Martin G. Myers, Jr., M.D., Ph.D.

Marilyn H. Vincent Professor of Diabetes Research
Professor of Internal Medicine and Molecular & Integrative Physiology
University of Michigan Medical School
Director, Michigan Diabetes Research Center

May 9, 2019

"Make sure that you aren't doing things just because it is the standard or expected way to do things- make your career a series of active and well-considered choices for both your scientific and professional paths."

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Michael S. Parmacek, M.D.

Frank Wister Thomas Professor of Medicine
Chair, Department of Medicine
Perelman School of Medicine
University of Pennsylvania

March 15, 2018

"The parallel advancement of genetics, cellular engineering, bioengineering and computer science and personalized health information since the start of the 21st century, provides the next generation of physician scientists with a remarkably powerful set of tools to impact human health and disease.  However, what distinguishes great physician scientists is still the ability to identify, and focus, on addressing fundamentally important questions.  The journey of discovery is its own reward and you must follow where the science leads you.  There has never been a better time to be a physician scientists."


Nancy E. Lane, M.D.

Director, Center for Musculoskeletal Health
Endowed Professor of Medicine and Rheumatology
Director: Academic Geriatric Resource Program
Director: Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health (BIRCWH)
Co-PI: Center for Translational Research in Osteoarthritis and PI of Center for Specialized Centers for Research
UC Davis Health System

September 22, 2016

“It is a good idea to cultivate mentors for both role models and advocates that can introduce you to influential individuals in your scientific field, to help to navigate an academic institution and to advocate on your behalf to influential people in your scientific discipline both with in and outside your institution.  Mostly like one needs more than one mentor for these tasks. Also, today science is now performed in teams; therefore a physician scientist to day should learn to build multidisciplinary teams of scientists, often from different disciplines and training that can help to answer tough scientific questions.  Therefore, learn to manage a team.  Lastly, be patient and set realistic goals with input from both mentors and family, and reassess then every five years your progress and if these goals are still realistic and reflect your values.”


Paul Rothman, M.D.

Dean of the Medical Faculty
CEO, Johns Hopkins Medicine

April 21, 2016

“As physicians come under increasing pressure in an evolving health care delivery environment, we risk losing some of the science in medicine. Physician-scientists drive many major medical advances, and we must continue to protect and promote this professional pathway. Meanwhile, those of us who marry science and clinical care should lead by example -- remaining receptive and curious, seizing on the most intriguing questions that arise in the clinic, and pursuing new knowledge and new approaches to benefit patients.”


Eric R. Fearon, M.D., Ph.D.

Emanuel N. Maisel Professor of Oncology
Professor of Internal Medicine, Pathology
Professor of Human Genetics
Chief, Division of Molecular Medicine and Genetics
University of Michigan

May 7, 2015

“Choose research projects with care after a critical and thorough analysis of the relevant literature, based chiefly on the importance of the problem and unanswered questions and not the currency of the topic or the expediency of potential approaches. Continue to gather in-depth basic science knowledge and training throughout your career and resolve to master new methods and technologies to advance your work.  Give abundantly of your time as an engaged mentor and as a constructive critic and advocate for your colleagues, locally and nationally.”

Edward J. Benz, Jr., M.D., F.A.C.P.

President and Chief Executive Officer, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
CEO of Dana-Farber Cancer Center
Richard and Susan Smith Professor of Medicine
Professor of Pediatrics
Professor of Genetics and Faculty Dean Emeritus for Oncology, Harvard Medical School

September 11, 2014

"Dear Fellow Members of the Tinsley Randolph Harrison Society, Thank you once again for the honor and privilege of honorary membership in the TR Harrison Society. My visits to Vanderbilt have been wonderful experiences, made even more enjoyable by the opportunity to spend time with students, residents, fellows and junior faculty. Thank you for your extraordinary hospitality. At my career stage, I get asked occasionally to reflect on a life in academic medicine and on the advice one should give to those considering embarking on such a career during these especially challenging times.

