About Us

Program Overview

Growing out of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Clinical Scholars program, an independent consortium of community, health system, policy and academic partners have come together to offer this important two-year, site-based training program. The new NCSP, which includes former RWJF Clinical Scholars program sites, retains the experience and central values of that highly successful program, including a commitment to teaching rigorous research design, ensuring Scholars develop a nuanced understanding of how the health system and social determinants affect health, engagement of those who can help apply research results, and emphasizing the outcomes and impact of research. The program is both interprofessional and multidisciplinary, fostering team-based collaborations among physicians and nurses to address our most pressing health problems. Scholars who have completed their medical degree and residency training, PhD in Nursing, or Doctor of Nursing Practice, will share this important experience, enhance each other's career trajectories, and build a network of health professionals to lead change in the nation.

Building upon these core strengths, the NCSP has also moved in a new direction by partnering directly with institutions and agencies sponsoring individual slots, with a strong focus on commitment to partnering agencies and creating generalizable lessons for improving health of patients and communities. At each site, consortium partners contribute their invaluable expertise and/or resources to support the Scholars and their research, as well as the curricular and administrative core of the program. At the heart of the program, many members of our consortium fund and work directly with each Scholar to identify and develop projects to cultivate that Scholar's unique research and leadership skills. We do so in a fundamentally innovative environment where partners play a major role in the selection of Scholars, training, intensive mentorship, funding positions, and program governance.

At the Penn NCSP program, scholars participate in a robust, interprofessional core curriculum, earning a Master of Science in Health Policy Research and receiving supplemental training in leadership, career development, and research practices.  Scholars acquire and hone a diverse set of skills in qualitative and quantitative clinical research methods, organizational and social change, community engagement, program development and evaluation, team management, communication, implementation science, innovation, and policy analysis.

NCSP-VA Partnership

The Department of Veterans Affairs is a strong community partner for the NCSP and supports a number of VA NCSP fellows each year. The VA NCSP fellows have a commitment to conducting research addressing health and policy issues relevant to veterans and reflecting priority areas in the Department of Veterans Affairs. VA NCSP fellows participate in activities at their designated VA Medical Center, as well as participate fully in the overall NCSP program at the affiliated institution. Learn More

VA Advanced Fellowships Program for NCSP Clinician Scholars

The fellowship provides two years of post-residency research, education, and clinical learning opportunities to eligible physicians and nurses. Participants are expected to complete a graduate level research project using a broad array of disciplines. These may include epidemiology, biostatistics, medical information sciences, economics, the social sciences, anthropology, history of medicine, law, and ethics. The program emphasizes the importance of community health, consistent with VA's goals to optimize the health of the veteran, the VA community, and to contribute to the health of the Nation. VA NCSP Clinician Scholars participate in activities at their designated VA Medical Center as well as participate fully in the overall NCSP program at the affiliated institution. Experienced mentors of national stature provide guidance to fellows in rich learning environments.

VA Advanced Fellowships Office

  • Stuart Gilman, MD, MPH, Director, Advanced Fellowships and Professional DevelopmentNCSP National Program Board (NPB) Member and VA Liaison

  • Jeff Cully, PhD, Assistant Director, Advanced Fellowships and Professional Development

  • Deborah Ludke, MHA, Administrative Officer, Advanced Fellowships and Professional Development

  • Kimberly Uhl, MBA, Management Analyst, Advanced Fellowships and Professional Development

University Faculty VA Liaisons

The National Clinician Scholars Program has a VA faculty representative at each of the four participating universities where Scholars are trained.

Penn NCSP VA Liaison: Marilyn Schapira, MD, MPH, Associate Director, Penn NCSP; Professor of Medicine at the Veteran's Administration Medical Center; Co-Leader, Cancer Control Research Program, Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania

National Program Board (NPB)

Oversight will be provided by a National Program Board (NPB) that consists of the deans from each site’s schools of nursing and medicine, VA representation, community representatives, prominent health care leaders, and other parties whose participation will help advance program goals.  The NPB will manage and control the business and affairs of the NCSP, including overseeing the application process and approval of new NCSP sites, supervising the quality of existing NCSP sites and determining common program elements.