Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Medical Scientist Training Program

What Makes Northwestern MSTP Unique

Our comprehensive support system, with dedicated personnel guiding students along every step of the training program, sets Northwestern apart from other medical scientist training programs. The MSTP Leadership Team, our Program Director and Associate Directors work as a team to ensure the success of MSTP students. They provide direction through one-on-one meetings throughout the year, as well as advocate for MSTP students across the university.

One-on-One Guidance

Associate Director Melissa Brown, PhD, is committed to making sure students reach the appropriate milestones throughout the graduate phase of training. Through regular meetings, she can assess students' progress and provide the resources they need to meet their educational goals.

Associate Director Jayms Peterson, PhD, has an open-door advising policy for students at any stage of training. He is available to help identify issues and provide guidance. Through the Director Rounds program, he tracks and mentors students through the research stage of training. Additionally, Dr. Peterson assists with major transitions (beginning graduate phase, returning to medical school and preparing for residency), helping students use campus resources to meet their needs.

For students in later stages of clinical training, the Director Hossein Ardehali, MD, PhD, meets individually with every student along with the Deans in the Augusta Webster, MD, Office of Medical Education (AWOME) to help plan their clinical schedules and give advice on choosing a specialty.

MSTP Commitment to Diversity

The Feinberg School of Medicine including the MSTP is unique in their broad definition of diversity, which includes not only students from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, but also other racial and ethnic, religious, gender, and sexual identities; people with disabilities, and socioeconomic diversity”. 

Our MD-PhD Program is enriched by the diversity in our student population. We have trained dozens of students from backgrounds underrepresented in science and medicine who have gone on to be professors or research resident physicians at the country’s leading academic medical centers. Our Program’s personalized approach is one of our greatest assets, and it ensures that all our students achieve their potential.

If you are a student from a racial or ethnic minority group, a student from a disadvantaged background, or a student with a disability, we encourage you to apply to our Program. John E. Franklin, MD, MSc, Associate Dean of Minority and Cultural Affairs, Feinberg School of Medicine, and MSTP Diversity Officer, will confidentially monitor your application in parallel to the MSTP Admissions Committee to assure that you receive full consideration. Please contact Dr. Franklin at any point in the application process, especially if you are a disadvantaged or disabled student who wishes not to indicate your status on your AMCAS application.

More Unique Aspects

Diverse Clinical Experience

Beyond our formalized support system, our program offers outstanding clinical and research training opportunities. You will get clinical training in a variety of care settings with diverse patient populations. This rich educational experience is possible due to our many partner hospitals:

Advanced Research Facilities

The research component of training gives students access to some of the most technologically-advanced facilities in the nation, including:

Learn more about Northwestern Research Centers.

Current Student Program Involvement

Current students at Northwestern’s MSTP are highly involved in many aspects of the training program. The MSTP student council organizes mentorship opportunities, science and career speaker series, social events, and much more. The student council works closely with the MSTP office to also address any student concerns and help implement student-driven changes to office programming.

Post-graduate Opportunities

And the extraordinary experiences you will have through Northwestern MSTP can be a gateway to exciting career opportunities. Our graduates have gone on to outstanding residencies. Learn more about where our graduates have gone through our Alumni Directory.

Sarah Rice

Melissa Brown, PhD

MSTP Associate Director
Graduate Phase Advising


Jayms Peterson, PhD

MSTP Associate Director
Program Advising