SOT Partners in ToxMSDT for Undergraduate Training: Call for Student Applications

By Jodi Flaws posted 04-15-2021 14:30


SOT is a partner in a NIH-funded mentoring and training project to increase the number of students from underrepresented groups on the pathway to careers in toxicology and the biomedical sciences. The Toxicology Mentoring Skills Development Training program (ToxMSDT), based at University of California Davis (UCD), is a multi-institutional collaborative national training program.

Recruitment is now underway for the 2021–2022 cohort of 25 undergraduates, with applications due May 1. Mentor applications will be available soon and are due June 1, 2021. Please pass this invitation to apply to potential student and mentor participants.

Student eligibility criteria include:

  • STEM major
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • At least a second-year undergraduate student
  • Completion of at least one semester of general biology and general chemistry
  • Currently enrolled in an accredited undergraduate institution and continuing enrollment for the 2021–2022 academic year
  • Member of a group underserved in the biomedical sciences (for example, underrepresented racial/ethnic groups; those from disadvantaged backgrounds such as low socioeconomic status or having grown up in a rural or inner-city setting; see NIH notice)
  • US citizen or US permanent resident

Students apply using the Student Application and request that an academic mentor complete the Reference Form before the May 1, 2021, deadline.

A unique aspect of the ToxMSDT one-year program is that students complete it while at their home institutions. Each student is paired 1:1 with a toxicology mentor in an area of the student’s interest. As part of the mentoring relationship, the student will shadow the mentor on the job. The cost of travel and board is provided to the student for the job-shadowing as well as to attend a workshop at UCD at the beginning of the experience and the capstone event at Tuskegee University at the program conclusion next May. ToxMSDT students also will receive support to attend the 2022 SOT Annual Meeting. Toxicology training for the students will include the online toxicology modules developed as part of the program.

The current grant, with Dr. Rumbeiha and myself as co-PIs, is for five years and includes four other institutions in addition to UCD and SOT. In addition to the training of the four cohorts of students, during this time, 10 toxicology modules will be developed to add to the five that were created during the pilot project. Current modules include Pathophysiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, Genetic Toxicology, Applied Systems Toxicology, and Regulatory Toxicology. ToxMSDT also is the new host for the NLM-created ToxTutor.