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Our mission is to provide outstanding, cutting-edge clinical care, research, and state-of-the-art training in Otolaryngology

Department of Otolaryngology

T32 Research 7-year Track

​This program has training slots to include MD residents, PhD postdocs, PhD predocs, and short-term medical students. Dr. Herman Jenkins and Dr. Sue Kinnamon serve jointly as Co-Program Directors and Co-Principal Investigators of this grant.  The types of trainee categories associated with this T32 grant are:

• MD Resident Trainees 

• PhD Postdoc Trainees

• PhD Predoc Trainees

• Short-Term Medical Student Trainees (3 months)

The T32 Research Track faculty are designated as “Basic Science Mentors” and “Clinical Co-Mentors”.  All Basic Science Mentors have a PhD or an MD/PhD degree, and are on the graduate training faculty,  while the Clinical Co-Mentors have either an MD degree, or a PhD in Audiology and work primarily with patients, although most also have some research support. All trainees are required to have both a Basic Science Mentor, who will be the primary advisor, and a Clinical Co-Mentor, who will provide clinical/translational training as time is spent shadowing with them in clinic.  The participating Basic Science Mentors and Clinical Co-Mentors are referenced:

Basic Science Mentors

Clinical Co-Mentors


Goals and Objectives: 

The overall objectives of this program are (1) clinical trainees learn a rigorous approach to research necessary for a successful career in academic medicine, and (2) basic science trainees gain an appreciation for clinical questions and relevance. All our trainees will be required to focus directly on otolaryngology related research for their projects. Our goal is that after completing our program, the postdoctoral fellows and residents will have acquired the professional insights, scientific knowledge, networking skills, and perseverance required to establish an innovative and productive academic research career. The research interests of the department that are appropriate for our T32-funded program include Otology, Audiology, Rhinology, Laryngology, Head and Neck Cancer and the basic science related disciplines of hearing and balance and taste and smell.   

Trainees will be required to attend Grand Rounds, resident didactic lectures, a bi-weekly seminar series that follows these activities, and a special journal club, where each trainee will select a paper that has clinical relevance in their area of research.  Trainees also will be required to take or audit selected laboratory courses in head and neck anatomy so they will better appreciate the anatomical basis of disorders they observe in the clinic.  The Otolaryngology Dept. gives laboratory courses on various aspects of head and neck anatomy for the residents. These activities are in addition to the annual Resident Research Day, where trainees will give poster presentations, as well as attend regular journal clubs and other seminars on campus. Trainees will also be required to audit a grant writing course.

There aretwo separate tracks as part of the National Residency Match Program (NRMP) for application. The first is a Core Residency Track, which includes five years of training with a short term research block, and the second is a T32 Research Track, which includes seven years of training with a 24-month research block. Candidates submitting an application to the University of Colorado program may elect to apply to either or both but will be interviewed for only one track.  All trainees for this T32 grant, will be selected based on their interest in translational research.  The first resident was recruited and started during the first year of the grant (July 2013). This resident will pick a research advisor in the PGY2 year and begin their research block in the PGY3 year as a research trainee.  Thus, the first year of grant support for resident research training will begin in the third year of the grant.

PhD Postdoc Trainees: please contact

During year one, one candidate will be admitted for a two-year block of research and a new one will be admitted each year, giving two trainees per year in years 2-5 of the grant. We expect most of these trainees to apply directly to the laboratory they wish to join, but we will also advertise open training slots at appropriate scientific meetings, such as the ARO meeting for Auditory and Vestibular Sciences, the AChemS meeting for the Chemical Senses, and the Society for Neuroscience meeting. The postdoctoral trainees will spend the majority of their efforts in laboratory research, but a considerable time will be devoted to teaching them a wide range of research and professional skills. These skills include review of literature, formulation of important and testable hypotheses, critical thinking, experimental design and performance, innovative/cutting edge technologies and experimental approaches, recruitment of collaborators, teamwork, data analysis, effective oral and written communication of research ideas and results, successful grant writing, constructive critique of the work of others, personnel management, diplomacy, and responsible, ethical conduct of research. Our goal is to provide research training, essentially educational in nature, which advances the trainee’s professional career.

PhD Predoc Trainees:  please contact

Both Pre and Postdoctoral trainees will be required to apply for individual fellowships (e.g., NIH F30, F31 or F32) in their first year of support. We have a strong record of success in our students and postdocs obtaining NRSAs. If they are successful before the end of our 2-year appointment, the open slot will be made available to other qualified applicants, including medical students who wish to spend an additional year in their Mentor’s lab doing research. The general plan for graduate training is illustrated in the figure below.  

Otolaryngology Ph.D. training program. Students in our training program will finish the degree requirements in their chosen field and in parallel, will participate in Otolaryngology-specific training activities. Only major programs are shown.


We anticipate pre-doctoral trainees will join the program in the second year of their graduate program; they will have finished the majority of their course work and passed their preliminary exams. This is the point in their graduate career when they choose a mentor and research project. For students recruited through the BSP or MSTP, this is the juncture at which they also commit to a specific graduate program. Students can enter from any of the Anschutz Medical Center training programs, or they can enter from the Speech Language and Hearing Sciences Department (SLHS) at the Boulder campus. Pre-doctoral trainees will complete all requirements for their degree program in addition to participating in the specific otolaryngology training activities described for postdoctoral trainees. We anticipate any students from the Boulder campus will finish their graduate program in Boulder in parallel with the otolaryngology-specific training activities at the Anschutz Medical Campus. Although the Boulder campus is approximately 45 minutes from the Anschutz Medical Campus, many students in the SLHS Department obtain a majority of their clinical experience and conduct their research in the clinic here on the UCD campus, as this is where their patient populations are located and serviced. Thus, it is anticipated that these trainees will spend a substantial portion of their time here on campus and would thus be in a position to attend Grand Rounds, research seminars, journal clubs, etc. When this is not possible, these mandatory training activities will be video-conferenced.

Short-Term Medical Student Trainees:  please contact

Medical students often gain an interest in academic careers and research through interactions with a dedicated mentor early in their medical school studies. Indeed, to be competitive for a residency in otolaryngology today, one needs to have significant research experience, with abstracts and manuscripts submitted or published, to even gain interviews at most otolaryngology training programs.

Two medical student short-term trainees will be selected each year for experiences lasting up to three months. Our School of Medicine has an active Otolaryngology Interest Group with approximately 10 students participating from each class. The medical school has a strong commitment to develop physician scientists as evidenced by the School of Medicine Research Track Program that helps to identify and recruit outstanding medical students interested in otolaryngology at an early stage. All medical students at the University of Colorado are required to develop a long term active program of investigation or intense study as part of our medical curriculum.

To apply for a training slot, applicants will be required to submit written proposals to be evaluated and selected by the Recruitment Committee, which consists of the Residency Research Committee that oversees and evaluates resident research proposals.