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Summer Program in Obesity, Diabetes and Nutrition Research Training (SPORT)

Program Information and Application Instructions

The Summer Program in Obesity, Diabetes and Nutrition Research Training (SPORT) is summer research internship for medical students only. The Program offers an intensive summer research experience and mentorship to successful applicants, as well as a stipend of approximately $5,800.  10 weeks are spent in continuous, full time research.  In addition, time is invested prior to the start of the program for prerequisite completion, as well as after the 10 week research period, finalizing and submitting a manuscript and completing program evaluations.  Housing and transportation are not included in the program. If necessary, on-campus parking can be arranged for the summer at a discounted daily student rate. 

The purpose of the SPORT program is to inspire passion toward research in diabetes, obesity and nutrition as well as to provide ongoing career, academic, research and clinical mentoring throughout medical school, with the ultimate goal of preparing participants for placement in competitive residency training programs leading to careers as independent physician scientists. Under the mentorship of one of the SPORT Program faculty, students will select an interesting research question in an obesity/nutrition-related area, and will work in the laboratory and/or clinical research setting to learn and perform state-of-the-art research to answer that question. Selection of three potential mentors is required at the time of application; final acceptance into the program is contingent upon successfully matching with a participating mentor.

Students will be required to present a summary of their work in a peer group setting, will prepare a manuscript of their work in the journal style appropriate to their field of research, and will receive a certificate upon satisfactory completion of the internship. In addition to intensive hands-on research experience, students will attend research conferences and seminars as well as weekly core lectures presented by faculty designed specifically for this program. The lectures will cover broad topics in diabetes, nutrition and obesity, and related chronic diseases. Program participants will also have the opportunity to shadow clinical faculty in both the inpatient and outpatient clinic setting (University of Maryland Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology, Endocrine Clinic, Surgery, Emergency Medicine, etc.).

The period of programming for Summer 2017 is May 30 through August 4, 2017.  SPORT students are required to commit to 10 weeks of full time research, as well as completion of prerequisites prior to the start of research. They will also spend time after the continuous 10 weeks of research, preparing a manucript of their project and completing program evaluations.  The exact dates of the research experience may be arranged with the mentor as long as the students fulfill the 10-week research requirement and participate in the summer programming.  SPORT students also have the opportunity to attend the National Medical Student Research Symposium held at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, August 2-3, 2017.

Major Summer Events 

The SPORT Program operates in conjunction with other University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) Summer Research Programs coordinated through the UMSOM Office of Student Research (OSR).

Below are the dates for 3 major summer events of the SPORT and OSR Programs.  Attendance is required for SPORT participants.   

  1. Orientation – Tuesday, May 30 (full day) and Wednesday, May 31 (half day, morning). 
    • Ethics Panel – morning of Wednesday, May 31.   
    • Responses to Ethics Reflections questions – due by Monday, June 12
  2. Mid-Summer Research Retreat – Thursday, June 29
  3. Student Research Forum – Friday, July 28
    • Preliminary Forum Registration – due by Friday, June 2 (including format choice of oral or poster)
    • Registration Updates - due by Wednesday, June 14 (format changes will not be accepted after this date)
    • Forum Abstracts – due by Friday, July 14

Other Activities 

  • Presentation Workshop - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 (optional but highly recommended)
  • Ice Cream Social - Friday, July 21, 2017, 3-5 pm (also optinal but highly recommended)

Application Information

We will accept ONLINE APPLICATIONS ONLY. Applications will be accepted until the deadline of 11:59 pm on Monday, January 9, 2017. The Online Application will allow you to include:

  • Your Completed SPORT Program Application
  • Your Essay Responses
  • A Resume/CV outlining your past education and research or other training
  • A Photo of Yourself (small file size please)
  • A Letter of Good Standing from your Medical School

The application consists of four Stages including: Personal Information (Stage I), Academic Information (Stage II), Recommendations (Stage III), and Short Essays (Stage IV). APPLICATION DEADLINE is 11:59 pm on Monday, January 9, 2017. The anticipated acceptance notification date for applicants is Monday, March 6, 2017.

Important: Please note that the two individuals that you identify as your references/recommenders will be contacted by the program AFTER you have submitted your application; their recommendations do not have to be submitted by the January deadline.  However, please do contact them before submitting your application for permission to include their names and contact information in your submitted application and to let them know to expect to be contacted by the SPORT program for a recommendation on your behalf.

For More Information

If you have any questions about the Program or application process, please contact:

Amanda Icenroad
Program Coordinator
Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Nutrition
University of Maryland, School of Medicine
660 W Redwood St, Howard Hall 495A
Baltimore, MD 21201

Thank you for your interest in the SPORT Program and good luck with your application.

The SPORT program is supported by the University of Maryland School of Medicine and NIH Grant T35DK095737.&