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Alumni Programs | Medical School

Medical School student research grants

Medical Alumni Society Awards Program


Medical School student research grants

UMF encourages innovative research by Medical School students and awards grants to students pursuing basic, clinical, or community-based research interests. The goal of this program is to encourage medical students to conduct independent, mentored, academic research using a protocol of their own design.

Two types of awards are available:

  • $4,000 grants to third- and fourth-year students for 12 weeks of research during free or elective periods. Applications are received three times a year: the first Friday in January, May 1 and September 1. Applicants are informed of the committee’s decision within six weeks from the submission date.
  • $3,000 grants to first-year students for research to begin during the summer after Year One and to be completed before the end of Year Two. Applications are received once annually on February 15. Applicants are informed of the committee’s decision within approximately six weeks from the submission date.

To qualify for funding, the research must be basic science bench research, clinicial research that involves direct patient observation and/or treatment or community-based research that involves data acquisition by students. Students who hold or are pursuing a Ph.D. degree, including M.D.-Ph.D. students, are ineligible.

Grants are paid to recipients through the Office of Student Finance as personal income and are taxable. Grants may not be used to replace previously committed department funds.

Program policies and guidelines

The following policies and guidelines apply:

  1. Students in good academic standing who are enrolled in the University of Minnesota Medical School in the Twin Cities or Duluth may apply by completing the Application for Student Research Grant. Applications are received and checked by the University of Minnesota Foundation to ensure all application requirements have been met. They are then forwarded to the Medical Student Grant Research Committee for review. The committee determines who the award recipients will be. A student can receive a maximum of two $4000 grants for 12 weeks of research.
  2. Projects for Year 1 students ($3,000 grants) must begin during the summer between Years 1 and 2 and be completed before the end of Year 2 classes. A 12-week project ($4,000 grants for Year 3 and 4 students) need not be conducted over 12 consecutive weeks, but a schedule envisioning the use of two or more consecutive rotations will normally create the best potential for substantive work. The customary maximum for 12-week projects is 6 months. Projects requiring more than 12 months to complete will not be considered.
  3. A Medical School faculty member must serve as project supervisor. The supervisor will provide guidance in choosing a project and may assist in writing the proposal. (Although cutting and pasting sections from a mentor’s grant application is not acceptable. See a sample protocol below.) The supervisor will also provide, as needed, laboratory facilities, equipment, and supplies. The two most critical factors in obtaining a grant are (1) a letter from the project supervisor commenting on the candidate’s proposal and the candidate’s aptitude, and providing a precise and complete description of the candidate’s role in the project and the nature of the questions to be addressed; and (2) a statement by the applicant, in the body of the proposal, indicating exactly what the applicant will be doing and how the applicant will benefit. The applicant’s role must be clearly explained in the application and be central to the nature and success of the project.A faculty member can only serve as a mentor for a maximum of two Year 1-2 research students ($3,000 grants) at any time.
  4. Projects must be designed and conducted primarily by the student with supervision and input by mentors. They must include rigorous methodology whether laboratory-based, epidemiological or health services-related. Proposals that do not clearly establish that the applicant has a central role will not be funded.
  5. A limited number of $500 Medical School Supplemental Research Awards are available to support laboratory-associated costs of student projects involving heart research or cardiovascular disorders. Off-campus laboratories are ineligible for this supplemental award. To be considered, the student’s faculty supervisor should include in the letter of support a request for a Medical School Supplemental Research Award and an explanation of the project’s relationship to heart research or cardiovascular disorders.
  6. A Medical School Student Affairs or Curriculum Affairs dean must sign the application form.
  7. The application packet must include the grant application, a brief resume or Curriculum Vitae, and a letter from the project supervisor. The original, signed documents and 6 copies of all materials must be submitted.
  8. A final progress report will be required from every grantee following the end of the research period. For $4,000 grants the report will be due within four weeks after the 12 week research period is completed. For $3,000 grants the report will be due on the last official date of the student’s Year 2 classes. The report should be submitted using the Student Grant Final Progress Report Form. The responsibility for submitting the final report rests with both the grantee and the faculty mentor. Until the final report is received by UMF, the student will not be eligible for any additional UMF research grants and the faculty mentor will not be allowed to mentor another student holding a UMF medical student research grant.

