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Our Training Programs include the following opportunities

Foreign Graduate Students

Applications are invited from qualified graduate students to receive short-term training at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in AIDS/TB related research areas via Einstein-AITRP.

Background

Einstein-AITRP is funded by the Fogarty International Center (FIC) of the US National Institutes of Health (NIH). This program started in 2000. Under this program, collaborative research on HIV/AIDS between scientists in India/Bangladesh/Rwanda and the US at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine is supported. The AITRP will provide opportunities for scientists, physicians and other health professionals from the above countries to conduct collaborative or training research in the areas including (i) research on HIV, TB and other opportunistic agents of AIDS; (ii) Behavioral and Epidemiological research.

We believe that further augmentation of AIDS research in our partner countries can be accomplished via graduate students who are engaged in advanced research relevant to AIDS prevention in our partner counties. We hope to accomplish this during short-term (6 month) visits to Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Eligibility

Candidates to be trained under this program are expected to be graduate students registered for Ph. D. in a University or Institute in India or Bangladesh and who are approximately in the middle of their thesis research period, in the second to third year of their research.

  • The student must have already selected a thesis laboratory, completed the coursework and the qualifying/comprehensive exam as required by the institution.
  • The student should have already begun the thesis research.
  • Must have mastered all the routine techniques that are already available in the thesis advisor’s laboratory.
  • The students are selected from laboratories that have established a collaborative research arrangement with the Albert Einstein’s AITRP. However, laboratories that do not yet have a collaborative arrangement in place currently, but are considering one, can also sponsor a student.
  • This program is meant to be an opportunity to initiate new collaborative links between the foreign scientists in India or Bangladesh and US scientists at AECOM – but not to merely receive training in a technique or as a means of cost abatement.
  • Most important, the student should have a high level of independence in being able to conduct research with some guidance from the US advisor.

The interested faculty who wish to sponsor their students or the students must write directly to the Director of the AITRP, Dr. Vinayaka R. Prasad. After an initial determination of which laboratory is likely to host the student and a willingness of the host laboratory, the applications will be reviewed by a selection committee. The final decision to select a given student will depend upon the quality of the proposal, mutual interest of the student’s Ph. D. Advisor and the US collaborator at AECOM, the AECOM AITRP Program’s research priorities, the student’s level of training and independence among other attributes.

Training

It must be emphasized that student training MUST be part of a collaborative research program between the thesis advisor of the applicant and a US scientist working at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine on topics relevant to HIV/AIDS including the opportunistic infectious agents of AIDS. However, the training would be centered on the following elements.

  • Advanced techniques in which training could be acquired – including bench research, behavioral research, epidemiological
  • Research: The student must plan to perform research pertaining to their thesis topic addressing issues of AIDS prevention in India/Bangladesh and not be part of research currently ongoing at the US laboratory. Mentors in India/Bangladesh are also encouraged to sponsor students who wish to learn epidemiological methods to process data (gathered in their home countries) and to develop interpretations.
  • Didactic learning: The students will have the opportunity to participate in the specially designed workshops that deal with the current progress in HIV/AIDS and TB research.

How to apply

Visiting Scientist (India and Bangladesh only)

Background

We seek requests for collaborations from our foreign country collaborators (individuals from India, Bangladesh or Rwanda). Selected individuals will be offered a Visiting Scientist position for up to a 6-month period. Planning for a visit of less than 3-months duration is not encouraged.

Purpose

This program is aimed at training younger scientists at the level of post-doctoral fellow or graduate student (minimum requirement is a Master’s degree). Visiting Faculty positions are permitted as a prelude to visits by their trainees so that they can directly participate in the process of US mentoring for their trainees. Due to the fact that this is not a training program for faculty, the salary levels are not going to be equal to US faculty. However, many faculty do wish to visit AECOM to ensure an efficient progress under the AITRP collaboration. For example, they learn or standardize a key methodology to take home to teach their students or set up an experimental system that can be used by a student in a subsequent visit or even overlapping visit.

These visits cannot be solely for the purpose of attending a scientific meeting in the US or vicinity – they are mainly for the purpose of collaborative research.

Eligibility and Criteria

For any given year, a limited number of slots are available in the visiting scientist category to be shared from among all three countries. We invite requests, throughout the year, from all participants who wish to carry out collaborative research at the Albert Einstein. From among the respondents, we will select as many as can be accommodated based on the following criteria.

