Vision

If physiatrists treat problems in human function, then one might define physiatric researchers as scientists of human function. Yet there is no one type of training experience or skill set 'appropriate' for all physiatric researchers. The goal of RMSTP, therefore, is to expose physiatrists to tools and knowledge bases that are closely related to the problems of human function that they wish to understand and to help them transform these tools into the building blocks of a physiatric research base. RMSTP also seeks to expose trainees to opportunities for ongoing collaboration with investigators in related disciplines so as to continually enrich the collaborative stream of research and create an environment in which mentorship is consistently present.

Structure

RMSTP has four application phases intended for physiatrists in different stages of their career: pre-applicants, applicants, funded fellows and graduates. As part of RMSTP, we offer a Research Career Development Workshop at the AAP's Annual Meeting. At this workshop, you'll receive intensive education and networking in each of the four phases of RMSTP through lectures, small group interactions and individual meetings. The workshop provides individualized support to define candidates' research domains, select appropriate mentors and plan for maximal productivity in research training and funding proposals. Attendance at the workshop is by invitation-only, and is strongly recommended (but not required) prior to submitting applications.

Who Should Apply?

RMSTP is focused on the enhancement of research conducted in the field of physiatry. You should apply if you are interested in a career substantially devoted to extramurally funded research (typically over 50%) and/or wish to direct your own lab and be the physician responsible for defining research questions and approaches to addressing them.

Application Phases

Pre-Applicant Phase

If you’re a resident, clinical fellow or early career faculty member, this phase is for you. Once selected, a pre-applicant is educated and supported at the RMSTP workshop and through quarterly teleconferences that help the candidate maintain progress toward writing an individual career development grant. Individuals typically attend the workshop annually until they are ready to apply for a funded career development grant. Some individuals who enter the program early in their residency training may pause their RMSTP participation as they sort out fellowship plans and geographic location.

Eligibility: Potential pre-applicants must apply by December 1st, submitting a personal statement, current CV and letter of support from their Department Chair. The candidate's statement and/or Chair's letter must commit to payment for the program. Once pre-applicants are selected for participation by the Advisory Board, they complete this phase either when they receive approval to begin developing funding applications for RMSTP review or when they withdraw from the program.

Cost: AAP Members: $300 for Residents/Fellows or $650 for Practicing Physiatrists
Non-Members: $500 for Residents/Fellows or $900 for Practicing Physiatrists
*Not included: Cost of the AAP’s Annual Meeting Registration

Applicant Phase

Once approved for this phase of participation, trainees will have the opportunity to request RMSTP review of 2-3 career development grant applications annually (2 new applications or 1 new application and 2 revisions) by the RMSTP Advisory Board. Teleconference groups will be formed of trainees aiming for a similar date for their initial application. For each year of participation, trainees will identify the anticipated submission dates of grants and will receive RMSTP due dates in return (at least 9 weeks ahead of the due date). The applications will be assigned to a minimum of 2 peer reviewers knowledgeable about the candidate's scientific area as well as one of the RMSTP directors. An optional post-review phone meeting is available to discuss the implications of the reviews. As a condition of participation in the 'Applicant' phase, each trainee will provide a copy of each final submitted grant application and a copy of the resulting funding agency peer review comments.

Eligibility: To advance to the 'Applicant' phase from 'Pre-Applicant', candidates must submit their current bio, a bio from their proposed primary mentor, a description of their area of scientific focus, and a specific aims page. For participants who want to join the RMSTP Applicant phase directly, they must submit everything listed in the previous sentence and a letter of support from their Department Chair. The Chair's letter must commit either the candidate or the department to pay the cost of the program. Candidates remain involved as 'Applicants' until they receive career development funding or withdraw from the program. As part of their participation in RMSTP, trainees will cite the RMSTP's mentorship as an additional component of their grant-funded career development plan.

Cost: AAP Members: $300 for Residents/Fellows or $650 for Practicing Physiatrists
Non-Members: $500 for Residents/Fellows or $900 for Practicing Physiatrists
*Not included: Cost of the AAP’s Annual Meeting Registration

Funded Fellow Phase

Once funded, trainees will be moved into quarterly teleconference groups based on their start date. They will continue with quarterly calls for the first 3 years of funded training. In addition, trainees will have the opportunity to request RMSTP review of 1 grant annually by the RMSTP Advisory Board. This grant can be to any funding mechanism. Trainees will identify the anticipated submission dates of grants, and will receive RMSTP due dates in return (at least 9 weeks ahead of the due date). The applications will be assigned to a minimum of 2 peer reviewers knowledgeable about the candidate's scientific areas for written peer review. An optional post-review phone meeting is available to discuss the implications of the reviews.

