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Prospective Students

A Message from the Director

Dr. O'Banion

Welcome, and thank you for considering Rochester for your physician-scientist training!

The Medical Scientist Training (MD/PhD) Program provides training for some of the most demanding and rewarding careers available today. Typical careers combine the excitement of discovery with the satisfaction of helping people. Success in such careers requires many talents and considerable commitment. Thus, your choice of university for preparation is a major decision.

At Rochester, we develop talent through interactive research, teaching, patient care, and individual mentoring. The University is a medium sized, private research university with an endowment of more than $1.5 billion dollars. There are roughly 5,600 undergraduate, 4,200 graduate, and 400 medical students. Research and training occurs under the single roof of the Medical Center and immediately adjacent departments of the Schools of Arts, Sciences, and Hajim Engineering. Clinical aspects of medicine are intertwined with coursework and research from the beginning to the end in Rochester's MD/PhD Curriculum. Many research projects are collaborations between scientists and physicians in different departments, thus facilitating the interdisciplinary approach necessary to solve complex problems in medicine. Rochester's size and physical layout allows an interactive, cooperative, informal, and supportive atmosphere that optimizes both intellectual and personal growth.

Program students take advantage of outstanding opportunities in a wide range of areas, reflecting an appreciation that research aimed at understanding human health and disease takes many forms. Rochester is committed to providing the very best environment for research. For example, well over $500 million dollars has been invested in the past 10 years to construct and populate new research buildings including a new Biomedical Engineering building, new state-of-the-art research floors in the Wilmot Cancer Center, and the newly established Saunders Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute, effectively increasing research opportunities by more than 50%. New training programs in Epidemiology and Cardiovascular Medicine have been established. The National Institutes of Health has consistently recognized Rochester as an outstanding place for MD/PhD training, with the 2015-2016 academic year marking our 57th year training physician-scientists and 40th consecutive year of MSTP funding.

I personally invite you to consider our institute for your combined degree training in order to develop the skills and expertise needed to become a physician-scientist. The thrill of discovery and the satisfaction of bringing science and medicine together provide rewards that are matched by few endeavors and here at Rochester, our program and environment are designed to maximize this synergism.

M. Kerry O'Banion, M.D., Ph.D.
Director, Medical Scientist Training Program

A Safe, Welcoming and Supportive Environment for Graduate Study 

We encourage students to investigate the academic and social climate in which they will be working, and recognize that recent allegations raised in the press and elsewhere may raise concerns about choosing the University of Rochester for your graduate studies. The University is deeply committed to providing a safe, inclusive and supportive learning environment for graduate students. We are taking steps to further strengthen that commitment.

  • The CARE network—our nationally recognized program for confidentially receiving help with almost any academic, emotional, physical or social concern—now serves all graduate and post-baccalaureate students as well as University undergraduates.
  • Our Ombudsperson Program for graduate students and postdoctoral appointees adds a layer of confidential and independent support for discussing any concern and also for reporting inappropriate behavior.
  • The Office for Inclusion and Culture Development promotes diversity and is tasked with ensuring that policies and practices to support learners are clear, consistent, and communicated effectively across all medical center education programs.

Our goal is to provide a first-class research and training environment in which faculty, learners and staff are united by mutual respect and the love of science. Find more University resources and information on this website or talk to your program coordinator if you have questions.