Sample protocol

Preparation of Activated Anti-Tumor Cells by Dendritic Cell Peptide Presentation

MMF Student Research Grant Application
Jane Doe

Introduction

As the role of the host immune system in tumor immunosurveillance is elucidated, increasing attention is being given to targeted immunotherapy as a promising cancer treatment. It is known that tumors express antigens which can induce host immune responses under experimental conditions. Yet tumor-reactive T cells are rarely found in vivo. The development of cytotoxic T cells depends on the action of activated antigen presenting cells, such as dendritic cells. Antigenic tumor peptides must be presented within the context of MHC class I molecules with appropriate co-stimulatory molecules. It has been hypothesized that the lack of T cell response in cancer patients may result from a deficiency of functional dendritic cells. (1) In animal models the reinfusion of dendritic cells which have been treated with tumor antigens has been shown to induce specific immunity, leading in some cases to a decrease in tumor mass. (2)

The hypothesis to be evaluated with this project is: Can anti-tumor cytotoxic T lymphocytes be generated by dendritic cell presentation of breast cancer peptides? The first goal will be to determine whether immature human dendritic cells derived from bone marrow precursors can be primed with tumor proteins to become mature cells which present processed peptides to autologous T cells. Secondly, the development of T cell cytotoxic activity against the breast cancer targets and IFN? production will be measured to determine whether the dendritic cells can successfully activate specific immunity in the T cells. The work described will be done exclusively by the applicant, with assistance from personnel in the [mentor’s] laboratory.

Goals

  1. Prepare a membrane lysate from an HLA-A2 breast cancer cell line, MCF-7.
  2. Purify immature dendritic cells from the bone marrow of an HLA-A2 donor.
  3. Purify T cells from the peripheral blood of the same donor.
  4. Verify the activated status of the dendritic cells after they have been pulsed with the membrane preparation.
  5. Grow autologous T cells in coculture with the activated dendritic cells.
  6. Determine whether the T cells become activated to proliferate and produce IFN?.
  7. Determine whether the T cells develop cytotoxic activity against the breast cancer target cells.

Methods

  1. Breast cancer cells will be lysed to form a preparation of tumor cell membranes.
  2. Dendritic cells will be grown from bone marrow derived progenitors. CD34 cells will be isolated from bone marrow by immunofluorescence. The stem cells will be cultured with GM-CSF, IL-4, and TNF to induce the differentiation of dendritic cells.
  3. T cells will be purified from peripheral blood.
  4. The dendritic cells will be primed by pulsing them with the breast cancer cell membrane preparation. (4)
  5. The transformation of dendritic cells from immature antigen-capturing cells to mature antigen presenting cells will be assessed by phenotyping with monoclonal antibody staining for CD54, CD40, CD80, CD83, CD86 and MHC molecules. The expression of these cell surface antigens increases with maturation. (5)

References

  1. Chaux P, Moutet M, Faivre J, Martin F, Martin M. (1996), Lab. Invest. 74, 975-983.
  2. Schuler G, Steinman R. (1997) J. Exp. Med. 186, 1183-1187.
  3. Romani N, et al. (1996) J. Immunol. Meth. 196. 137-151.
  4. Paglia P, Chiodoni C, Rodolfo M, Colombo M (1996). J. Exp. Med, 183, 87-97.
  5. Banchereau J, Steinman R. (1998) Nature, 392, 245-252.


Awards Program

Each spring, the Medical Alumni Society board of directors selects recipients for the following awards:

Harold S. Diehl Award, granted to individuals who have made outstanding professional contributions to the Medical School, the University, and the community.

Distinguished Alumni Award, which recognizes University of Minnesota Medical School graduates and resident alumni who have made outstanding contributions to their communities—at the local, regional, or national level—through medical practice, teaching, research, or other humanitarian activities.

Early Distinguished Career Alumni Award, given to a physician for exceptional accomplishments within 15 years of graduating from or completing their residency at the University of Minnesota Medical School.

