The mission of the Harvard Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine Fellowship Training Program is to train future leaders in academic neonatology. Fellows are recruited based on their strong commitment to scholarly activity, and the Program prioritizes mentoring toward academic and scientific leadership.
Early in the first fellowship year, each trainee meets with an assigned Scholarship Oversight Committee (SOC) consisting of faculty members with interests and expertise in either clinical, epidemiological and health services research, or basic science and translational research, according to the fellow’s own scholarly objectives. The Committee assists each fellow in focusing his or her interests and suggests potential research mentors. Mentors are suggested and selected based on the degree to which their interests correspond with our trainees’, and on their seniority, commitment to mentoring, and scientific excellence. Mentors are drawn from within Boston Children’s Hospital and from the broader Harvard and Boston scholarly community. Fellows spend the remainder of their first year nonclinical time selecting a research supervisor in collaboration with the Fellowship Director and the Division Chief.
Once fellows have identified a research mentor, they work with their new supervisor to nominate a customized SOC, which meets with them twice annually for the remainder of their training. Prior to each meeting, the fellow considers progress to date on their scholarly project and submits a written summary of their work. During the meeting, the trainee identifies supervision, support, and education that will be necessary to complete the project. Together with the Committee, the trainee also specifies objectives for the next research period, and these are reviewed at the next meeting, along with reasons for any goals that were not met and ideas for overcoming those obstacles. Career planning is also specifically addressed as an extension of the scholarly process.
Progress in scholarly activity and clinical proficiency area is reviewed semi-annually at a Career Planning Conference with the Program Director, and with faculty advisors who are assigned in first year.