Eligibility: To advance to the 'Funded Fellow' phase from 'Applicant', candidates must receive extramural funding for their training. For participants who want to join RMSTP in the 'Funded Fellow' phase, they must submit their current bio, a bio of their primary mentor, a funded-specific aims page, and a letter of support from their Department Chair. The Chair's letter must commit either the candidate or the department to pay for the program. Trainees continue for at least 3 years.

Cost: AAP Members: $300 for Residents/Fellows or $650 for Practicing Physiatrists
Non-Members: $500 for Residents/Fellows or $900 for Practicing Physiatrists
*Not included: Cost of the AAP’s Annual Meeting Registration

Graduate Phase

Participants are invited to attend the annual RMSTP Workshop and to attend an annual teleconference mid-year to discuss their transition to independence, and work toward promotion. In addition, we rely heavily on graduates to mentor fellows in all previous phases.

Eligibility: Trainees are eligible to participate as graduates upon completion of their career development training award.

Cost: No charge!

Our Advisory Board

Michael Boninger, MD, Co-Director of RMSTP

Mike is Endowed Professor and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Pittsburgh. He holds adjunct appointments in the Departments of Rehabilitation Science & Technology and Bioengineering. Mike also works as a physician researcher for the VA and as the Senior Medical Director for post-acute care for the health services division of UPMC. He has received funding as PI from the NIH, VA, NIDILRR, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), CDC and National Science Foundation. Mike is the Director of the University of Pittsburgh Model Center on Spinal Cord Injury (UPMC-SCI), funded by NIDILRR. He has held T32 and T35 grants, which are designed to foster research development among post-doctoral clinicians and medical students respectively. Under Mike’s supervision, medical students, residents and graduate students have won over 55 national research awards. He is also an investigator on the NIH’s Alliance for Regenerative Rehabilitation Research and Training (AR3T). AR3T has a major training component, including sabbaticals, an annual conference and web-based materials. Mike has over 230 peer reviewed journal publications including articles related to research training and holds 4 U.S. patents.

John Whyte, MD, PhD, Co-Director of RMSTP

John is a physiatrist and experimental psychologist specializing in TBI rehabilitation. He is the Founding Director of the Moss Rehabilitation Research Institute. His research focuses on cognitive impairment after TBI, including assessment and treatment, with a major emphasis on disorders of attention, executive function and consciousness. In addition to his empirical research, he has a longstanding interest in the special challenges posed by rehabilitation treatment trials, the difficulties in defining rehabilitation treatments, the role of theory in guiding rehabilitation research and the process of translating scientific advances into practical rehabilitation treatment interventions. His research has been funded by the NIH, NIDILRR, PCORI, DOD and a number of private foundations. He has received numerous awards for his research contributions including Distinguished Academician from the AAP and the Moody Prize for contributions to brain injury research and practice. John was elected to the National Academy of Medicine in 2015.

Pablo Celnik, MD, PhD

Pablo is Director of the Johns Hopkins University Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation and Physiatrist-in-Chief at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. He is a Professor of PM&R, neurology and neuroscience at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He serves as Chair for PM&R Research and Medical Director of the outpatient neurorehabilitation program. In addition, Pablo is Director of the Human Brain Physiology and Stimulation Laboratory, where he has published more than 60 manuscripts in highly regarded journals and books. He is internationally-recognized for his expertise in neurologic rehabilitation, particularly with stroke and traumatic brain injury.

Leighton Chan, MD, MPH

Leighton is a Tenured Senior Scientist and the Chief of Rehabilitation Medicine at the NIH Clinical Research Center, a 200-bed research hospital on the NIH campus. He has concentrated his research efforts on studying the services provided to individuals with disabilities. Leighton’s areas of focus have been payment systems for rehabilitation, the health care delivered to Medicare beneficiaries with disabilities and the Social Security Disability Insurance system. He has published more than 100 peer reviewed articles (including 10 in JAMA, Lancet and NEJM) and has received research funding in excess of $50 million. In 2007, he was elected to the Institute of Medicine.

