Early Career Research Award

People posing in front of a research poster

Dedicated funding and support to help recruit early-career research faculty who are underrepresented in medicine (URM).

ECRA scholars participate in the appropriate CTSI career development program

*Participate as an affiliate scholar, not funded by NIH

How we support ECRA scholars

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Current ECRA scholars

Current ECRA scholars

Monica Campo Patino, PhD (K-R01 Scholar)

Department of Medicine; Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine
Primary mentor: Marc Jenkins
Additional mentors: David Ingbar, Ana Núñez
Project title: Early interferon response in human tuberculosis

Ida Fonkoue, MD, PhD (K-R01 Scholar)

Department of Rehabilitation Medicine
Primary mentor: John Osborn
Project title: Autonomic and vascular mechanisms of cardiovascular risk in women with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Arif Hamid, PhD (K-R01 Scholar)

Department of Neuroscience
Mentors: Mark Thomas, David Redish, Damien Fair
Project title: Dopamine contributions to flexible behaviors

Sarah Kaja, PhD (KAP Scholar)

Department of Pediatrics
Mentors: Iris W. Borowsky, Marla E. Eisenberg, Alicia Kunin-Batson, Claudia Fox, Daheia Barr-Anderson, Kade Goepferd
Project title:  A Synergistic Solution: Piloting a Physical Activity-Based Positive Youth Development Program to Support Transgender and Gender Diverse (TGD) Adolescents' Mental Health

Jesse Kowalski , PT, DPT, PhD (KAP Scholar)

Department of Rehabilitation Medicine
Mentor: Damien Fair
Project title: Multimodal assessment of early sensorimotor function after perinatal stroke

Nathan Mesfin, MD (KAP Scholar)

Department of Medicine
Mentors: Adams Dudley, Steven Fu

Ebiere Okah, MD, MSCR (KAP Scholar)

Department of Family Medicine and Community Health
Mentors: Michele Allen, Pamela Lutsey, Diana Burgess
Project title: Race, racism, and race-based medical practice

Edgar Peña, PhD (KAP Scholar)

Department of Biomedical Engineering
Mentors:  Hubert Lim, Brenda Ogle, Andrew Alleyne, Sayeed Ikramuddin
Project title: Precision Electroceutical Research Lab

Gianna Rea-Sandin, PhD (KAP Scholar)

Department of Pediatrics
Mentor: Iris Borowsky
Project title: Exploring mechanisms of the intergenerational transmission of substance use during adolescence and adulthood using complementary causally informative study designs 

Sabrina Scroggins, PhD (K-R01 Scholar)

Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Minnesota Duluth
Mentors: Jean Regal, Stephen Contag, Kris Hogquist, Mary Owen
Project title: Testing the efficacy of regulatory dendritic cell treatment in the prevention of preeclampsia

Cliff Whetung, PhD (KAP Scholar)

Department of Family Medicine and Biobehavioral Health
Mentor: Kristen Jacklin

Serena Xiong, PhD, MPH (KAP Scholar)

Department of Family Medicine and Community Health
Mentors: Rebekah Pratt, Rahel Ghebre, Michele Allen

Former ECRA scholars

Former ECRA scholars

David Haynes II, PhD, MS (Pre-K Scholar)

Institute for Health Informatics
Primary mentor: Anne Joseph
Additional mentors: Tim Beebe, Adams Dudley, Constantin Aliferis, Sisi Ma
Project title: Understanding cancer disparities at the local level

Stefani Thomas, PhD (Pre-K Scholar)

Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology
Primary mentor: Reuben Harris
Additional mentors: Rachel Vogel, Weihua Guan
Project title: Proteome-level predictors of improved response to PARP inhibitor therapy in ovarian cancer