor + 2 teaching assistants Selected from among former interns Role models for interns Teaching experience for instructors

10 More Mentoring Chains Rutgers Center for State Health Policy Post-baccalaureate research assistantships Graduate assistantships Return of alumni as mentors Faculty mentors in Project L/EARN Fieldwork supervisors for undergraduate interns “Senior interns” in research groups assist younger interns

11 Track Record: Graduate Training Of the 120+ alumni who have already graduated from college 40 master’s degrees completed or underway 29 doctoral degrees completed or underway Median age ~ 29 years Snapshot early in their careers 20+ are still undergraduates Approximately 40% are Latino

12 Track Record: Publications & Presentations Many interns have had an active role in presenting/publishing research 60+ peer-reviewed journal articles 65+ conference presentations 40+ reports, issue briefs, etc. 24 interns have 1+ publication 19 mentors published with 1+ intern

13 Track Record: Career Paths Careers in wide range of health-related fields Intern, emergency medicine, Mt. Sinai School of Medicine Co-director, community mental health clinic, Newark Staff attorney, Community Health Law Project Board of NJ Women and AIDS Network Newark EMA AIDS Health Services Planning Council Chief of Staff, St. Christopher’s Inc., residential treatment home placement Maternal and Child Epidemiology Unit, NJ Dept. of Health and Senior Services

14 From airport luggage loader to Assistant Professor Jeffrey Gonzalez L/EARN mentor: Howard Leventhal BA, psychology, Rutgers Univ., 1999 PhD, clinical psychology, Univ. of Miami, 2005 Post-doctoral fellowship, behavioral medicine, Mass. General Hospital & Harvard Medical School Assistant Professor, Psychology, Ferkauf at Yeshiva Univ Research areas Treatment adherence and adjustment in chronic illness Depressive symptoms and medication compliance

15 From 2.8 GPA to NRSA doctoral fellowship recipient Yamalis Diaz L/EARN Mentor: Kathleen Pottick BA, psychology, Rutgers Univ., 2000 Project coordinator, Center for State Health Policy Project L/EARN teaching assistant Doctoral candidate (Ph.D. expected 2009), clinical psychology, Univ. of Maryland, with NIMH NRSA Dissertation Award Post-doctoral fellowship: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research interests: Behavioral treatments among minorities Maternal parenting and children’s behavior problems

16 From psychology major to Latino mental health researcher & clinician Igda Martínez L/EARN Mentor: Peter Guarnaccia BA, psychology, Rutgers Univ., 2002, summa cum laude Project coordinator, Center for State Health Policy Project L/EARN teaching assistant Psy.D., Clinical Psychology, GSAPP with APA Minority Fellowship Post-doctoral fellowship: Institute for Health, Health Care Policy & Aging Research Latino mental health: acculturation, health disparities, treatment adherence and stigma


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