Orthopaedic clinician scholars generate significant contributions to the field of orthopaedics. Residents, fellows, and junior faculty considering a career in academic orthopaedics are turning to the AAOS for guidance and support as they embark on the journey to become a surgeon-scientist.
The AAOS Research Development Committee, in partnership with the Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation (OREF) and the Orthopaedic Research Society (ORS), sponsors an annual Clinician Scholar Development Program (CSDP), a 1.5 day training workshop aimed at pairing successful surgeon-scientist mentors with the future generation of clinician scholars.
“The CSDP was an incredible program that changed the way I thought about research and how I want to pursue research in my career as an orthopaedic surgeon,” said Antonia Chen, MD, a resident at the University of Pittsburgh who participated in the 2010 CSDP. That program addressed topics such as the clinician scholar timeline, funding opportunities, grant writing, collaboration with scientists, negotiating with department chairs, mentorship, and work/life balance.
“Being able to meet and learn from the most accomplished clinician scientists in orthopaedics was encouraging and helpful,” Dr. Chen said. “The lectures were highly informative about crucial topics that are not often presented in a meeting forum: funding opportunities, the grant process, starting off as a junior faculty, and others.”
In addition to the 15 AAOS-sponsored participants, the 2010 CSDP welcomed participants sponsored by several specialty orthopaedic societies. Unity among orthopaedic specialty enhances efforts to advance orthopaedic research, and ultimately, improve patient care. Nina Lightdale, MD, a 2010 CSDP participant sponsored by the American Society for Surgery of the Hand (ASSH), commented, “The CDSP program was very helpful. I have made great connections and will continue to support the combined efforts of the ASSH and AAOS.”
Connecting with mentors and establishing a collaborative relationship is one of the greatest benefits of program participation. The CSDP continues to develop a cadre of orthopaedic clinician scholars who will lead research efforts and develop new methodologies to treat orthopaedic related illnesses and injuries and advance musculoskeletal medicine. Promoting unity among orthopaedic specialties, the CSDP is a first step in the clinician scholar career path.
Applications for the 2011 AAOS/OREF/ORS Clinician Scholar Development Program are available online through March 31.