Junior Faculty Training Support


The CCTS REACH Program provides support for selected post-doctoral junior faculty on their pathway to becoming independent clinical and translational investigators.

NIH KL2 Clinical and Translational Science (CATS) Scholars Program
CATS Affiliate Scholars Program


NIH KL2 Clinical and Translational Science (CATS) Scholars Program

The University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) invites applications for the Clinical and Translational Science (CATS) Scholars Awards.  These two year awards provide a vigorous mentoring and career development program for clinical and translational scholars in disciplines and professions such as medicine, dentistry, nursing, psychology, pharmacy, and physical & occupational therapy. The CATS Scholars Program is intended to accelerate career progression of scientists who have demonstrated a commitment to clinical and/or translational research. Ideal candidates are junior faculty who will have completed the majority of their formal research training and now require protected time to develop a specific research project that will lead to an external funding.

Download the full CATS RFAApplication Process, and Selection Criteria documents
Deadline: 5:00pm, Monday, April 17, 2017
 

Jump to Section:
Program Benefits
Core Components  
Scholar Expectations
Mentor/Department Requirements
Eligibility for Application
Questions
Documents
 

Benefits of the Program: 

  • 75% release time for research and career development, which will be funded by the CATS Program up to $100,000 (the home department/unit must commit to this release time in writing at the time of application).
  • Funds to support scholarly activities. Scholars will receive $25,000 annually to support their scholarly activities, as well as $2,500/year for research related travel.
  • Individualized career planning and formalized annual review of progress
  • Monthly career development workshops and activities
  • Peer review of grants and external presentations
  • Mentoring from senior faculty
  • Access to subsidized CCTS core services (requires submission of an application/proposal for approval)
  • Additional funds for external enrichment activities to support career development goals

Core Components of the CATS Scholars Program  

1) Mentoring: Teams, Individual Development Plans, and Career Guidance

Following admittance into the program, each Scholar creates an Individual Development Plan (IDP) under the guidance of program mentors. The IDP process allows for customization of the program based upon the needs of each Scholar, and also provides an opportunity for each Scholar to reassess their mentoring team, adding or subtracting members as needed.

2) Coursework
Decisions about enrollment in formal coursework are made during the IDP process, and courses are selected to help scholars improve or gain core competencies in areas as identified during the planning stage.  All Scholars are encouraged to take HPA 591: Grant Writing for New Investigators.

3) Career Development Sessions
CATS Scholars are required to attend monthly Career Development Sessions, which include both facilitated discussions and presentations by outside speakers. Career Development Sessions include both Workshops and Peer Review Activities.  CATS Scholars are also required to take training in the Responsible Conduct of Research.

4) Team Science Initiatives
Team science and collaboration are integrated into the CATS Scholars career development activities both in the Career Development Workshop Series and in formal coursework as appropriate to Scholar needs.

5) Community Engagement
As appropriate to their research, CATS Scholars are encouraged to consult with the Community Engagement Advisory Board (CEAB) of the UIC CCTS to describe their research and ask for feedback.  Scholars may also enroll in coursework relevant to health disparities and community engagement. 

6) External Enrichment Activities
Scholars are encouraged to engage in outside experiences that are relevant to their proposed research and career development goals. Examples of such opportunities might be taking a short interval in residence at another academic institution in order to learn an advanced technology, or attending a workshop or training program designed to increase skills in leadership or project management. Additional CCTS funds are available to support external enrichment activities.

Scholar Expectations

  • Undertake research/career development under a 75% protected time agreement.
  • Attend all CATS Scholars programmed career development activities (2-3 hours per month)
  • Under program guidance, prepare an Individual Development Plan and undertake the recommended elements of that plan
  • Participate in an annual self-assessment
  • If using human subjects, provide NIH format Human Subjects section prior to appointment to the program.

Mentor/Department Requirements

  • Guarantee 75% protected time to the Scholar
  • Mentors agree to meet regularly with Scholars to support their development
  • Mentors are encouraged to attend mentor training as offered, and are invited to participate in career development activities as appropriate.

