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Johns Hopkins Alzheimer's Disease Resource Center for Minority Aging Research

Research Education Component

Hughes Poster From Annual Directors Meeting

The Research Education Component (REC) empowers RCMAR Scientists to be successful with developing and carrying out pilot projects and includes a continuing mentoring component modeled on successful and proven mentoring programs, working closely with the other Cores.

The REC largely focuses its efforts to build an infrastructure necessary to recruit, develop, and support under-represented minority investigators. This will yield a more diverse biomedical workforce by building the capacity of a cadre of new investigators from under-represented backgrounds who are committed to a research portfolio focused on health disparities and minority aging research as it relates to Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders (ADRD). The Core is co-led by Joseph J. Gallo, MD. MPH, Professor in the Department of Mental Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Marilyn Albert, PhD, Professor and Director of the Division of Cognitive Neuroscience in the Department of Neurology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Director of the Johns Hopkins Alzheimer's Disease Research Center. Drs. Gallo and Albert bring research and mentoring expertise to the Core evidenced by: Dr. Gallo’s expertise in epidemiology of psychiatric disorders, the co-morbidity of depression and medical conditions, and cognitive impairment, and Dr. Albert’s expertise in the area of cognitive change with age, disease-related changes of cognition (with a particular focus on AD), and the relationship of cognitive change to brain structure and function, as assessed through imaging. As it relates to mentoring, Dr. Gallo serves as a mentor in NIMH’s Advanced Research Institute and directs the Mixed Methods Research Training Program for the Health Sciences; and Dr. Albert directs the NIA-funded Research Training in Aging and Dementia Training Program.

The overarching objective of the Research Education Component is to provide a carefully structured curriculum and a comprehensive and innovative mentoring mechanism leading to enduring careers of under-represented investigators in health disparities and minority aging as it relates to Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders (ADRD) research, focusing on the epidemiology of dementia and the development, testing, translation, and implementation of novel interventions for diverse individuals and their care providers to enhance health and functioning in minority populations.

Research Education Component Core Aims

  1. Provide a structured curriculum to prepare RCMAR Scientists to become independent investigators with an extramurally funded research portfolio focusing on eliminating disparities in ADRD.

  2. Provide structured longitudinal mentorship for RCMAR Scientists to support independent, NIA-funded research careers focused on health disparities and ADRD research among older adults, particularly minority elderly.

  3. Implement a pilot grants program with three new innovative projects per year aimed to provide a robust context for training and to contribute to the science of eliminating disparities in ADRD among older adults, particularly minority elderly.

  4. Develop and maintain a process for facilitating and tracking the evolution of mentees from pilot to independent investigators, by collaborating with the RCMAR National Coordinating Center at UCLA and participating in a semi-annual reporting procedure.