Alumni Philanthropy and Service Award, given to University of Minnesota Medical School graduates and resident alumni who have made significant medical contributions to their particular field of practice, as well as contributed or leveraged significant philanthropic support of the Medical School.

Learn more about the 2014 alumni award recipients below.

We are currently seeking nominations for the 2015 alumni awards. Nominations should include: primary letter of nomination, at least one supporting letter of nomination, and a CV or detailed account of the nominee’s accomplishments. Nominations for the Harold S. Diehl Award are held on file for five years. Nominations for the Distinguished Alumni Award, Early Distinguished Career Alumni Award, and Alumni Philanthropy and Service Award are not held after recipients are chosen each year.

To submit a nomination for one of these awards, please compile all appropriate nomination materials as detailed above and forward them to:

Awards Committee Chair University of Minnesota Medical Alumni Society McNamara Alumni Center 200 Oak Street SE, Suite 500 Minneapolis, MN 55455-2030

Nominations may also be e-mailed to roth0103@umn.edu. All nominations must be received by May 1, 2015.

Awards will be presented at the Medical School Alumni Awards Banquet on Thursday, September 17, 2015.


2014 Medical Alumni Society Alumni Award Recipients

Four University of Minnesota Medical School alumni were honored for their work in the service of the medical profession at the Medical School Alumni Awards Banquet on Thursday, September 18, at the McNamara Alumni Center.

The Harold S. Diehl Award is granted to individuals who have made outstanding professional contributions to the Medical School, the University, and the community. It was established in honor of the Medical School’s fifth dean, Harold Sheely Diehl, M.D.

SHARON S. ALLEN, M.D.

After completing her family practice residency at the University of Minnesota in 1981, Dr. Allen began her career as a professor with the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, where she quickly became a well-respected, compassionate, and devoted teacher and mentor. All the while, she has continued to see patients and build an impressive research catalog. A tireless educator, Dr. Allen has generously contributed to the scholarship of medical students for over 30 years, and her impact on the physician work force has been profound. Students and patients around the world have benefited from her energy, determination, intellect, and commitment to education.

The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes University of Minnesota Medical School alumni who have made outstanding contributions to their communities—at the local, regional, or national level—through medical practice, teaching, research, or other humanitarian activities.

ROBERT H. BOSL, M.D.

A member of the Medical School Class of 1979, Dr. Bösl has served the small west central Minnesota town of Starbuck since 1982, and is now the city’s only physician. When the local hospital closed in 2005, Dr. Bösl and his wife, Vickie, took out a home loan and invested their retirement savings to build a modern clinic so the town would continue to have access to care locally. Before attending medical school, he served as a medical corpsman in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War, earning a Purple Heart and Bronze Star, among several other military honors.

MARK L. JACOBSON, M.D., M.P.H.

After a transformative trip to Africa as a first-year medical student, Dr. Jacobson has compassionately and skillfully devoted his career to improving health for the people of Tanzania. Besides employing community-level strategies to improve water quality, nutrition, and sanitation practices, Dr. Jacobson also opened Selian Lutheran Hospital and Arusha Lutheran Medical Center in Tanzania to meet the region’s health care demands. In addition, this 1978 Medical School graduate has hosted more than 30 University of Minnesota medical students who were completing international rotations, and many have called their experience “life-changing.”

The Early Distinguished Career Alumni Award is given to a physician for exceptional accomplishments within 15 years of graduating from or completing their residency at the University of Minnesota Medical School.

BRADLEY J. BENSON, M.D.

A leader by example and a consummate physician, Dr. Benson’s passion for teaching and clinical excellence came together when he became director of the University’s Medicine-Pediatrics Residency Program in 2002. In this role, he guided and mentored nearly 100 residents through their four years of residency training. Now director of the Department of Medicine’s Division of General Internal Medicine, Dr. Benson, a 1999 resident alumnus, has also built and led an outstanding academic hospitalist program. And notably, he has developed competency measures for doctors-in-training that are now used throughout the United States and Canada.


Harold S. Diehl Award

The Harold S. Diehl Award was established in 1962 to honor the fifth dean of the Medical School Harold Sheely Diehl, M.D.. This prestigious lifetime award is granted to individuals who have made outstanding professional contributions to the Medical School, the University, and the community.