Eligibility for Application

  • Junior faculty (assistant professor and below) holding a research and/or health-professional doctoral degree or its equivalent and prior research training, e.g., the MS CTS (through the CCTS), a PhD, MD, or equivalent
  • Department/unit assurance of 75% protected time for research once in the program
  • Substantial prior research experience that allows development of an independent research program
  • Primary research interest in clinical and/or translational science
  • Interest in active participation in a mentored career development program
  • NIH requires that applicants must be United States citizens, non-citizen nationals, or individuals lawfully admitted for permanent residence who hold an Alien Registration Receipt Card (I-151 or I-551, or some other verification of legal admission as a permanent resident). Individuals on temporary or student visas are not eligible.
  • Those who have served as former or current principal investigators on any NIH research project grant (other than NIH Small Grants (R03) or Exploratory/ Developmental (R21) grants or their equivalents), or on any equivalent non-PHS peer-reviewed research grants that are over $100,000 direct costs per year, or as project leaders on sub-projects of program project (P01) or center grants (e.g. a P50 grant) are NOT eligible.
  • Candidates who have a currently pending NIH K series application are NOT eligible.
  • Applicants from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply. UIC is dedicated to increasing the participation of individuals currently underrepresented in the biomedical, clinical, behavioral, and social sciences. 

Questions?

Review our KL2 FAQs
For additional questions regarding the program, please contact Luisa DiPietro at 312.355.0432, ldipiet@uic.edu or Jack Zwanziger at 312.996.1062, jzwanzig@uic.edu.
For questions regarding the application process, please contact Jaclyn Jackson at 312.413.5429 or jaclynj@uic.edu.

Download the full CATS RFAApplication Process, and Selection Criteria documents
Deadline: 5:00pm, Monday, April 17, 2017


KL2 Scholar Resources

Educational and Professional Development Resources
Current & Past KL2 Scholars
Current & Past Professional Development Scholars
KL2 Mentors


CATS Affiliate Scholars Program- Not Currently Accepting Nominations

Affiliate Scholars are supported by their home units and will participate in the six core activities that are available to NIH appointed CATS Scholars (described below), and thus benefit from the CATS Scholars program of mentoring, career development, and other training activities.

1) Mentoring: Teams, Individual Development Plans, and Career Guidance

Following admittance into the program, each Scholar creates an Individual Development Plan (IDP) under the guidance of Dr. Philip Clifford and Dr. Jack Zwanziger. The IDP process allows for customization of the program based upon the needs of each Scholar, and also provides an opportunity for each Scholar to reassess their mentoring team, adding or subtracting members as needed.

2) Coursework

Affiliate Scholars have access to a curriculum customized to their needs and skills gaps, which may involve any of the educational programs available at UIC.  The decision to enroll in formal coursework is made during the IDP process, and courses are selected to help scholars improve or gain core competencies in areas as identified during the planning stage.  All Affiliate Scholars are encouraged to take HPA 591: Grant Writing for New Investigators.

3) Career Development Sessions

Affiliate Scholars are required to attend monthly Career Development Sessions, currently held on the 3rd Wednesday of every month at 11:00 AM. Career Development Sessions include both Workshops and Peer Review Activities. 

4) Team Science Initiatives

Team science and collaboration are integrated into the Affiliate Scholars career development activities in several ways. For all Scholars, the Career Development Workshop Series (above) includes specific workshops on Team Science and on Locating and Working with Collaborators. As part of the IDP process, all CATS Affiliate Scholars will develop a mentoring map that crosses disciplines. Formal training in team science is also available as a module in HPA 526 Leadership and Diversity in Clinical Research. 

5) Community Engagement

The Community Engagement Advisory Board (CEAB) of the UIC CCTS is committed to providing critical consultations and feedback to diverse groups of UIC faculty, pre- and post-doctoral students, community organizations, and faculty and trainees at other Chicago-area universities on their research efforts.  CATS Affiliate Scholars are welcome to consult with the CEAB, to describe their research and ask for feedback.  Scholars may also enroll in HPA 526 Leadership and Diversity in Clinical Research, which includes modules that are highly relevant to health disparities and community engagement. 

6) External Enrichment Activities

Scholars are encouraged to seek out experiences that are relevant to their proposed research and career development goals, or those that might enhance collaboration. Examples of such opportunities might be taking a short interval in residence at another academic institution in order to learn an advanced technology, or attending a workshop or training program designed to increase skills in leadership or project management. Note that no CCTS funds are available to support external enrichment activities.

Nomination Instructions

We are not currently accepting nominations. For questions regarding the program, please contact Luisa DiPietro at ldipiet@uic.edu.