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About Us

The Jackson Heart Study (JHS) Graduate Training and Education Center at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC-GTEC) is a two-year doctoral-level certificate program that provides research training in cardiovascular epidemiology from a population health perspective. This program is called the Robert Smith, MD, Scholars Program, honoring a hero in Mississippi health and health care.

The overall goals of UMMC-GTEC are to:Students sitting in a lounge with laptop computers.

  • Strengthen the research skills of doctoral students in biomedical health and behavioral sciences to better prepare them for their professional careers.

  • Advance the science of research training and education of doctoral students. 

This project has been funded in whole or in part with Federal funds from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, and Department of Health and Human Services, under Contract No. HHSN268201800012I.

The Robert Smith, MD Graduate Scholars Program at UMMC is a research training and mentoring program. Academic credit hours are not conferred, tuition is not charged and therefore financial aid for this program does not apply under Title IV.

Our curriculum

Our research training program focuses on the following areas:

  • Cardiovascular epidemiology
  • Biostatistics & applied statistical analysis
  • Health disparities and minority health
  • Responsible conduct of research
  • Scientific writing
  • Scientific presentations

Smith Scholars will receive individual research mentoring, career coaching and guidance from experienced educators and work on teams to collaborate to produce scientific manuscripts and abstracts to be submitted for peer-review in journals and at national conferences. 

Benefits of participation

Smith Scholars will receive:

  • Memberships in national, regional, and state-level scientific organizations
  • Invitations to participate in the design and execution of research studies
  • Research mentoring from leading cardiovascular health scientists
  • Career guidance from faculty
  • Annual stipend of $7,500

A successful career in biomedical science requires curiosity, passion, persistence, and dedication. Our research training and mentoring program will prepare Smith Scholars with intense interactive experiences that allow them to observe and participate in the entire research process. We also believe that UMMC-GTEC will complement and extend their doctoral and health professional programs. Participation in our program will allow Smith Scholars to expand their professional networks and prepare them to pursue future career opportunities in biomedical research, including post-doctoral fellowships, residencies, and early career faculty positions.