FIRST in CER seeks to recruit and train junior scientists who can improve public health and reduce health disparities throughout the nation. Recognizing the urgent and compelling need to promote diversity, the PRIDE award will provide rigorous training and mentoring opportunities to junior faculty members from diverse backgrounds, and equip them with the essential skills needed to conduct comparative effectiveness research and address some of the most complex health problems facing us today. The key elements of this program include:

  • Introduction to landmark research topics in heart, lung, blood, and sleep research 
  • Rigorous training in CER methods and responsible conduct of research
  • An ongoing, structured mentorship experience
  • Opportunities for interactions with existing programs at Columbia for mutual support

Components of this program include: didactic training through the Columbia Summer Research Institute (CSRI), mentoring and professional development, grant writing support, and CER seminars. These activities, in addition to many others, will be provided in 3 time periods spanning 14 months, beginning with CSRI.

2011-12 PRIDE Participants


We are currently seeking applications from individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds; or those with race/ethnic backgrounds that are under-represented in biomedical research; or individuals with disabilities that substantially limit one or more major life activities. Furthermore, applicants must be junior faculty members holding health-related doctoral degrees such as the PhD, MD, DO, DrPH, DDS, DMD, DVM, or equivalent, as well as doctorally-prepared nurses. Individuals ineligible for PRIDE include current and former principal investigators on NIH research grants (R01), subprojects or program project (P01) or center grants (P50).

NOTE: One of the criteria for the Columbia University PRIDE program is residency in the NYC metro area (or the ability to provide your own living arrangements) so that you can commute daily to the program, located near Broadway and W. 168th Street in the Washington Heights district of Manhattan. The FIRST in CER PRIDE program does not cover meals or lodging.

Complete the pre-application.


Summer 1:  Columbia Summer Research Institute (CSRI)
A five-week intensive training program, CSRI participants will learn and apply the theory and methods behind the design and conduct of clinical research studies, covering core knowledge in epidemiology and biostatistics, as well as more specialized study of research design and grant writing, health disparities research, decision analysis and cost effectiveness analysis. 
View details of the five-week program and learn more about CSRI.

Fall/Spring:  Ongoing Support
PRIDE is more than didactic training.  Throughout the year, scholars will participate in monthly seminars related to CER and Heart, Lung, Blood and Sleep (HLBS) research, attend a mid-year local conference and receive ongoing mentoring support.  Scholars will also attend mentoring workshops and a national PRIDE conference. 

Summer 2:  Grant Writing
One of our major aims is to assist scholars in becoming independent researchers.  For two weeks, scholars will focus almost exclusively on grant writing.  By the end of the summer session, PRIDE scholars will have completed drafts of research proposals with the support of mentors and summer institute teaching faculty.

Since we are recruiting three cohorts for the PRIDE program, we want each of the cohorts to be able to meet each other and share their experiences.  We also want these cohorts to build a larger CER community on-campus and support others in CER.  At the end of the fourth summer, we will host a reunion for all three cohorts.


In order to evaluate the success of our scholars and our program, we plan to maintain long-term contact with our scholars to track their progress and career trajectories over time.


To meet our overarching goal of creating a diverse set of CER experts, one of our aims is to provide trainees with a structured mentorship experience, extending from the first into the second year of the program.  Mentoring will allow our trainees to enhance their academic and professional skills.

See the full list of mentors.

National PRIDE site:

Program Directors:  Melissa D. Begg, ScD; Karina Davidson, PhD; Anne Taylor, MD

Contact Information:
Sophia Li
TRANSFORM Administrative Manager

Mailing Address:
Columbia University Medical Center
622 W 168th St, PH10-305
New York, NY 10032

phone:  212.305.0760
fax:  212.305.3213