Interdisciplinary Engineering Career Development Center in Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences

Project: Research project

Project Details


The goal of this competitive renewal proposal is to continue the highly successful Interdisciplinary Engineering Career Development Center in Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences created by a consortium of leading institutions in the field, including Northwestern University, the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, University of California Irvine, Medical University of South Carolina/Clemson University, University of North Carolina/North Carolina State University, Case Western Reserve University, Marquette University, Stanford University, and University of Delaware. The mission of our program is to develop top scholars with engineering and other quantitative backgrounds to become successful rehabilitation scientists in translational research. This is the only program of its kind to focus on engineering-trained investigators. We believe that these individuals, who already possess strong quantitative, problem-solving, programming, signal analysis and mechatronics skills, are uniquely positioned to make a significant impact on the field of quantitative movement and rehabilitation sciences (MRS) and its translation to rehabilitative care. The proposed career development program will provide scholars with: 1) In-depth understanding of rehabilitation patient-centered clinical problems; 2) Career development opportunities and mentoring to broaden their MRS research and training; 3) Mentoring in translational research; 4) Technology transfer and translation training to increase the impact of their work. We will accomplish these goals by using a dual-mentorship model with both a senior engineering faculty member and a senior clinical rehabilitation faculty member assigned to each scholar. Moreover, new this cycle, scholars will participate in a clinical bootcamp followed by a mentored clinical experience that will allow them to integrate their newly gained knowledge of pathophysiology to clinical manifestations of movement disorders. Also, scholars will benefit from increase exposure and networking through organized conference sessions. Finally, they will be participating in grant review groups made up with fellow scholars and a member of the executive committee. These experiences are designed to help our scholar’s identify significant clinical needs related to their domains of expertise as well as to become successful rehabilitation scientists. The participating institutions have a long and recognized history of rehabilitation research including studies on the neurobiology of movement behavior and dysfunction, rehabilitation robotics, neural machine interfaces for the restoration of sensorimotor function, and musculoskeletal modeling. Extensive research is being performed in these areas, across the continuum from fundamental animal and human studies to the development of novel rehabilitation paradigms. This impressive array of established research programs provides a fertile ground for developing our engineering scholars and fostering new interdisciplinary and inter-institutional collaborations to advance our field. We intend to support a total of four scholars in year one of the career development program, and six scholars in subsequent years. The program will provide support for two years for each scholar.
Effective start/end date9/1/178/31/23


  • National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (5K12HD073945-09)


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