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Medical Scientist Training Program

The NIGMS Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) provides Ruth L. Kirschstein Institutional Predoctoral Training Grant (T32) awards to medical institutions for the training of qualified M.D.-Ph.D. dual-degree students who are motivated to undertake biomedical research and research-related careers in academia, industry, and government. MSTP students participate in an integrated program of graduate training in the biomedical sciences and clinical training offered through medical schools. Graduates receive the combined M.D.-Ph.D. degree. A modest number receive combined V.M.D.-Ph.D. degrees. Other types of dual degree training not otherwise supported by NIH are possible. The majority of graduates pursue careers in basic biomedical or clinical research.

The MSTP currently has 47 participating programs and supports approximately 900   trainees. A number of the MSTP supported programs include partnerships with nearby schools of arts and science or engineering, and non-degree granting research institutes.

MSTP participants may choose from a wide range of research training programs in the biological, chemical or physical sciences. Other disciplines in which MSTP participants can pursue graduate study include the computer sciences, social and behavioral sciences, economics, epidemiology, public health, bioengineering, biostatistics and bioethics.  Trainees also engage in translational and clinical research in any of the areas of interest to NIH and its constituent institutes and centers. 

Mechanism of Support

MSTP grants are made to universities and their medical schools, which are responsible for program operation and trainee selection. Selection for admission is highly competitive. The average time to the combined degrees is 8 years. Trainees appointed to an MSTP grant receive a stipend and tuition allowance as detailed in the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Institutional Research Training Grant (Parent T32)  Funding Announcement. Many institutions supplement the basic stipend provided by the MSTP grant.

MSTP trainees must be citizens or noncitizen nationals of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence. Trainees incur no payback obligation.

Individuals who wish to enter the MSTP should contact the program office at the participating institution(s) of their choice directly for curriculum information and admission requirements. Interested institutions should contact the NIGMS program director for information concerning the program.

More Information

For further information about the NIGMS Medical Scientist Training Program, contact:

Dr. Stefan Maas
Program Director
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
45 Center Drive MSC 6200
Bethesda, MD 20892-6200
Tel: 301-594-0943

This page last reviewed on May 04, 2017