Investigator Award to Support Mentoring of Diverse Early Career Researchers

May 2021 Council

Lead Division/Office


Point(s) of Contact

Christine Lee, M.D., M.S.; Tracy Rankin, Ph.D., M.P.H.; Katrina Serrano, Ph.D.; David Saslowsky, Ph.D.

Executive Summary

Effective mentoring is critical for successful career advancement in academic biomedical research, particularly at early career stages where budding investigators begin to formulate their research focus, develop insights, and needed scientific skill sets. Researchers from underrepresented groups (URGs) typically receive less mentoring than non-minority peers (Beech et al. 2013) and augmentation of mentoring programs is needed to help overcome challenges faced by URG students, trainees, and faculty. A need for increased mentoring of early career stage URG researchers to sustain their career pathway(s) has also been highlighted at the NIH special ACD meeting on racial equity (2021), at NIDDK Advisory Council Meetings, in NIDDK Strategic Plan Working Groups, in the NIDDK Office of Minority Health and Research Coordination (OMHRC), and among thought leaders external to NIH. This new initiative would fill a current gap in NIDDK programs by supporting dedicated effort for established investigators conducting research within NIDDK’s missions to provide effective mentoring for URG scholars.