Scholarship Timeline

First Year

During the fall semester of their first year students will work with their GSP faculty mentor and the GSP scholarship coordinator to identify a topic of interest to the student that is of significance to generalist medicine. Students are expected to identify this topic prior to the start of the spring semester.

During the spring semester of their first year, students will continue to work with their faculty mentor and the GSP scholarship coordinator to narrow the scope of their topic and will formulate a research question that is of publishable quality and interest. Students will receive assistance with this process during the bi-weekly student-faculty lunches held  early in the semester. Students will identify, and when appropriate, develop the resources necessary to address their scholarship question. Depending on the nature of the project this process may include a thorough literature review, identification of data sources and development of protocols to collect data, curriculum development, and cultivation of other resources. All students should work with their GSP faculty mentor and the Scholarship Coordinator to develop a timeline and a series of measurable benchmarks to guide project progress during the summer following first year and the succeeding three years.

Students will have the opportunity to work with representatives from the University of Virginia Institutional Review Board (IRB) during a student-faculty lunch early in the spring semester. During this meeting, students will be introduced to the IRB protocol review process and will determine if their project requires IRB approval. When appropriate, students are expected to receive IRB approval of their study protocol prior to the end of the spring semester of the first year of medical school. Students should be ready to begin work on their study at the start of the summer following first year.

All GSP students register for the Medical Student Summer Research Program (MSSRP)  during the first year. The MSSRP provides the administrative structure required to allow students to work on their scholarship projects during the summer after the first year. Unlike other students participating in the MSSRP, approval and support of all GSP scholarship projects is coordinated by the GSP faculty, not the MSSRP faculty and staff

Summer Following First Year

During the summer following the first year of medical school, students receive a stipend from the GSP to support their primary care scholarship project.  GSP students join other medical school classmates participating in the Medical Student Summer Research Program ( MSSRP).  While being part of the MSSRP, GSP students conduct their scholarly activities specifically directed towards the generation of a primary care-related scholarship project. All scholarship projects are approved by GSP faculty and not the Director of the MSSRP program. GSP students are required to complete all MSSRP program requirements and are encouraged to attend other activities scheduled throughout the summer. It is expected that the majority of the scholarship project will be completed by the conclusion of the MSSRP summer research program.

Most notably, GSP students are required to submit a brief interim project report to the MSSRP and participate in the fall MSSRP Research Symposium. Students should consult the MSSRP program timeline for important dates  related to these activities. Participation in the fall MSSRP Research Symposium includes preparation of a scholarship project poster. The prepared poster should, at a minimum, include the following sections: Background, Hypotheses, Methods, Findings and Discussion. The content of these sections will vary based on the individual project. A draft of the poster should be submitted to the GSP scholarship coordinator no less than two weeks prior to the fall symposium to allow time for revisions and professional poster printing services.

Second and Third Years

During the second and third years of medical school, students should continue work on their scholarship project. During this time, interested students will have the opportunity to work with GSP faculty to prepare their scholarship work for presentation at local, national and international professional meetings. Additionally, students may prepare their work for submission to a peer-reviewed scholarly journal or other forums for publication.

Fourth Year

The GSP scholarship experience culminates in the writing of a formal scholarship paper (due March 1st) and an accompanying informative and engaging oral presentation in early May which they share with their GSP classmates, the GSP faculty, the wider School of Medicine, University community, family and friends.

All students must meet with the GSP scholarship coordinator during their final year to review their scholarship project and prepare for their formal presentation. Students may choose to use elective time to work further on their scholarship project. Students participate in a workshop designed to help them develop presentation skills. In addition, a rehearsal session is required to allow students to hone their oral presentations prior to the final Scholarship Presentation forum.