  • Quality of the research proposed and its impact on AIDS research in the home country, potential for continued collaboration and potential for research initiated here to stimulate further research in India/Bangladesh.
  • Program priorities.
  • Willingness of the AECOM scientist to underwrite the collaborative research and host the visiting scientist.

How to apply

Master's degree in Clinical Research Training Program

Background

There is an increasing need for clinical research on AIDS. This is both due to many drug and vaccine trials currently underway or planned in India/Bangladesh/Rwanda as well as much needed epidemiological AIDS studies. Therefore, we wish to help promote training in this critical area. The admission to the CRTP at Albert Einstein is competitive, but if the candidate that we sponsor is successful in securing admission, up to two candidates each year will be funded by the AECOM-AITRP.

We invite highly qualified candidates in India/Bangladesh/Rwanda who may be interested in applying for admission to the Master's degree in Clinical Research Training Program (CRTP) of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Eligibility requirements

  • A basic medical degree-MBBS or equivalent.
  • A permanent position at a University, Academic Center, Medical Research Facility. The candidate should demonstrate not just a strong desire, but an actual evidence (such as a position in home country) of returning to their home countries after the training. Ideal candidates are those who hold positions in an organization that is currently performing or is involved in AIDS clinical research. If you do not have a permanent position now, you can provide a letter from the Director of the institute or Chairman of the department that you will be assured of a position upon your return. Jointly signed bond agreements are also acceptable. Intent of the candidate to return to home country is taken very seriously – therefore, this will be a strong consideration in accepting a candidate.
  • A strong aptitude for Clinical AIDS Research documented mainly by actual research experience as evidenced by publications in the area of HIV/AIDS research as well as attendance in conferences, workshops or other relevant training.
  • Epidemiological studies in which the data was or will be collected in India/Bangladesh/Rwanda, but the analysis is done during the 2-year CRTP course here are ideally suited for this program. However, projects involving bench research are not excluded.
  • Master’s in CRTP is not a program run by the AITRP. This is a free-standing program that is run at Albert Einstein with Dr. Ellie Schoenbaum as the Director. The AECOM-AITRP views CRTP degree granting training as a step in the development of individuals to fill the void of research capacity in India/Bangladesh/Rwanda. This will occur by a process of sponsorship by AITRP to the CRTP admissions committee who are highly interested in international training, but the candidates must be selected by their admissions committee as well as the AITRP steering committee in order to be supported. Thus, there are two separate selection processes involved: AITRP and CRTP.

If you meet these requirements, click the following link to read the requirements laid by the AECOM. After reading the eligibility requirements, if you wish to apply, contact Dr. Vinayaka R. Prasad before submitting the application. The CRTP AECOM Website.

How to apply for AITRP/CRTP Joint program.

  • First, it is important that you are a citizen/resident of India, Bangladesh or Rwanda and you are currently conducting AIDS research or have the potential to conduct a clinically oriented research in your home-country.
  • If you meet the eligibility requirements listed above, discuss with your current advisor/clinical collaborator your plans to apply for Master’s in CRTP program at AECOM and make sure that he/she is agreeable to collaborating with an AECOM scientist who will also serve as your co-mentor.
  • Initial query: Send Dr. Vinayaka R. Prasad or Dr. Ellie Schoenbaum, your curriculum vitae (on the NIH Biosketch format) along with a letter and a summary of the research you intend to perform. If it is felt that your qualifications may be suitable, then we will request you to submit a 3-page proposal.
  • Finding a AECOM mentor: The AITRP office will circulate the 3-page proposal among the AITRP participating faculty at AECOM to find a suitable mentor. If a suitable mentor is found, then the AITRP Director will invite you to submit the complete application to the CRTP program. Alternately, the candidate can directly contact specific members of the AECOM participating faculty.
  • Since the application deadline is within the first couple of months of each calendar year – individuals interested in applying are advised to start a year before to ensure that a mentor can be found and the application can be developed to be competitive well in advance of the CRTP admission committee’s meeting in March.

Post-doctoral trainees (Ph.D. degree holders)

Background

India and Bangladesh generate a large number of scientists with a Ph.D. degree. Most of them go to other countries to pursue postdoctoral research. The research areas pursued by these individuals are dictated by which countries or laboratories they contact and availability of opportunities in those laboratories. To catalyze AIDS research in India and Bangladesh, one needs a program that can attract Ph.D. degree holders for post-doctoral training in the US, train them in the most advanced and current approaches to AIDS research, encourage them to return to India by helping them obtain a position in a research institute in India and Bangladesh and provide startup funds to establish their own research program in their home countries.