David Morgenroth, MD

David is Associate Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine at the University of Washington. He is also Associate Director of the Amputee Rehabilitation Fellowship at VA Puget Sound Health Care System (one of only two amputee fellowships in the United States) and is an Investigator in the VA RR&D Center for Limb Loss and Mobility (CLiMB). His clinical care and research focuses on improving mobility and quality of life in those with anatomic or functional limb loss. David’s research has been funded by the NIH, VA and DOD. He is also a dedicated educator on the subjects of amputee rehabilitation and gait biomechanics. He has been invited to give numerous research and educational talks nationally and internationally.

Leslie Morse, DO

Dr. Leslie Morse, DO, is the Endowed Medical Director of Research at Craig Hospital and Associate Professor of PM&R at the University of Colorado. Her research, as well as her clinical focus, is the care of individuals with SCI, with a long-term goal of developing mechanism-based therapies to prevent and treat SCI-induced osteoporosis. To that end, she is studying the effect of robotic-assisted gait-training on bone health with a clinical trial award from the Department of Defense. Leslie is also the Co-Project Director of the Rocky Mountain Regional Spinal Injury System.

Carmen Terzic, MD, PhD

Carmen is Chair of the Department of Medicine and Rehabilitation with a joint appointment in the Division of Cardiovascular Diseases at Mayo Clinic in Rochester. She is Associate Medical Director of Cardiovascular Rehabilitation program and holds the academic rank of Professor of PM&R. Her clinical interests include cardiovascular and neuromuscular rehabilitation, and her research focuses on regenerative medicine and stem cell-based cardiac repair, nuclear transport and intracellular calcium homeostasis. As a principal investigator and co-investigator, her work has been funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; and the American Heart Association, among other organizations. Carmen has reported research findings in over 80 manuscripts and textbook chapters.

NIH Liaison: Ralph Nitkin, PhD

Ralph is the Deputy Director of the National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research (NCMRR) at the NIH. He has been heavily involved in the formation of the rehabilitation research infrastructure networks, the annual rehab grant-writing workshop (TIGRR) and special career-development networks for physiatrists, physical/occupational therapists and rehab engineers. He has helped promote NIH research initiatives in diverse areas such as genomic factors that affect rehab outcomes, promotion of exercise and diet in children with disabilities, clinical trial design in rehab, technologies for healthy independent living and research workforce diversity.

Pre-Applicant

Pre-application is strongly encouraged to attend the annual RMSTP Workshop, offered in conjunction with the AAP’s Annual Meeting. Attendance at the workshop is strongly recommended (but not required) in order to submit a Phase I application for funded fellowship training. Pre-applicants can be residents, fellows or junior faculty interested in becoming involved in rehabilitation research.

Requirements:

  • Signed letter of support from your Department Chair (including commitment to fund RMSTP fees, trainee’s registration and travel to the AAP's Annual Meeting, AAP membership, if selected; and willingness to provide flexibility to the trainee to develop the Phase I application during the latter part of the PGY-3 year)
  • Personal statement (1 page max) specifically describing the candidate’s area of research interest, future career goals, prior research and related academic experience
  • Current curriculum vitae (CV)
  • What year will or did you complete your residency?
  • If selected, when do you propose to start Phase I training?
  • Are you a resident planning on doing a fellowship between your residency and RMSTP? If yes, please explain and identify when you would be ready to start the funded RMSTP fellowship.
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Applicant/ Funded Fellow

Applicants and funded fellows are strongly encouraged to attend the annual RMSTP Workshop, offered in conjunction with the AAP’s Annual Meeting. Attendance at the workshop is strongly recommended (but not required) in order to become or participate as a funded RMSTP fellow.

Most applicants will advance from the Pre-Applicants phase into the Applicant phase, then advance to the Funded Fellow phase. However, if you wish to join the 'Applicant' or 'Funded Fellow' phase directly, please also submit a letter of support from your Department Chair* including written commitment on behalf of the department or candidate to pay RMSTP fees, registration and travel to the AAP's Annual Meeting, and AAP membership.

Requirements:

  • Candidate’s current bio
  • Bio for candidate’s primary mentor
  • Personal statement (1 page max) with description of scientific area of focus
  • Scientific aims page
  • *Candidates applying directly to the 'Applicant' phase (not advancing from 'Pre-Applicant' phase) must also submit a letter of support from their Department Chair.
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