Nominees should:

  • Be graduates of the University of Minnesota Medical School *
  • Not be currently employed in an academic capacity *
  • Have made outstanding contributions to the University of Minnesota Medical School, the University, alumni, and the community
  • Have significant experience in the field of medical service or a related field
  • Preferred but not required

Past recipients

2014
Sharon S. Allen, M.D., Ph.D.

2013
James H. House, M.D.,’63
Glen D. Nelson, M.D., ‘63

2012
Brian C. Campion, M.D.,’62
David A. Rothenberger, M.D.

2011
John H. Kersey, M.D., ‘64
Mark E. Nesbit, Jr., M.D.

2010
James H. Moller, M.D.
Robert F. Premer, M.D., ‘50

2009
Forrest H. Adams, M.D., ‘43
Roby C. Thompson Jr., M.D.

2008
Lester Breslow, M.D., M.P.H.
John V. Thomas, M.D.

2007
John P. Delaney, M.D., Ph.D, ‘55
A. Stuart Hanson, M.D., ‘63
Fred. A. Lyon, M.D. ‘57

2006
George L. Adams, M.D.
Raymond G. Christensen, M.D.
Ernest Ruiz, M.D.
Warren J. Warwick, M.D.

2005
M. Thomas Stillman, M.D., ‘64
James G. White, M.D., ‘55

2004
James G. Boulger, Ph.D.
Robert Goodale Jr., M.D., Ph.D.
Naip Tuna, M.D.

2003
Malcolm A. McCannel
Alfred F. Michael
John E. Verby Jr. ‘47

2002
Henry Buchwald William H. Knobloch

2001
Arthur C. Aufderheide, ‘46
Mildred S. Hanson, ‘51

2000
H. Mead Cavert, ‘50
Richard M. Magraw, ‘43

1999
B. J. Kennedy, ‘45
C. Walton Lillehei, ‘41
Ben P. Owens, ‘47

1998
Jesse E. Edwards
John B. Sanford, ‘48

1997
Joyce L. Funke, ‘50
Thomas A. Stolee, ‘58

1996
Stanley Goldberg, ’56
Severin H. Koop Jr., ’55

1995
Stanton A. Hirsh, ’45
Melvin E. Sigel, ’56

1994
Tague Clement Chisholm
N. L. “Neal” Gault Jr., ’50

1993
Howard B. Burchell
John I. Coe, ’45

1992
Frederic J. Kottke,
’45 William A. O’Brien Jr., ’46

1991
Dorothy Bernstein
Irving C. Bernstein, ’42

1990
M. Elizabeth “Peggy” Craig,
’45 John P. Stapp, ’43

1989
Howard L. Horns, ’43
Austin M. McCarthy, ’42

1988
Chester A. Anderson, ’44
Robert B. Howard, ’44
Arnold J. Kremen, ’37

1987
Marcy L. Ditmanson, ’54
Malcolm M. Fifield, ’50

1986
A. Boyd Thomes, ’42

1985
Kenneth W. Covey, ’43
Frank E. Johnson, ’43

1984
Arnold S. Anderson, ’43
John W. Anderson, ’51

1983
John J. Eustermann
John J. Regan Sr., ’43

1982
Stuart Lane Arey, ’31
Kristofer Hagen, ’42

1981
Eva Jane (Ostergren) Larson, ’38
Carl Ragnar Wall, ’28

1980
Helen L. Knudsen, ’43
Donald E. Stewart, ’37

1979
Miland E. Knapp, ’29
Harold E. Wilmot, ’23

1978
Lester H. Bendix, ’28
Herman E. “Tiny” Drill, ’29

1977
Ruth E. Boynton, ’20
Virgil J. P. Lundquist, ’42

1976
Milton M. Hurwitz, ’39
Leonard Lang, ’28
Russell O. Sather, ’32

1975
Reuben Berman, ’32
Bror F. Pearson, ’31
Lawrence Richdorf, ’20

1974
Ann Arnold
Roger A. MacDonald, ’46
Carl O. Rice, ’25
R.S. Ylvisaker, ’26

1973
Phillip Halenbeck
Olga Hansen Litzenberg, ’15

1972
J. Richards Aurelius, ’22
Barbara M. Puumala, ’59
Marie Bepko Puumala
Reino Puumala
Ricard R. Puumala, ’59

1971
William C. Bernstein, ’27
J. C. Grant, ’42

1970
Robert N. Barr, ’30
LeRoy J. Larson, ’20

1969
