Medical Scientist Training Program
We participate in the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) sponsored jointly by Carnegie Mellon and the University of Pittsburgh. The mission of the MSTP, funded partly by the National Institutes of Health, seeks to train talented students to become physician-scientists in an environment that integrates superlative medical education and customized graduate work in biomedical research. Interested students should apply to CPCB either concurrently with their MSTP application or during the first two years of their medical training. Applications to CPCB are reviewed by the program's admissions committee. Upon acceptance to CPCB, students choose a faculty mentor for their Ph.D. studies from among our training faculty.
Laboratory Rotations - Selecting a Research AdvisorMSTP students are not required but are encouraged to participate in laboratory rotations with CPCB faculty. This can be done in the summer before they join the MSTP program and/or in the summer semester of their first year in the MSTP. After their acceptance to the CPCB and before the end of the second year in the MSTP program, the student chooses a training faculty mentor with whom to complete their thesis work.
CourseworkAfter joining CPCB, MSTP students are required to take four courses (Machine Learning, Computational Structural Biology, Computational Genomics and Cell & Systems Modeling) and two graduate level elective courses (Specialization elective and Quantitative elective) during their studies. The description of the courses and lists of elective courses can be found here. MSTP students are also required to participate in Research Seminars and Journal Clubs organized by the program. The elective courses, relevant to the student's research, are chosen by the student in discussion with their faculty advisor. Additional coursework may be undertaken if appropriate. The following four courses are waived for the MSTP students: Laboratory methods, Life Sciences Elective, Open Elective, and Ethics. However, the MSTP has their own ethics course, "Ethics for Medical Scientists," which is required.
All graduate students attend the Departmental Research Seminar and participate in the weekly Graduate Research Seminar (Journal Club). These series comprise a variety of presentations by outside scientists, Carnegie Mellon faculty and students, permitting a penetrating look at varied scientific disciplines and contemporary investigative approaches. Students also attend various informal seminars whose topics range from scientific integrity and ethics to professional development.