Training and Career Development

The Weill Cornell Institute of Geriatric Psychiatry offers both Clinical and Research Fellowships, as well as programs for trainees and faculty of Weill Cornell Medical College, the Institute provides career development training at a national level.

Clinical and Research Fellowships

T32 Postdoc Research Fellowship in Geriatric Mood Disorders

The Research Fellowship is one of the first formal research training programs in the US focusing on geriatric mood disorders. Established in 1989, it has been supported by 6 consecutive, competitive T32 NIMH Awards. Throughout its operation, the fellowship has undergone continuous transformation in response to scientific developments, IOM mandates, the 2015 NIMH Strategic Priorities, the RDoc Project, and the evolving expertise of our current faculty. The fellowship organizes its research training in a continuum in which the Institute’s human neurobiology studies provide targets for novel treatment development initiatives and services research seeks to extend the quality and reach of mental health treatment in the community.

The fellowship’s strengths are: 1) The academic record of its trainees; 2) Leadership in research training at a national level (PIs of the NIMH Summer Research Institute); 3) NIMH-funded faculty in translational research ranging from molecular genetics, neuroimaging, clinical pharmacology, intervention development, and mental health services research; 4) Cohesive organization of the Cornell Institute; 5) Four Cornell pilot project programs; 6) Rich study populations and laboratory resources; 7) Databases available for secondary analyses and hypothesis generation by fellows; 8) Long and effective collaboration with investigators of Geriatric Medicine, General Internal Medicine, Clinical Epidemiology and Services Research Program, Public Health and Medical Ethics; and 9) Leadership in 8 multisite studies.

Under the overall direction of G. Alexopoulos, M.D. the fellowship’s components are led by funded investigators in clinical biology (F. Gunning), novel treatment development (G. Alexopoulos), psychosocial interventions for high risk patients (D. Kiosses), and services research (JA Sirey) with a strong record in research training and by an Executive Committee with expertise in molecular genetics, neuroimaging, treatment development, ethics, and minority studies.  We train physicians, psychiatrists and Ph.D. scientists, whose personalized training programs are coordinated by two mentors (e.g. one clinical and one basic investigator) to facilitate translation research.  Beyond a Core Curriculum, we support our trainees in conducting their own studies, in preparing funding applications, and in publishing data-based papers.

Applicants to the T32 Research Fellowship must have an MD or PhD and be either US citizens or hold an immigrant visa (green card). Those interested, may submit a one page career statement and a CV to G. Alexopoulos, M.D. at gsalexop@med.cornell.edu.

ACGME Clinical Fellowship in Geriatric Psychiatry

This one-year, ACGME-accredited clinical fellowship in Geriatric Psychiatry trains two psychiatrists each academic year. The objective of this program is to enable its fellows to develop knowledge, skills and attitudes in the clinical practice of Geriatric Psychiatry, to present and write scholarly papers, and to teach junior trainees.  

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Research Career Development

Summer Research Institute (SRI)

Summer Research Institute (SRI). The SRI is an intensive 4-day program for junior scientists or physicians from around the country aspiring to a research career in geriatric mental health. It consists of lectures, group seminars, workshops, and individual and group consultation and mentoring of post-residency M.D.s or DOs as well as postdoctoral Ph.D., Psy.D. and Pharm.D. fellows. The program is oriented to the identification of the conditions needed to establish a research career to the "nuts and bolts" of research. For more information, about the program or for an application, go to https://mentalhealthtrainingnetwork.org/institutes/sri/home.

NIMH Research Career Institute in Mental Health of Aging (CIMA)

In addition to programs for trainees and faculty of Weill Cornell Medical College, we lead the CIMA, a national program devoted to the development of early career investigators focused on aging and mental health. CIMA is designed to promote the research career of talented junior faculty, post-residency and post-doctoral fellows interested in: 1. Mechanisms and developmental trajectories of behavioral pathology of mid- and late-life. 2. Development of neurobiologically-informed novel treatment and prevention models for aging-related mental health needs; and 3. Delivery of mental health services to the aging community.

CIMA’s aims are to help mentees clarify their research focus, develop and maintain requisite skills and a productivity record, and acquire mentorship and support needed for a career based on competitive funding. Its training vehicles are: 1. An annual, five day research career development immersion program for 16-20 mentees; 2. Pairing trainees with mentors during an one-year program focusing on both research content and planning; and 3. A web-based infrastructure to support ongoing, offsite mentoring, professional networking, and information exchange.

CIMA’s relies on a leadership team with organizational experience gained through long service in two NIMH national research mentorship programs, the Summer Research Institute and the Advanced Research Institute. Its faculty consists of committed mid-career and senior NIH-funded investigators with a successful record in research mentorship informed by the field’s scientific developments and guided by the 2015 NIMH Strategic Priorities.  For more information call Dr. Faith Gunning fgd2002@med.cornell.edu.

NIMH Advanced Research Institute (ARI)

Senior and mid-career investigators of the Weill Cornell Institute of Geriatric Psychiatry serve as mentors at ARI. ARI is a national mentoring program designed to help new investigators achieve their first R01 funding and assume the responsibilities of independent scientists. The program seeks to increase the number of independent investigators conducting translational, interventions and services research in geriatric mental health.  These aims contribute to ARI’s overarching mission to reduce the burden of mental disorders in late life.  ARI is supported by a grant to Dartmouth College from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH; R25 MH068502; PI: Martha L. Bruce). For more information see https://mentalhealthtrainingnetwork.org/institutes/ari/home.

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