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Postdoctoral Training Program in Vascular Biology

The Vascular Medicine Institute at the University of Pittsburgh is a rich environment for postdoctoral training. The institute consists of over 20 laboratories run by independent investigators with experience and enthusiasm for training postdoctoral fellows. Currently, over 20 postdocs are being trained by core VMI faculty. Beyond individualized mentorship by top-notch basic and translational researchers, the institute offers mentorship in career development grant writing, presentation skills and provides opportunities for collaboration and networking with researcher within and outside the University.

The following programs are dedicated to supporting postdoctoral training within VMI:

Biweekly Journal Club – This journal club takes place every other week and all postdocs are required  to attend and to present at least once a year.  The goal of this meeting to review current publications and to gain the skill of critically reviewing the literature.

VMI Research in Progress – All postdocs are required to attend this weekly meeting and present their work at least once a year starting in their 2nd year. This seminar is a more informal venue in which junior investigators present their current research in order to gain scientific feedback as well as develop their oral presentation skills.

Academic Survival Skill Course – All postdocs are highly encouraged to attend this evening course.  The goal of this series is to teach and familiarize postdocs with the non-scientific skills required to pursue and succeed in an academic career.

Grant Writing Workshop – This workshop teaches the fundamentals of writing a grant application and guides trainees as they put together their first grant.  This workshop is limited to postdocs in their second year (or above) of training who have demonstrated significant scientific aptitude and have long term plans to stay in academia. 

Milestone Meetings with the Program Director – In order to ensure an individualized training plan and facilitate career development, the postdoctoral fellow will meet (along with his/her primary mentor) with the VMI Director of Academic Affairs upon entry into the program and then once each year thereafter.  The goal of these meetings is to assess and assist in the progression of both scientific and career development.

VMI postdoctoral organization – This is an informal network consisting of all postdocs within the VMI that provides support for one another. The organization also serves functions such as organizing informal social/networking events and choosing one speaker for the VMI Distinguished Lecture series. The organization has a chosen representative to voice concerns/ideas of the postdocs to the VMI Director and other faculty. The representative will be invited to speak at VMI faculty meetings as required.

VMI Postdoctoral Scholar Award – Postdocs will have the opportunity to apply for the VMI Postdoctoral Scholar Award.  This award is a 12-month pilot grant of $15k per year in direct costs to provide support for up to 3 HVI/VMI postdoctoral researchers to develop preliminary data for competitive extramural proposals (F or K equivalent). Funds can be used to support research supplies and/or salary. Please note that this award mechanism cannot be used to provide additional funding for the faculty mentor’s projectsREAD MORE

Program Leadership

Program Director: Sruti Shiva, PhD

Co-Director: Iain Scott, PhD

Core Training Faculty: Mark Gladwin, Stephen Chan, Partha Dutta, Delphine Gomez, Brett Kaufman, Enrico Novelli, Solomon Ofori-Acquah, Patrick Pagano, Iain Scott, Sruti Shiva, Cindy St. Hilaire, Adam Straub, Prithu Sundd, Imad Al-Gouleh


For more information, contact Sruti Shiva, PhD.