Office of Research Development
Early Stage Investigators
MUSC is committed to promoting the development and advancement of Early Stage Investigators. Institutional investments to help ESIs achieve success in their academic careers include the following:
SCTR Resources: MUSC’s South Carolina Clinical and Translational Research Institute (SCTR), one of NIH Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) Programs, offers substantial resources for Early Stage Investigators. SCTR’s Society of Clinical Research and Translational Early Scientists (SOCRATES), a mentoring forum for all mentor and mentee faculty, holds monthly meetings where junior investigators present their research proposals‐in‐development and get peer review feedback. Other SCTR resources include: (1) a robust Pilot Project Program that awards >$1 million dollars in seed funds for promising multi‐disciplinary clinical and translational research, enabling ESIs to form interdisciplinary, interactive and sustainable research networks and teams; (2) extensive support of clinical and translational research at MUSC, including biostatistical assistance and training, database management, an enterprise-wide clinical data warehouse (CDW), and biorepository for ready access to de-identified patient data and human samples, subject recruitment and retention, education and outreach activities, and other training and research opportunities; (3) a voucher program whereby investigators may request research related vouchers at any given time to pay for lab services, participant recruitment, biostatistical and epidemiological consultations, ethics consultations, and other research costs; and (4) internal and external scientific review of extramural grant applications.
Institutional Resources: MUSC’s Office of Research Development offers a full array of resources to guide early stage investigators towards research independence. These include: (1) Grantsmanship Workshops focusing on the Writing Success Grants that covered basic principles of good grant writing and Strategies for Success in Sponsored Research focusing on the relational issues to proposal writing (3) Individual and team consultations with external advisors and consultants; (4) Proposal Library, an on-line resource, is a repository of recent, successful proposals (e.g., NIH R01, K23, K08, U01) that will serve as a resource for MUSC investigators; and (5) Webinars, series of short training videos, demonstrate proposal development best practices.
Department Mentoring Plan: All academic departments are required to have a faculty mentoring plan based on each department’s unique resources and needs of the faculty, as well as mentoring champion(s) who work under the chair’s direction to implement and ensure the plan’s effectiveness. These plans provide junior faculty with a supportive environment encompassing skills, knowledge, and resources to achieve success and career satisfaction.