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Emerging Physician Scientists

The Emerging Physician Scientists program supports new faculty with exceptional promise to enhance their research skill and develop pilot data to jump start their research careers.

About the Program

The USC School of Medicine Research Center for Transforming Health supports new faculty, with exceptional promise, to enhance their research skills and projects to jump start their research careers.

The Research Center for Transforming Health Emerging Physician Scientist Faculty Fellowship (EPS) program is an exciting opportunity for early career or transitioning physician scientists to gain experience and mentorship in translational research.

The EPS Faculty Fellowship is a 15-month program that will include education, training and pilot project funding, intended to inform a successful extramural grant application and submission. The EPS program aims to facilitate new and innovative, interdisciplinary, translational research with emphasis on diseases and conditions of importance to South Carolina’s future.  


2018-2019 Program Overview

Program Duration: August 2018-November 2019 (15 months)
Award Amount: $20,000/12 months (direct costs for 12 months from award date / 1 year budget)
Number of Awards: up to 4 may be awarded

  • The project PI must be a physician in good standing with Faculty appointment at USC School of Medicine-Columbia
  • Propose a research project that is clinical/ translational in nature, that will lead to results suitable to serve as the foundation or support for a successful research grant application
  • Have the ability to commit to full participation in all requirements of the program

Benefits for Emerging Physician Scientist:

  • Didactic education and training in translational research and grant development
  • Support and mentorship in project development and implementation
  • Funding for pilot project that can be scaled up and/or used to establish a larger project
  • Support and mentorship for successfully securing extramural funding
  • Biostatistics Support 

Request for Applications

The 2018-2019 Request for Applications has closed. The 2019-2020 Request for Applications will open in April 2019.  

2018-2019 Emerging Physician Scientist Faculty Fellows

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Olabisi Badmus, MD, MPH  

 Department of Family and Preventative Medicine


“Examining the differences in women with hormone receptor negative subtype breast cancer and non-hormone receptor negative breast cancer in South Carolina”

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Kurt Barringhaus, MD  

Department of Internal Medicine, Cardiovascular Division


“Novel Biomarkers in Coronary Heart Disease”

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Jeff Holloway, MD  

Department of Pediatrics

“Evaluation of a Comprehensive Clinical Examination for Concussive Injuries and Return-to-Activity Management”


Please contact the RCTH team at for more information



 Frequently Asked Questions

How long is this program?

The EPS program runs for 15 months- from August of the awarded year to November of the following year. However funding is awarded for a 1-year (12 month) project.

What is the maximum awarded amount?

EPS will receive up to $20,000 for a 1-year (12 month) project. 

What are the requirements if I am accepted into the program?

As an EPS Scholar, you will be expected to:

  • Complete a 3-day didactic training

  • Attend monthly EPS meeting/groups

  • Complete proposed project

  • Complete final project report

  • Attend at least 1 IRB meeting as an observer

  • Attend USC SOM Internal Peer Review meetings, at least one per quarter

  • Present an extramural grant proposal utilizing findings from fellowship

On what campus will the monthly EPS discussion group meeting be held?

Monthly EPS meetings will be held at the School of Medicine VA campus at 6311 Garners Ferry Road.

What if I am unable to attend the monthly EPS meet/groups?

Remote access to meetings will be available. For those unable to attend live sessions (in-person or remotely) should contact the RCTH to access recorded sessions.

Is there a specific format for my proposal? If so, where can I find that document?

We recommend investigators follow NIH PHS 398 guidelines and formatting for their proposal.

What type of guidance/support will be provided as I am writing the proposal?

The RCTH will be providing an informational session on April 23rd and will be available by appointment for interested investigators. For session information or to schedule an appointment, please email the center at  

Is there someone who will review my proposal before it is time for submission?

Proposals will not be reviewed prior to the submission deadline. We encourage investigators to reach out to potential mentors for this type of activity.

What information should be included in the Letter of Intent (LOI) and what is the format?

The LOI should include:

  • Name, email, telephone number and department of the prospective physician scientist

  • The Name, email, telephone number and department of any key personnel

  • Mentor’s Name, email, telephone number and department (if one has been identified)

  • Descriptive title of the project

  • Brief overview or abstract of proposed project (max 500 words)

Will Letters of Intent be evaluated based on merit?

No, the letters of intent will help inform the RCTH on the later review process of complete applications.

What information should be included in the letter of support from my department chair?

The LOS should indicate the department chair’s knowledge and support of the time needed to complete fellowship requirements and proposed project. Please refer to the RFA and LOS template for more information.

What budget elements are required?

Please review the budget template for required elements. Budgets should be created for a 1-year (12 month) period. If you have additional questions, please contact us at

What is a Data Use Agreement?

Data Use Agreements (DUAs) are contractual documents that outline terms and conditions used for the transfer of nonpublic data that is subject to restriction on its use.

Why is a Data Use Agreement (DUA) or documentation of permission to an existing dataset needed for submission of this application?

Obtaining DUAs and/or permissions to use or obtain data and datasets can be a lengthy process. Obtaining these permissions and completing projects may not be feasible in the program timeframe.

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