Message from the Director

December 2023

I write this message at such an important time of the year and yet such a difficult time in world events. While this season can bring joy, it is hard to feel comfort while so many are experiencing devastating loss and turmoil. We must express gratitude for what we have and always remember to help in service to others. The faculty, staff, and leadership at Columbia University Medical Center continually work for the health and welfare of all individuals while educating future clinicians and supporting researchers for collective success. 

Muredach Reilly

Muredach P. Reilly, MBBCh, MSCE Director, Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research

The Irving Institute’s mission is to improve human health by supporting efficient and effective clinical and translational research at CUIMC. During this year we launched new services for investigators and welcomed two new faculty members to leadership roles within the institute. From our Biostatistics, Epidemiology and Research Design Resource (BERD), led by Dr. Shing Lee of the Mailman School of Public Health’s Department of Biostatistics, there is a suite of eleven new applications for data visualization and implementation of novel early phase clinical trials.  These free, user-friendly applications will help investigators at Columbia University and beyond to visualize their research data and conduct clinical trials using novel adaptive designs. BERD also created self-paced educational resources for our research workforce including an introductory statistical software mini-course, training guides for study coordinators, and a compilation of analytic and design topics for translational researchers. They have also launched a new framework to collaborate in a team science approach with promising investigators interested in applying novel clinical trial designs and machine learning methods in grant applications; the Innovative Design Alcove (IDEAL) program will open for applicants in Spring 2024. Additionally, the Irving Institute recently rolled out two new consultative services. The Recruitment and Retention consultation service offers multidisciplinary expertise to assist research teams in creating strategies and implementing plans to successfully retain and recruit participants. The Team Science consultation addresses the wide range of issues that can affect team dynamics, working with the consultee to formulate a plan for team cohesiveness. 

As you may have learned from Dean Armstrong’s recent announcement, Dr. Bernard Chang, Associate Dean for Faculty Health and Research Career Development, joined the Irving Institute this past October as an Associate Director and will help to develop a dynamic and inclusive strategy for wellbeing research that will positively impact all our programs, and the larger Columbia community. Additionally, as the new Associate Director of TRANSFORM, Dr. Chang is already contributing to new and exciting activities in our mentorship and education programs that I look forward to sharing with you in the new year. Dr. Chang’s appointment is of tremendous value to the Irving Institute and demonstrates Columbia’s commitment to enhancing pathways to nurture and advance careers of early and mid-career investigators. We have also gained the valuable leadership of Kellie Bryant, DNP,WHNP, CHSE, FAAN, as a new Associate Director of our Community Engagement Core Resource (CECR). As Associate Professor of Nursing, and Assistant Dean of Clinical Affairs and Simulation at Columbia University’s School of Nursing (CUSON), her experience in community health, as well as diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives at CUIMC, will help us expand professional pathways to diversify the healthcare workforce.    

Finally, as Vice Dean for Clinical and Translational Research, I have started reviewing the excellent work and recommendations that the VP&S strategic planning working groups finalized earlier this month. I look forward to working with Dean Armstrong on the implementation of strategic plan initiatives that leverage the strengths and experience of the Irving Institute as well as all partners at VP&S and CUIMC in support of clinical and translational research.  

With sincere appreciation for my teams’ and partners’ efforts in 2023, I wish everyone a peaceful holiday season and New Year. 

Muredach Reilly, MBBCh, MSCE
Director, Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research
Vice Dean for Clinical and Translational Research

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Previous messages from the Director: January 2023August 2022May 2022, 2019