UAMS Invites Public to Fall 2017 Community Scientist Academy

Arkansans interested in having a voice in UAMS research programs, or simply learning how research is done, are invited to participate in UAMS’ fall 2017 Community Scientist Academy.

Sponsored by the UAMS Translational Research Institute, the Community Scientist Academy will be on Thursdays beginning Sept. 21 through Oct. 26, from 10 a.m. - noon, on the UAMS campus in Little Rock.

For questions and to register, contact Nicki Spencer at ndspencer@uams.edu, or (501) 526-6629. The training is being offered at no cost to participants.

Participants in the Community Scientist Academy will interact with UAMS researchers and community members, involved in research, in small roundtable discussions and other interactive sessions. They will learn more about how researchers decide what health issues to study, the research process, and the benefits of individual and community organizations’ involvement in research.

Graduates of the Community Scientist Academy will become more knowledgeable volunteers, with additional opportunities to help influence UAMS research decisions on behalf of their communities. Examples of these opportunities include serving on:

· Standing community advisory boards

· One-time community boards created to advise researchers on individual studies

· Panels that decide what grants get funded

For graduates who are leading community organizations, there may also be opportunities to partner with UAMS on community-based research projects. 

“The Academy will create a cadre of knowledgeable community members who can give voice to the public’s interest by serving on research steering committees, mentoring committees, review committees, research projects, and in other leadership capacities,” said Kate Stewart, MD, MPH, who leads the Translational Research Institute’s Community Engagement program. “It’s critically important that people understand what we do because we can’t improve health without their help.”

UAMS researchers conduct clinical studies and community-based studies. Its clinical studies are conducted in UAMS’ hospital and clinics across the state, including at its main campus in Little Rock, Northwest Campus, eight Regional Centers, Arkansas Children’s Research Institute, and at the Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System.