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Iowa Medical Student Research Program

Director: Robert Roghair, MD
Coordinator: Erin Mullins, MA

The Iowa Medical Student Research Program (IMSRP) encourages medical students to participate in research experiences and to continue their engagement with scientific research throughout medical school and beyond. More than 250 faculty members have been involved and serve as potential research mentors for interested students and more than 200 students have graduated with Research Distinction.

The IMSRP is overseen by the Medical Student Research Council, composed of physicians and biomedical researchers from throughout CCOM who have volunteered to assist with activities, judge presentations, and monitor student progress and the integrity of the Research Distinction Track.

Meet some of our students
First-year medical student
Ian McElree
Second-year medical student Anthony Piscopo Third-year medical student Stephanie Saey Fourth year medical student Soham Ali

Iowa Medical Student Research Program Opportunities

  • The Summer Research Fellowship Program allows pre-M1 (newly admitted) and M1 students to participate in a summer research project of their choosing with a faculty mentor here at the Carver College of Medicine. Students are paid a stipend to help cover their living costs while working on the project. Information about the Fellowship Program is disseminated through email announcements, the medical student Research Interest Group, and announcements at events throughout the year.
  • The Medical Student Research Conference is an opportunity for the Carver College of Medicine community to enjoy learning about research projects conducted by medical students in the college. Events include both oral and poster research presentations. Presentations are judged by physician-scientists, biomedical researchers and faculty who score the quality of the presentations. Recognition for best research presentations in various categories is noted through awarding of certificates and nominal cash award at an invited banquet following the presentations.
  • The Research Distinction Track (RDT) is designed for students to participate in mentored research throughout the four years of medical school. Students admitted to the track exhibit excellence in research, including presentation of research at meetings and writing of research results in manuscript form. This distinction track is mentioned in the student's Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE) Letter for residency programs if the student is on-track to complete all program requirements by the beginning of the M4 year. Mention is also noted on the academic transcript and in the graduation program.

Medical Student Research Interest Group

The medical student Research Interest Group (RIG) is a student-run organization. All medical students are invited to participate in RIG-sponsored events.

Year Out Research Programs

A few students choose to complete a year-long research program while in medical school. Students can chose from on- or off-campus options, including the following:

  • The Emory Warner Pathology Research Fellowship offers students an opportunity to participate in a year-long research project exploring the cellular and molecular basis of disease.
  • The Howard Hughes Medical Institute offers 2 one-year programs in which students may participate in research at the Cloister in Bethesda, Maryland, or at any HHMI-accredited institute in the United States. (this program has been suspended beyond 2019)
  • The Sarnoff Medical Student Research Fellowship Program offers students an opportunity to participate in a year-long research project in cardiovascular research. For more information, please contact Ms. Dana Boyd, Executive Director at dboyd@SarnoffFoundation.org.
  • The Wellstone Muscular Dystrophy Medical Student Fellowship offers a year of research to conduct translational research in muscular dystrophy in the Howard Hughes Medical Institute at Carver College of Medicine.
  • The NIH Medical Research Scholars Program offers a 12-month training program designed for students who are U.S. citizens and permanent residents who have a strong interest in conducting basic, clinical, translational, or population health research and are currently enrolled in their 2nd, 3rd, or 4th year at an accredited medical, dental, or veterinary program.
  • The American Society of Hematology offers a year-long opportunity for medical students to gain experience in hematology research under ASH member mentors.