The mentoring and workforce development pre-Core (MWDP) has two primary functions

  1. Nurturing the mentoring skills of ACCORD junior investigators
  2. Develop pipeline programs to cultivate the future generations of biomedical sciences researchers interested in WV/CA health disparities.

Mentoring Skills:

Mentoring skills are an often underappreciated part of an academic scientist’s portfolio and not all graduate students have received appropriate mentoring largely due to a lack of mentor training.  The mentoring core at Marshall has developed a program that will help develop and enhance junior faculty mentoring skills.  The program uses a multifaceted approach that develops the skill sets appropriate for mentoring undergraduate, medical student, graduate, and post-graduate researchers.

The first phase of the program is observational.  Junior faculty sit in on graduate student meetings with an assigned senior faculty to observe how an experienced mentor handles students in the primary settings for mentoring. During this phase of the plan junior faculty are required to take mentoring courses on

The second phase is short- term mentoring experience where the junior faculty mentor undergraduate students as part of the WV-INBRE and SRIMS summer research internship at MUSOM.

The third phase of the program is a competitive placement of graduate students into the junior faculty’s laboratory with guidance supplied by a senior researcher. This phase includes the development of a training, mentoring, and education plan based on the NIH F31 Ruth L. Kirschstein Predoctoral Individual National Research Service Award. The training plan will describe the student’s role in the research, including student learning objective timelines and outcome measures (publications, abstracts, grant applications, etc.).

The MWDP also offers seminars that focus on mentoring skills (mentoring contracts, difficult situations, etc.) and laboratory management.

Pipeline Programs:

The MWDP will recruit students to ACCORD labs via several mechanisms including WV-INBRE and SRIMS research internships. Graduate students will be recruited during BMS 785 ‘Introduction to Research’.  For students within the ACCORD program, there is training and seminars for students, as well as a required class: CTS 660 Molecular Phenotype of Appalachian Disorders. The training includes a mandatory rotation through the COBRE Cores to expose the students to the capabilities of each of the Core groups. The student seminars will focus on fellowship and grant writing, time management, communications, and the variety of careers open to PhD graduates, and other important aspects of graduate education. In this seminar series, students are also introduced to issues that are common within Appalachia that impact the health care of this unique population from a biological, environmental, and cultural perspective. This cultural and research orientation will be aimed primarily at exposing students to the large diversity of potential basic science and translational research areas available that could impact healthcare in Appalachia.


Richard Egleton, PhD

Co-Director, MU JCESOM Graduate Program
Phone: (304) 696-3523