Sewankambo Scholarship Program
Developing African Medical Leadership
The Sewankambo Scholarship Program couples outstanding African clinicians with at least one internationally-recognized investigator who commits to providing five years of substantive, on-going mentorship. During the five years, the program transitions the young clinicians into independent scholars and researchers, internationally recognized in their own right. The program creates protected research time, resources, and intensive mentoring opportunities for competitively selected individuals with high potential for success, enabling ambitious candidates at various stages of their career to succeed to degrees not often possible in resource-limited settings.
With an emerging cohort of young African investigators in the fields of infectious disease, the new local constraint has become the lack of resources to help these individuals make the transition from trainee researcher to career, academic researcher. Postdoctoral investigators frequently struggle to find adequate time, support, and sponsorship to focus their research and develop a focused expertise. Postdoctoral researchers require a supportive environment in which to incubate their careers, with a multidisciplinary team providing technical support for the full range of skills required to launch and sustain a research career. In 2011, recognizing these needs, the focus of the Sewankambo Program shifted to support postdoctoral researchers who have proven potential to successfully transition into long-term research careers.
The Sewankambo Postdoctoral Fellowship Program cultivates medical investigators with a good research track record and publications in peer-reviewed journals and provides intensive personalized and multi-disciplinary support to develop their skills in designing a study, writing proposals, and managing funding and study activities. Grants managers help the Fellows develop a long-term plan for their research careers and support them to find funded opportunities that fit into their plans. With mentorship being a key aspect of the program, the Fellows are paired with clinical research experts in their area of interest within IDI or Makerere University, and with an international mentor, with whom they develop a long-term professional relationship.