Scholarly Concentrations Program (SCP)

Summer Scholarly Award Experience

The Summer Scholarly Award Experience consists of a funded scholarly opportunity during the break between the MSI and MSII year.  Information is announced prior to the MSI winter break.

It is expected that the submitted scholarly project be the student’s top priority during the summer, requiring a 100% effort and full-time commitment from the student. The student must be in good academic standing and progressing to the MSII year to receive this award. The allocation of this award (considered taxable income, less appropriate taxes and required deductions) is based on a competitive application process emphasizing individual student scholarship, project feasibility and potential for longitudinal development and impact.

At the end of the summer scholarly experience, the faculty mentor is expected to assist the student in preparing and/or finalizing an abstract based on the summer scholarly project.

  • Academic Standing

    Any changes to the student’s status (including illness/injury, academic issues, and professionalism issues) after the awarding of a summer scholarly award will be re-assessed and acted upon. Students are required to inform the RISE Directors and Project Mentors if they cannot fulfill the obligations of their scholarly projects due to academic remediation issues. Summer awards are subject to review with possible pro-rating of the summer award amount or withdrawal of the award based on the student’s status.

  • Evaluative Criteria

    Scholarly project proposals are to be submitted electronically and are reviewed by the SCP Project Review Committee. Projects submitted will be assessed based on the following evaluative criteria:

    1. Professionalism and clarity of the application.
    2. Formulation of a clear scholarly question.
    3. Significance of this scholarly question to the field.
    4. Description and understanding of the methodologies involved.
    5. Feasibility of the scholarly project.
    6. Expectation that the results of the scholarly project will result in an abstract/publication.
    7. Benefit of the project to the student’s scholarly growth.

    The student will be required to obtain a letter of support from their USF Health project mentor as part of their submission. If the proposal is accepted, the SCP student will be offered an award (considered taxable income, less appropriate taxes and required deductions), to start in May. This award will be considered a contractual agreement between the USF funding source and the student.

    Students are strongly encouraged to do scholarly projects, usually starting between Years 1 and 2. The scope of these projects reflects the commitment by both faculty and students and has included basic science research, clinical studies, education and service. It may be original research, a paper, a presentation, or a service and should demonstrate the student’s growth through analytic, leadership, or creative processes.

  • SCP Summer Scholarly Award Application

    The student must present a well-defined scholarly project proposal in order to be considered for funding. Some student project proposals may be of an original design while others may stem from grants initiated by their mentors. Whereas most projects are of an individual effort, some may be group projects. Separate proposals must be submitted by each member of a group project. In all cases, either individual or group, the student must clarify their specific role in the project. The link to the application platform will be shared with students via USF Health email in January.


    • Biographical Information for the Student and the Project Mentor(s)
    • Project details including IRB or IACUC approval if appropriate
    • Travel details as applicable including forms needed for travel outside of the United States
    • Permissions as applicable related to working at sites outside MCOM
    • Information concerning accessing patient information at sites both within and outside MCOM
    • How project relates to the concentration focus
    • Completion of Conflict of Interest Policy

    The student is to write a narrative for their project that includes the following:

    • Project title
    • Abstract/Synopsis
    • Hypothesis, primary and secondary objectives or specific aims of the proposed project
    • Significance and background of the proposed project including literature support (can utilize the PI’s basic project design but it must be acknowledged and articulated by the student)
    • What methods will be used to accomplish this project?
    • What milestones will be achieved this summer?
    • How will these specific milestones contribute to the completion of the overall project?
    • Include the time-line for the whole project. Include travel dates if applicable as well as how long the student will be at the international location.
    • What part (if any) of the project will continue beyond the summer?
    • List of references

    One letter of support** from the Project Mentor is required. Letters of support should highlight the following:

    • A brief overview of the proposed project and the student's role in the project
    • What the student will learn during the project
    • The mentor’s role on the project, including information regarding their interaction with the student, the extent to which the mentor and the student have collaborated on a summer plan, the frequency of meetings planned for the summer, etc.
    • The scientific and educational value of the project
    • **If the summer project includes travel to a different institution outside of USF or to a foreign country, the student must submit two letters of support. One of the letters must be from the contact at that site, the other must be from a USF faculty member who is involved enough with the project to attest to its feasibility and to monitor the progress from off-site.