Karl R. Lundeberg, ’25

1968
Walter H. Halloran, ’15
Anderson C. Hilding, ’18
Carl H. Holmstrom, ’29

1967
Theodore R. Fritsche, ’30

1966
J. Arthur Myers, ’20

1965
Karl W. Anderson, ’23

1964
Vernon D.E. Smith, ’30

1963
Donald J. Cowling
Charles G. Sheppard, ’35

1962
Owen H. Wangensteen, ’21


Distinguished Alumni Award

The Distinguished Alumni Award, formerly known as the Alumni Recognition Award, recognizes University of Minnesota Medical School graduates who have made outstanding contributions to their communities—at the local, regional, or national level—through medical practice, teaching, research, or other humanitarian activities. Nominees should be graduates of the University of Minnesota Medical School.

Past recipients

2014
Robert H. Bosl, M.D., ‘79
Mark L. Jacobson, M.D., M.P.H., ‘78

2013
Marvin E. Ament, M.D., ‘63
Charles E. Crutchfield, M.D., ‘63

2012
Joseph C. Kolars, M.D., ‘82
Robert D. Letson, M.D., ‘52
Elizabeth R. Seaquist, M.D., ‘82

2011
Donald R. Schimnoski, M.D., ‘46
Paul A. Severson, M.D., ‘78

2010
Bonita E. Falkner, M.D., ‘67
Robert L. Sadoff, M.D., ‘59

2009
Louis J. Ling, M.D., ‘80
Patricia B. Wolff, M.D., ‘72
James O. Woolliscroft, M.D., ‘76

2008
Dale C. Betterton, M.D., ‘73
Leif I. Solberg, M.D., ‘63

2007
Marvin Goldberg, M.D., ‘53
Karen Olness, M.D., ‘61

2006
William E. Jacott, M.D., ‘64
John E. Repine, M.D., ‘71

2005
Richard F. Edlich, M.D., Resident Alumnus, Surgery ‘71
John F. Greden, M.D., ‘67

2004
Michael B. Belzer, M.D., ‘74
Robert J. Desnick, M.D., ‘71

2003
Michael A. Maddaus, ‘82
C. Gail Summers, ‘79

2002
James H. House, ‘63
Audrey M. Nelson, ‘65

2001
Charles I. Benjamin, ‘65

2000
Paul S. Sanders, ‘70
Valerie K. Ulstad, ‘82

1999
Richard L. Stennes, ‘69

1998
June M. LaValleur, ‘87


Early Distinguished Career Award

The Early Distinguished Career Alumni Award is given to a physician for exceptional accomplishments within 15 years of graduating from the University of Minnesota Medical School. Nominees shall have made exceptional achievements in medicine or the medical community or significant contributions to the University of Minnesota Medical School

Past recipients

2014
Bradley J. Benson, M.D., Resident Alumnus ‘99

2013
David R. Hilden, M.D., M.P.H., ‘00

2008
Arne Vainio, M.D., ‘94

2007
John Y. Song, M.D., M.P.H., M.A.T., Resident Alumnus ’94

2006
Jon S. Hallberg, M.D., ’92

2005
Karyn D. Baum, M.D., Resident Alumna, ’98

2004
Gregory A. Plotnikoff, M.D., ’89


Alumni Philanthropy and Service Award

The Alumni Philanthropy and Service Award recognizes University of Minnesota Medical School graduates who have made significant medical contributions to their particular field of practice, as well as significant philanthropic support of the University of Minnesota Medical School.

Past recipients

2012
Richard A. Carlson, M.D.
Arthur C. Klassen, M.D.

2011
Martin A. Segal, M.D.

2010
James H. House, M.D.
Arnold S. Leonard, M.D.
Richard L. Lindstrom, M.D.

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