Medical Scientist Training Program

Project: Research project

Project Details


The MD/PhD Program at Northwestern University was established in 1964 and has been supported by an NIH training grant from 1964-1969 and from 1987-present. The mission of the Northwestern MSTP is to train the next generation of competent, committed, and diverse physician-scientists in an inclusive training environment that allows all students to flourish. To accomplish this mission, our training curriculum emphasizes and integrates two parallel pursuits: training students to excel in biomedical research, and instilling the values, knowledge, and art of clinical medicine. Excellence in medicine begins in the preclinical phase of the program with a comprehensive medical education centered on early exposure to patient care, and it is reinforced with required inpatient and outpatient exposure throughout the research phase of the program. During the research phase, MSTP students benefit from Northwestern’s well-funded research enterprise that provides rich opportunities to pursue interdisciplinary translational research in life sciences, biomedical engineering, bioinformatics, and many other areas across our Evanston and Chicago campuses. After the successful defense of their doctoral dissertations, MSTP students complete hospital-based clerkships as part of the clinical phase of their medical school education and receive the MD degree. The MSTP has developed a robust set of program-specific courses and activities to continuously integrate medical and research training throughout the program and help create a sense of community among students. These activities are complimented by a strong mentoring structure that ensures all students received individualized support from program leadership as they move through the phases of training and work to achieve their unique professional goals. The program’s long-standing success in meeting its training objectives is evidenced in a number of areas: our students receive grant funding at excellent success rates, graduate with strong publication records, and secure residency positions that are among the very best in the nation. Our program also holds diversity as a central part of our training mission, and the diversity of our cohorts speaks to the program’s commitment to fostering a training environment that supports all students as they work towards the dual degree. Over the past two decades, the size and quality of the MSTP have grown steadily thanks to strong institutional support, leadership, and substantial growth in biomedical science research at Northwestern University. The program currently supports 121 students, with plans for continued expansion and improvement over the next five years.
Effective start/end date7/1/226/30/27


  • National Institute of General Medical Sciences (3T32GM144295-02S1)


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