    Scholarly projects involving human subject research conducted outside of USF require IRB approval from both institutions. This may result in approval delays particularly for research conducted outside the US that involve ethical review boards as these may work differently from the US IRB process. Some international Universities require documents such as agreement letters that specify the visiting student’s terms and conditions which must be reviewed by USF legal.

    When performing or presenting research outside of the US, medical students must comply with the rules and regulations as documented on the Medicine International website. Be sure to allow enough time and make sure you are aware of all required documentation prior to embarking.

    Expectations for this summer program for both the students and mentors will be conveyed via email along with an assessment component for the mentor. It is assumed that the students will be working longer than the funded time on the project.

  • Student Responsibilities for

    Summer Scholarly Award Experience

    Students are to:

    • Work 40 hours/week documenting their hours. It is expected that the submitted scholarly project be the student’s top priority during the summer, requiring 100% effort and a full-time commitment from the student.
    • Complete 4 bi-weekly reports describing their progress to-date, hours worked, successes and meetings with mentors and any other issues via web link (link changes each version).
    • Attend workshops and lectures considered added value to the Summer Scholarly Experience
    • Complete an End of Summer Project Recap and Abstract due end of summer
    • Inform the Office of Research, Innovation & Scholarly Endeavors (RISE) coordinator if absent (ill) for extended period of time (greater than 2 days) and any scheduled vacations/other trips.
    • Be in good academic standing and progressing to the MSII year.
    • Inform the SCP Director, the SC leader and project mentor about any circumstances that may prevent fulfillment of their contractual agreement for this period.
    • Be professional at all times showing respect to mentors, staff, colleagues and patients.
    • Follow established written documentation and oral presentation skills as requested by the project mentor.
    • Be punctual in their attendance, on task with any assignments, be an active participant with the project, and keep on target with the goals and objectives of the project keeping in mind the timeline.
    • Meet with mentor minimum 1 X/week to review status of project. Internet telephony communication (via Skype or alternate) with the USF Co-Mentor must follow this guideline as well if applicable.
    • Complete an End of Summer Experience Assessment and attend a NEXT STEPS session during the first week of the MSII year. This session is designed to broaden the student's exposure to scholarly/research concepts beyond their individual projects.
    • At the end of the summer scholarly experience, the student must engage the faculty mentor to assist in preparing and/or finalizing an abstract based on the summer scholarly project.
    • Be responsible for insuring the summer mentor completes an End of Summer Assessment discussing the student’s work during the summer scholarly experience as well as reflect on demonstrations of leadership and opportunities for improvement.
    • Complete the Annual Student Progress report at the start of each academic year.
    • Attend/present at the Annual SCP Student Symposium.
    • Present at USF Health Annual Research Day (if applicable). Can defer to MSIII or MSIV year if data not ready
  • Mentor Responsibilities for 

    Summer Scholarly Award Experience

    Mentors are to:

    • Guide the development of the scholarly or capstone project
    • Meet at minimum once per week with the mentee to discuss the progress of their scholarly project.
    • Help students to learn written documentation and oral presentation skills
    • Complete an End of Summer Scholarly Award Experience assessment. This document would assess the student’s work during this summer scholarly experience. In addition, it would reflect on student professionalism and leadership and offer the chance to share with students any opportunities for improvement.
    • Assist the student in preparing and/or finalizing an abstract based on their summer scholarly project.

    Future expectations would be to assist the medical student with presentations for the Annual SCP Student Symposium, USF Health Research Day, and local and national meetings.

  • Expected Outcomes for

    Summer Scholarly Award Experience 

    1. Submission of an abstract based on the summer scholarly project.  
    2. Submit an End of Summer Project Recap. Due prior to the start of the MSII year, the report is a reflective and summative commentary (minimum of 1000-1500 words – 1.5 spacing, moderate margins) about the funded summer work.  It should include how far the student progressed in terms of summer expectations and what more will be done regarding the project looking forward.