Please note that this is an unusual post-doctoral fellowship (limited availability), in which the fellow will conduct AIDS research that is relevant to home country on a problem chosen by him/her, home country mentor in consultation with the US mentor. A key requirement is that the candidate returns to home country and will be supported and aided by the AITRP in the fellow’s efforts to establish an independent research program even after the return.

Eligibility

Candidates with Ph.D. would be eligible (those with medical degrees must provide evidence of a strong aptitude for research and a significant level of past research experience). The candidates to be trained under this program could be those who performed HIV/AIDS or related research for their doctoral work or from laboratories that have already initiated collaborative research programs with the US scientists. Candidates from laboratories that have no collaborative programs currently, but are considering one will also be eligible. It is important to realize that the selected candidates will be performing collaborative research on the Indian AIDS problem and not research that is ongoing in the US laboratory. Successful candidates are required to provide evidence of employment in their home country and that they plan to return to India/Bangladesh for pursuing independent AIDS research.

Selection

Interested candidates must contact their research advisors in their home countries and should be sponsored by the advisor. Apply directly to the Director of the AITRP, Dr. Vinayaka R. Prasad.

How to apply

Einstein M.D. students

Please contact Dr. Vinayaka R. Prasad for details.

How to apply

  • First, one needs to select an appropriate US scientist working at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine (AECOM). If your advisor is not already collaborating with a faculty at AECOM, for research descriptions of all the faculty who are working on HIV/AIDS, TB and other opportunistic infectious agents of AIDS, please refer to the Participating US faculty page on this web site. If an Einstein faculty is of interest, but they are not listed in the participating faculty, you can still contact them for interest level first.
  • As the AECOM scientist will need to serve as a mentor for the duration of the visit, it is important that you choose the right advisor in consultation with your thesis advisor. Your thesis advisor will need to get in touch with the AECOM scientist and generate a consensus on the specific type of the collaboration and work out the specifics of the collaboration.
  • Once both the Indian and the US scientist are in agreement, please contact the Program Director, Dr. Vinayaka R. Prasad to establish mutual interest. Then submit the complete application as follows.
  • The application must be submitted as a single pdf file consisting of the following elements (in that order).
  1. A Sponsor letter by the thesis research mentor (for students, post-doctoral fellows and other junior staff) or Cover letter (if you are an independent scientist/Clinician) that highlights the key aspects of the application including the research project title, current position of the trainee in the home laboratory/research team, the trainee’s level of independence and the period of training requested (6 months for students or faculty visits, 1 to 2-years for post-doctoral fellows). In this cover letter, please include trainee’s date of birth, place of birth and the correct official form of the trainee’s name precisely as in the Indian passport.
  2. Your NIH biosketch using the PHS 398 NIH fillable form for the purpose (Biographical Sketch Format Page) that can be downloaded from the NIH website. All of the courses taken, grades obtained, any publications and any awards, current fellowships and grants should be listed.
  3. A 4-page biosketch of the thesis advisor, group leader or laboratory head. Must be on the NIH form as above. It is essential that all the publications and current grants are listed.
  4. A 3-page research project proposal (with the Project Title at the top) including the Goals of the proposed research (half page), Background (half page), Preliminary work already accomplished (half page), precisely what would be done under each goal listed above while at Einstein (1-page) the impact of the research training on building research capacity in the non-US laboratory (half page).
  5. For 2-Year degree-granting training and/or 1- or 2-Year post-doctoral training, a letter indicating a job in India from the Director of the institute should be included. Also need a 1-page statement of career goals upon how the candidate plans to utilize his/her training abroad in furthering the job function in such employment.
  6. Letters: For student, post-doc applicants and other junior staff, need three letters of recommendation from individuals, other than your sponsor/mentor, who served in advisorial fashion during the graduate training (members of a formal research advisory committee, Professor who taught a course that you took, other faculty involved in your research). For independent faculty/Clinicians, the letter can be from a Departmental Chair/Head or a senior colleague in your department as well as a letter from the Dean or Vice Chancellor permitting you to be absent from your position for the duration of your visit abroad.

 
 

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