Brianna Brim, MOT, OTR/L, CPAM, CLIPP, academic fieldwork coordinator for the Occupational Therapy (OT) program
, just got back from a ten day immersion in a Clinical and Translational Research course for PhD students at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Center. Thanks to the course, she’s now armed with increased knowledge and confidence in how technology can be useful for research, and she can’t wait to use it.
Brim was encouraged to apply to the course by her mentor, Dr. Sinclair Smith, adjunct, College of Education and Rehabilitation; and by Dr. Mitchell Scheiman, director, graduate programs and Biomedicine. She secured a spot as one of only 30 in the country to partake in the course.
Besides showcasing the latest in research technology, the workshop also focused on training future clinical and translational researchers in proper methodology, discussed contemporary research issues, taught better manuscript writing, discussed ethical concerns and how to facilitate better research through the integration of clinical and research staff.
“I met a lot of wonderful PhD hopefuls with backgrounds ranging from chemistry to cancer biology, but I also spent time with one of the OTs at NIH to learn about their specific research and methodology within the clinical realm, which was invaluable,” Brim said.
As the majority of Brim’s work is focused in clinical research as she is enrolled in the University’s PhD Biomed program
she appreciated the emphasized collaboration between both clinical and bench scientists and how the collaboration can lead to better outcomes for patients. She was introduced to many resources through the NIH and outside sources she believes will help strengthen her current and future research agenda.
Since returning, Brim has reflected on new ways she can educate Salus OT students with the use of 3D print technology and virtual reality – two topics covered extensively in the course. The entire experience exceeded her expectations and she highly recommends it to other PhD students in the biomedicine program. “It was a wonderful opportunity to represent both occupational therapy and Salus. I learned a lot from my time at NIH and really felt energized in my research interests,” she said.