Wake Forest Provides a Unique Environment for the Health Disparities in Neuroscience-related Disorders Master’s Program
In the past, basic, clinical, and community-based researchers operated in separate domains, often creating barriers to the translation of scientific findings into widespread improvements in human health. The WFSM Division of Public Health Sciences developed a Master of Science degree in Clinical and Population Translational Science (CPTS) to begin to address this translational gap. At the same time, the Neuroscience Program committed to providing training in translational research with the development of the clinical neuroscience course that engaged basic scientists and clinicians to address neurological disorders and the basic research to understand underlying mechanisms to begin to identify potential therapeutic interventions to improve outcome. Couple these initiatives with the Maya Angelou Center for Health Equity and the result is our program to address health disparities in neurological disorders.
The Neuroscience Program (www.neuroscience.graduate.wfu.edu) at Wake Forest was established in 1990. In 2014 GraduatePrograms.com ranked our program in the top 10 of Neuroscience Programs in the nation. We are proud to include 70 faculty members from 16 different departments in the program. With them, 40 current graduate students and 12 postdoctoral fellows study how the brain and the nervous system work, how they develop, and how they can be affected by the environment and by disease. Our program offers training opportunities in state-of-the-art research that span virtually all areas of modern neuroscience, including molecular, developmental and behavioral neurobiology, as well as cognitive and computational neuroscience. These resources, along with our open and collaborative environment, translate into a wide range of personal and professional opportunities for young neuroscientists.
The Maya Angelou Center for Health Equity (MACHE; www.wakehealth.edu/mache) envisions the achievement of health equity by moving scientific discovery to action. The MACHE is comprised of faculty from the greater Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center with an existing infrastructure of resources focused on minority health-related issues such as infant mortality, cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, HIV, and child and adult immunization. The Center has more than 60 affiliate faculty members from a variety of disciplines. The Faculty and Student Development Program of the MACHE aims to foster career development of minority faculty and students at Wake Forest School of Medicine. Activities are supported by an administrative core and research staff.
The Master of Science degree in Clinical and Population Translational Science (CPTS; www.phs.wakehealth.edu/public/edu.cfm) was initiated in the fall of 2008. Faculty members provide expertise and conduct research across the spectrum of basic, clinical, population, and translational research. The clinical and population translational scientists of tomorrow must be prepared to conduct the research needed to advance methods for putting results we know into practice; to help determine gaps in coverage or in emphasis; to help assess ethical aspects of this research; to contribute to the determination of the long term cost-effectiveness of specific lines of research; to help develop public policy regarding areas of research development and implementation; and to help members of all health professions to become aware of and to utilize the most important research conclusions as they appear.