The Medicine Endeavor to Nurture Trainees to Research Success (MENTORS) program is a Department of Medicine initiative to help research fellows maximize the opportunities of their research time.
Who Is It For?
All fellows in the Department of Medicine interested in research, including basic, clinical, translational, and health services research, are eligible. While the program is designed for fellows on a research track, we welcome fellows in their clinical year as their time permits. Participation during the clinical year before research time begins can prepare fellows to "hit the ground running" when they begin their research time, for instance by helping them identify mentors and develop ideas for research projects.
The MENTORS program provides fellows at Duke with a comfortable setting to develop professionally and interact with trainees from other disciplines engaged in research. It has been a great opportunity to receive valuable feedback from those less familiar with my research, and to learn from my peers’ ongoing research efforts in other specialties.
Robert Olivo, MD, Nephrology Fellow
What Does It Include?
The MENTORS program includes a Professional Development seminar series (group-based discussions led by a senior faculty member), Work-In-Progress presentations by the fellows with faculty and peer feedback, and meetings with the Directors of the MENTORS program to evaluate progress, goals and the mentor relationship. The Director, Deborah Fisher, MD, MHS, and the Co-Director, John Williams, MD, are established independent investigators with very strong mentorship records and leadership roles in fellowship programs.
The seminars and Work-In-Progress meetings are 1 hour per week from approximately October through June. The schedule from the last academic year is below. Most seminar topics are presented every other year. Each fellow presents a Work-In-Progress once during an academic year. Participation in WIP meetings, both as a presenter and as an audience member providing peer feedback is a critical component of MENTORS.
In addition, each fellow meets one-to-one with the Directors twice per year, in the fall and spring, to discuss progress towards short and long term goals, the primary mentor and mentorship team, and any questions or concerns about their research or career trajectory. The meeting and suggestions are summarized by the Directors and shared with the fellow, Division Fellowship Program Director, and the Division Chief. Fellows, Fellowship Directors and Chiefs have consistently reported the value of the meetings and summaries.
The MENTORS program is an excellent tool that a fellow can use to beneficially augment their translational research experience while at Duke and beyond. The faculty have significantly helped me to be set up for academic success.
Jeremy Force, D.O., Hematology/Oncology Fellow
What MENTORS Does Not Include
To avoid duplication with other programs, MENTORS does not provide instruction in research methodology, research ethics, clinical expertise in any specific content area, study design, statistics, grant writing, or manuscript preparation. We also do not provide internal review of grants. Each of these areas is covered either by the divisions' fellowship curricula or through other resources. The MENTORS Directors maintain a list of these resources, compiled by Heather Whitson, MD, both in the Department of Medicine and the School of Medicine, available here, and will continually inform fellows about such opportunities.
Additionally, MENTORS is providing information to fellows interested in the VA Health Administration Health Services Research and Development Career Development Award Program. Click here to read the evaluation report and view a five-part series that provides guidance on applying for VA HSRD CDA.
I already had a fantastic research mentor and initially was not sure how much additional benefit the MENTORS program would provide. However, participating in the MENTORS program (especially the individual meetings) taught me how to take a step back, refresh my short-term and long-term career goals, learn how to maintain current professional relationships and how to network, and gain a better perspective on balancing clinical and research responsibilities. Overall, the program was a "bonus" to my research training.
Vaishali Patel, MD, Gastroenterology Fellow
How Do I Join?
An introductory email is sent to all Department of Medicine fellows at the beginning of the academic year. Please respond to this letter with your intention to participate. Fellows who indicate their interest in participating will be sent an email survey regarding availability. Every attempt is made to choose a time that is available to the most participants.
Bookmark this page to keep up with activities and learn more about MENTORS.
Deborah Fisher, MD, MHS
Associate Professor of Medicine
John Williams, MD
Professor of Medicine and Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
|Christine Bates||Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine|
|Dan Blalock||VA HSR&D|
|Bridgette Christopher||Cardiovascular Disease|
|Emily Clausen||Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine|
|Jaime Hughes||VA HSR&D|
|Allison Lewinski||VA HSR&D|
|Joseph Lunyera||General Internal Medicine|
|Ko Ko Maung||Hematology-Oncology|
|Neelima Navuluri||Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine|
|Gedion Ngeno||Cardiovascular Disease|
|Megan Shepherd-Banigan||VA HSR&D|
MENTORS Class of 2016
|Anubha Agarwal||IM Residency Program|
|Bridgette Christopher||Cardiovascular Disease|
|Marion Hemersbach-Miller||Infectious Diseases|
|Andrew Strand||Infectious Diseases|
|MENTORS introduction||Corrine Voils, Deborah Fisher|
|Transition to Faculty and Job Negotiation||Cathy Wood|
|Mentoring and Collaborating from a Distance||Corrine Voils|
|Professional Networking||Yousuf Zafar|
|How to Give a Good Presentation (Debrief after videos)||Corrine Voils, Deborah Fisher|
|Orientation to Duke Library||Megan von Isenberg|
|WIP: Jeremy Force|
|Data Visualization||Angela Zoss|
|Orientation to Duke IRB||Cynthia Moylan|
|Reviewing Manuscripts||Heather Whitson|
|Media Training||Kevin Campbell|
|Preparing for Job Interview/Talk||Andrew Muir|
|How to Write a Letter of Support for Yourself and Others||Scott Palmer|
|Time Management||Peter Ubel|
|Writing Efficiently||Peter Ubel|
|Social Media to Enhance Your Career||Matthew Sparks|
|WIP: Yuval Patel|
|WIP: Megan Shepherd-Banigan|
|How to Lead a Meeting||Nicki Hastings|
|SCAP Science Culture and Accountability Plan||Richard Premont|
|WIP: Daniel Parker|
|How to Build an Effective Mentor/Mentee Relationship||Vance Fowler|
|WIP: Marion Hemmersbach-Miller|
|WIP: Anubha Agarwal|
|WIP: Robert Olivio|
|WIP: Laura Musselwhite|
|WIP: Jaime Hughes|
|WIP: Carol Traynor|
|WIP: Shannon Taylor|
|WIP: Melissa Makar|
|WIP: Bridgette Christopher|
I already had a mentor and research project planned before coming to Duke, but it was very helpful to have objective and supportive mentors outside my division. The lecturers were thought leaders at Duke and are great for new (or returning) fellows. The best part was having the opportunity to give a WIP presentation outside of my lab, division and group — it allowed me to refine my presentation for the next round.
Reilly Coch, MD, Endocrinology Fellow