Skip to main content

Program Design

Program Aims

The PSTP aims to provide:

  • Intensive mentorship — including a special PSTP faculty advisor throughout the training period, who will provide individual academic and career counseling and assist the trainee in selecting scientific mentors. Peer mentorship is encouraged among fellows, residents, and MD/PhD students.
  • Membership in a strong community of physician-scientists — which promotes scientific development through exposure to PhD, MD/PhD, and MD scientists throughout UC San Diego and the surrounding Scientific Institutes. Community building occurs through social events, specialized lectures, and quarterly meetings.
  • Combination of vigorous clinical and scientific training — with early admission to a subspecialty fellowship program and exposure to research opportunities.
  • Early involvement in research - the Research-in-Residency model of the program gives protected research time within a three year internal medicine residency program which allows trainees to start their research program earlier into their postgraduate training.
  • Protected research time - All PSTP trainees are provided protected research time during their fellowship and in their post-fellowship faculty years to develop an independent research program. The trainee's division will provide salary support for this transition, and the program provides additional research funding to help trainees establish an independent research project. 
  • Specific curriculum - All PSTP trainees have a specific two-week curriculum in which they develop skills necessary to lead a successful independent research program (e.g., grant writing, negotiations, mentorship, creating a scientific brand, bioinformatics) and filled with guest speakers including journal editors, former division chiefs and department chairs, and industry partners. 

Program Design

The first three clinical years of training are identical to those in the Categorical Track of the Internal Medicine Residency Programbut with protected research time to allow trainees to pursue translational projects that can be completed prior to fellowship.

Participating subspecialties have agreed to provide preferential acceptance of qualified PSTP trainees who are committed to a career in academic medicine and who complete their clinical training successfully. Early admission into a subspecialty fellowship program allows the trainee to connect with the fellowship of their choice and provides for smooth entry into state-of-the-art research.

Since trainees can perform their postdoctoral research with individuals outside of their division (even the department), we encourage trainees to select their subspecialities based on their clinical interests, rather than research interests.