Year 1

The Bridges to Stem Cell Research Internship Program (BSCRIP) has continued to build upon the past success of our Internship Program by including new coursework for interns, establishing patient engagement and community outreach, and requiring regulatory affairs training. Our expanded Program has accelerated the training and expansion of the pool of personnel
with the expertise necessary to undertake careers in regenerative medicine. Last year, ten highly competitive trainees were recruited from the university’s diverse student
populations, including individuals from diverse and under-represented backgrounds that might not otherwise have hadthe chance to attain the essential expertise to contribute to the ultimate goal of delivering stem-cell
based therapies to patients. A newly optimized curriculum for Trainees at the home institution included a regulatory affairs course providing information about
healthcare product regulation and development, colloquia and community outreach activities designed to provide students with educational and patient engagement
opportunities, and participation in a biomedical ethics course. Trainees completed a comprehensive, externally-provided laboratory training course which includes
hands-on maintenance and characterization of human embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells within a state-of-the-art Training Center designed by noted experts
in the field. Trainees completed a 12-month internship experience at one of four partnering stem cell research facilities located nearby, or at local biotechnology
companies specializing in human stem cell research and development. During the internship period, Trainees attended research seminars, met and presented their
scientific progress at monthly colloquia with other trainees and participating host mentors and scientists, and present scientific posters encompassing their data at local
and regional scientific meetings – including ISSCR. The culmination of the training program was completed following submission of a written thesis and oral thesis defense for graduate-level trainees, a final Poster
Presentation Symposium, and participation at the highly successful Annual CIRM Bridges Meeting located this year at Coronado, California. The training program enabled students of diverse background to contribute their
knowledge and technical skills developed upon completion of the training period to the great promise of stem cell-based treatment therapies for patients.