Although the basic board-required fellowship program is three years in duration, qualified fellows are encouraged to extend their experience for an additional year. During this period, fellows are normally appointed as an faculty-level instructor and become independent practitioners with protected research time. Overall, the fourth-year experience is viewed as a critical stepping stone to a successful career in academic medicine.
Career development opportunities
This fourth year affords fellows an opportunity to further enrich their clinical and research education, to augment their teaching skills, and to receive additional, invaluable training in a junior faculty role.
The Baylor College of Medicine Department of Pediatrics sponsors two career development programs for junior faculty:
- the Junior Faculty Career Assistance Group (CAG) and
- the Research and Clinician-Educator Special Interest Groups (SIGs).
Trainees who elect to become instructors are eligible to participate in these programs.
A popular component of the fourth-year experience involves participating as an attending physician on the hematology-oncology inpatient unit for 2 to 4 weeks, with the support and mentorship of senior faculty members.
Protected research time
Another key feature of the fourth year is that it offers an additional year of protected research time, which serves to enhance research productivity.
Fourth year accredited fellowships
Fellows with a J-1 visa may apply for a variety of specialized and accredited fourth-year fellowships: