Two physician-scientists from Medicine receive SOM Strong Start Awards

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Two faculty members from the Department of Medicine have been selected to receive 2021 Physician-Scientist “Strong Start” awards from the School of Medicine. Six faculty across the School were selected for 2021 awards.

The School of Medicine created the awards program in 2016, funded with a gift from the Duke Endowment, to support promising, new physician-scientists at Duke as they develop independent research programs. Each recipient will receive $75,000 annually for three years to support their research programs.

2020 Strong Start Award Recipients from Medicine

The Strong Start program is administered by the School of Medicine’s Office for Physician-Scientist Development (OPSD) and integrates with several physician-scientist development programs including the Medical Scientist Training Program (MD-PhD students) and the Lefkowitz Society (clinical residents and fellows).

“The Strong Start program has already demonstrated remarkable success, facilitating awardees’ transition to independence, with more than 95% of award recipients engaged in laboratory-based research. Previous Strong Start scholars have secured 15 new grants cumulatively, including 9 NIH “R” awards,” said Rasheed Gbadegesin, MD, associate dean for physician scientist development in the School of Medicine. “This success would not have been possible without the extraordinary support of Dean Klotman and her visionary leadership in establishing the Office of Physician-Scientist Development (OPSD). We also recognize the Duke Endowment for the generous investment they have made in the biomedical research workforce at Duke. Congratulations to the impressive Strong Start class of 2021! We look forward to following your exciting science and discoveries in the coming years.”

Twenty-three faculty members have received funding from the program since its inception. The early outcomes of the Strong Start Award Program demonstrate that this investment enables promising individuals to launch successful careers that balance research and clinical care.