The primary purpose of the Research Advisory Committee is to ensure that the fellow is progressing towards their career goals.
At the beginning of the research year, you should choose an advisory committee. The advisory committee consists of three to five individuals including the research mentor, and additional faculty of the fellow’s choice. It would be valuable to include a scientist with expertise in the area of research. The program director or the research director must be included in the committee. Once a committee is confirmed, you should aim to schedule the first meeting by the fall of the first research year and meetings should be scheduled every six months thereafter. During the first meeting, the committee should outline a career development plan which should include:
- attendance of national meetings
- plans for publications
- plans for grant applications
The committee should not only evaluate scientific progress, but ensure that you are meeting career goals that are critical for competitive fellowship applications.
Following the meeting, your mentor should summarize the comments from the meeting and formally write them up in a Surgical Resident Research Report. This report should be sent to all members of the committee for their signature. This report is critical for documenting progress. Reports should be kept by you and the PI.
Expectations of the Research Advisory Committee
- Help fellows determine their goals from the research fellowship and set an individualized timetable for accomplishing those goals.
- Help identify interesting and feasible research questions and identify other resources and potential collaborators that may be useful to the fellow’s projects.
- Meet one to two times each year.
- Foster the fellow’s productivity and provide some resources when necessary.
- Help the fellow with choosing appropriate timing and sources for grant applications.
- Suggest potential avenues for presentation of data (local or national meetings, etc.)
- Facilitate the fellow’s career advancement and help the fellow find a job.
- Provide a written summary of the meeting for the fellow and the program director.