Applying to the Institute

Summer Training and Mentored Research Program for Early Career HIV and Drug Abuse Prevention Investigators

Dates TBD
Fordham University Center for Ethics Education, New York City
Dr. Celia B. Fisher, Director

Now in its tenth year, the Fordham HIV and Drug Abuse Prevention Research Ethics Training Institute (RETI) is a training grant sponsored by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (#1R25DA031608, Principal Investigator, Celia B. Fisher, Director Center for Ethics Education). The RETI provides early career investigators in the social, behavioral, medical and public health fields with an opportunity to gain research ethics training. A major function of the RETI is also to conduct institute-funded research on ethical issues in HIV and drug use research. In doing so, RETI addresses the urgent need for HIV investigators who can identify and address ethical issues, engage drug-using and other at-risk communities in the construction and evaluation of population-sensitive research protections, and generate empirical data to inform ethical practice and policies for HIV prevention science. Through their funded Mentored Research Project (MRP), RETI fellows generate empirical data, publish their findings in a variety of high-impact academic journals, and are trained to apply for increasing grant opportunities. Fifty early career professionals have both extensively published their mentored research project (MRP) studies in high impact journals and/or given presentations internationally.

RETI fellows make a 2-year commitment that includes fully funded travel, lodging and meals for participation in summer programs held during two consecutive summers conducted by our interdisciplinary faculty of experts in HIV and substance abuse research ethics faculty.

The summer institutes offers lectures, discussions, skill-based exercises and mentoring for fellows to:

    • Gain expertise in national and international HIV and drug abuse research ethics issues including post-trial care, informed consent, culturally sensitive evaluation of research risks and benefit among drug using and other at-risk populations.
    • Acquire skills to draw on stakeholder perspectives to empirically examine research ethics challenges and to design and implement ethics enhancing interventions
    • Receive funding to develop, implement and disseminate findings from their mentored research project.
    • Obtain continuous assistance in writing for publication, presentation and future funding.

Mentored Research Project (MRP)

In addition to the summer training program, fellows also receive mentoring and faculty and peer feedback on a proposal for an original study that empirically examines a key ethical issue related to the fellow’s area of HIV and drug abuse prevention research. Fellows will receive a small grant of up to $30,000 for an approved mentored research project proposal. Data collection is expected to be completed at the end of year 1 and findings submitted for publication, presentations, or as pilot data for a grant in year 2. Mentored projects can be designed as a supplement to a current research investigation or as a stand-alone pilot project, and all projects must include some form of participant/community involvement appropriate to the study.


Applicants must have: (a) a medical or doctoral degree awarded in the last 10 years in social, behavioral, public health or related fields, (b) demonstrated scholarship in HIV and drug abuse prevention research; (c) no more than 10 years post-doctoral experience; and (d) meet requirements to apply for NIH funding. Special attention will be given to those applicants whose proposed research ethics plan includes drug-using populations. International applicants residing outside the U.S. & Canada may apply to the Institute as Santander fellows.


Please contact Rimah Jaber at for application deadlines and more information on the upcoming program.

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