The Irving Institute develops and oversees several programs and projects that emphasize workforce development.
Team science is one of the main tenets of many programs within TRANSFORM, the education and career development resource at the Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research. Over the past two grant cycles, we have further developed our multidisciplinary components within our KL2, TL1, and Masters of Science in Patient Oriented Research (MS-POR) programs. Beyond requiring all KL2 scholars and TL1 trainees to have interdisciplinary mentor teams, we meet with these mentor teams at least once a year to help develop Individual Development Plans (IDPs). Additionally, our KL2 scholars and MS-POR students are expected to take a one-semester course entitled, Building Interdisciplinary Research Models, in which attendees not only learn about developing meaningful interdisciplinary collaborations, but also apply concepts within their own research teams.
Highly skilled coordinators with regulatory and disease-specific knowledge translates into better research implementation and improved outcomes. The Irving Institute's Clinical Research Resource (CRR) developed a program and scalable model to support research coordinators in offsite high-risk units such as the NICU, PICU, ED and Neuro ICU. With no current consensus on the content of such research coordinator training in high-risk settings, the CRR outpatient unit manager implemented an onboarding and practicum for these coordinators. The program includes monthly hands-on training sessions on lab safety, phlebotomy, specimen handling, and EKG performance. Weekly meetings are held to review GCP and identification of protocol implementation issues. In addition, monthly seminars that are open to all Columbia University coordinators highlight available CTSA and hospital resources and provide skill-building opportunities for professional certification preparation and regulatory and financial knowledge.
The ISP Resource was created in 2016 to encourage and support collaborative cutting edge clinical research for diseases across the lifespan in four domains: HIV, geriatric, pediatric, and rare diseases. Our specific goals include addressing changes in the clinical environment reflecting the increasing pediatric presence of formerly adult diseases (e.g., type 2 diabetes) and pediatric-to-adulthood transitions of patients with formerly fatal pediatric diseases (e.g., cystic fibrosis). The ISP Resource facilitates relevant collaboration development, demonstration of broader research considerations, and dissemination of information to communities.
Our ISP team consists of 12 members representing community engagement and investigators across the four domains. Annually, we sponsor 6-10 seminars and 3-4 pilot awards for multidisciplinary studies of disease across the lifespan. Each pilot provides $40,000 and must include a young investigator and at least two of the ISP domains.