Fellows in the Division of Newborn Medicine can engage in a broad variety of research opportunities in perinatal epidemiology, outcomes research, clinical investigation, clinical trials, ethics, quality improvement, and medical education. The goal of the Fellowship Program’s research training is to provide a foundation for successful independent inquiry by focusing and developing research interests and skills in a supportive, collegial environment. Careful mentoring, structured didactic sessions, and regular research conferences can be supplemented with a wealth of resources from the UMASS Medical Center community, allowing each fellow's training to be tailored to individual goals.
Research endeavors begin in the first year, but are introduced gradually to accommodate clinical responsibilities. An initial orientation to the Division's research opportunities is followed by selection of an academic mentor. Fellows may choose their mentor from among the faculty of the Division of Newborn Medicine, other faculty in the Department of Pediatrics or other departments in the UMASS School of Medicine. Thereafter, fellows devote the remainder of their first year to acquiring greater familiarity with the literature and methods in their chosen area of research, and to initial investigations that focus on specific research interests and questions. Early projects provide the opportunity for training and experience in data management, analysis, and interpretation and the results may be used for initial efforts at preparation of abstracts and research presentations for peers within the Division. Fellows are encouraged to attend a regional and/or national research conference during the first year.
In the summer of the second year, all fellows will participate in coursework through the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences to develop skills in clinical biostatistics and epidemiology. All fellows will have the opportunity to obtain a sponsored Masters in Clinical Investigation during fellowship.
In the second and third years of fellowship, clinical responsibilities are reduced and there is an increased emphasis on research. Fellows acquire experience and training in data evaluation and interpretation. The second and third years also provide more focused training in preparation of abstracts and manuscripts, including integration of computer resources in academic work. During this phase of training, fellows are encouraged to undertake initial efforts at preparation of grants, and may begin pursuit of funds to extend structured research training into the future. During the second or third years, fellows are encouraged to present their research at regional and/or national conferences.