The Administrative Core of the Center for Collaborative Research in Health Disparities, directed by the PI, oversees and supports all core activities, ensures that research activities focus on minority health and health disparities, and provides cohesiveness and direction at the program level. One of the major goals of the Administrative Core is the development and coordination of strong and targeted Career Enhancement Activities. This effort includes (1) a mentoring program to assist new and early-career investigators through career planning, development and grantsmanship by providing one-on-one professional mentorship to complement scientific mentorship; (2) a course in the skills necessary to be successful in a research career, including discussions of bioethical issues relevant to research; and (3) a seminar series focusing on the protection and commercialization of intellectual property, especially in a collaborative multidisciplinary setting. These activities are performed in coordination with other mentoring initiatives being conducted at the MSC or offered by the National Mentoring Research Network (NRMN) to avoid duplication of efforts and to leverage resources.
The Evaluation component monitors the overall progress of the Center for Collaborative Research in Minority Health and Health Disparities (CCRMHD) toward achieving its goal of enhancing the research capacity and infrastructure of the institution, with an emphasis on innovative collaborative research aimed at reducing health disparities affecting the Puerto Rican population. For evaluation purposes, the key activities and program goals have been incorporated into a Conceptual Framework. Milestones are used to measure the success of the overall program and achievement of outcomes.
Core activities overseen by the Administrative Core include: the Research Infrastructure Core which provides specialized research services in the areas of bioinformatics, genomics, proteomics, infectious diseases, and bioimaging to the three RO1-type research projects supported by the CCRMHD, as well as other research projects addressing minority health and health disparities; the Investigator Development Core, which supports pilot projects and serves as a focal point for promoting professional development of new faculty and early-stage investigators working on diseases that disproportionately affect the Puerto Rican population; the Community Engagement Core, which targets the development of long-term partnerships with community organizations relevant to the proposed research projects and facilitates the dissemination of CCRMHD services and research achievements. In addition, the Adminsitrative Core oversees the three RO1 type translational Research Projects covering the areas of basic biomedical, behavioral and health services/clinical research. These translational research projects (T1, T2, T4) addresses the causes of and/or develop and evaluate interventions to reduce health disparities relevant to the Puerto Rican population in the areas of cancer, cardiovascular diseases and childhood obesity. An inclusive governance structure includes the PI, the Core Directors, advisory committee members, external evaluator, mentor coordinator, as well as the administrative and technical staff.