I write now to share with you my strong encouragement that you pursue the career that you dream of in academic medicine. When asked to discuss these matters, I often note that we should be far less concerned about what the future might hold than we are about who will be there to deal with it. Academic medicine has passed through many perilous epochs during my half century in the field, and emerged from each one stronger and more impactful than before. It is easy to imagine the challenges we face now to be the greatest ever, and they may well be. However, there is no doubt that the world needs academically oriented physicians and clinically oriented scientists more than ever. The opportunities to use the incredible progress that the life sciences and technologies have made to address some of the greatest challenges to humanity are greater than ever before. These opportunities may not be the same or seem as “easy” or “lucrative” as those your predecessors had, but remember that they felt the same way about their early opportunities! Life in academic medicine can seem at times to be frustrating, too complicated, and too insecure, but, relative to any other high level endeavor, our careers are actually more secure and more open in terms of allowing us to pursue our burning interests while doing good for our patients. That is something that simply gets better and better as you stick with your career. Great opportunities will lie in front of you. The fact that they may be somewhat different than those of your predecessors suggests to me that that will be a major reason why you, when it is time for you to give a message like this to your successors, will be able to look back on your work and that of your colleagues as more transformative than any in the history of medicine and biomedical sciences. Good luck and Godspeed to each and every one of you.”


Bruce D. Walker M.D.

Director, Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard
and Harvard University Center for AIDS Research
Phillip T and Susan M Ragon Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Professor of the Practice, Institute for Medical Engineering and Science, MIT
Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Adjunct Faculty, Nelson Mandela School of Medicine
Research Associate, Center for the AIDS Programme of Research  in South Africa (CAPRISA)

December 12, 2013

"What has made my career as a physician scientists so meaningful to me is that I have always relied on my clinical experiences to guide my research efforts.  Being on the clinical service as an infectious disease clinician specializing in HIV/AIDS has thus not been a burden, drawing me away from research, but it has been quite the opposite—it has given me a lens to maintain my research focus on the most important challenges facing patients.  Such integration of research and clinical care is what makes it such a blessing to be a physician scientist.”


Mary E. Klotman, M.D.

R.J. Reynolds Professor
School of Medicine
Chair, Department of Medicine
Duke University Medical Center

April 25, 2013

“Don’t be afraid to take the necessary detour to get the skills and training to become a physician scientist. Over time the integration of clinical expertise and research interests can be integrated.  When that happens, this career path is incredibly fulfilling in the long run!”


Mark E. Anderson, M.D., Ph.D.

William Osler Professor of Medicine
Director, Department of Medicine
Johns Hopkins University Department of Medicine
Physician in Chief, Johns Hopkins Hospital

January 31, 2013

“Find a great mentor or mentors. Be willing to ‘synthesize’ a mentor from several individuals.  Pick an important unmet need where a solution could favorably impact patients, and ask fascinating questions that engage you, compel your collaborators, and persuade funding agencies.  Try to be fearless.  Write something everyday.  Be disciplined about sleep, exercise and spending time with people who you love.”


Juanita L. Merchant M.D., Ph.D.

H. Marvin Pollard Professor of Gastrointestinal Sciences
Professor of Internal Medicine and Molecular and Integrative Physiology
Division of Gastroenterology
University of Michigan

May 5, 2011

“The scholars should be passionate about what they decide to focus their career on.   They should identify multiple mentors to provide guidance.  Different mentors will play various roles throughout their careers which is why mentorship is not embodied in just one or two people. Scholars should also when possible provide their mentors with feedback on their careers--both success and failures.”

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Jonathan A. Epstein, M.D.

Executive Vice Dean and Chief Scientific Officer
William Wikoff Smith Professor of Cardiovascular Research
Perelman School of Medicine

December 9, 2010

“When thinking about areas of investigation, consider looking outside of the specialty in which you want to finally specialize for training. If you want to be a cardiologist, and you only consider training with other cardiologists, you are likely to concentrate on the same questions that other cardiologists already think about. If you train yourself in an area outside the field, and bring novel thinking back to cardiology, you will be unique.”