The St. Jude mission—to advance cures, and means of prevention, for pediatric catastrophic diseases—resonates throughout the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. We welcome students into three programs. Each program creates a pathway into becoming a scientific leader, an independent and creative thinker who can advance cures:
We focus on teaching basic scientific principles and connecting these to current scientific research. Our faculty includes basic science researchers, data scientists, public health leaders and expert clinicians.
“Our reputation for scientific and clinical excellence has been achieved by following a simple formula–hiring the best researchers and providing them with the best facilities. We used the same simple formula to create the Graduate School, which boasts a graduate faculty of internationally renowned investigators.”
Stephen White, DPhil
President and Dean
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
Pursue doctoral research with top basic and translational faculty. St. Jude has superb programs in pediatric oncology, infectious diseases, genetic and blood disorders, drug discovery and international medicine.
Learn to apply systematic, scientific and evidence-based approaches to facilitate delivery of timely, comprehensive and effective health care programs to children who need it most.
Gain the skills needed to not only develop and implement independent new clinical research but also to critically appraise the clinical research of others.
The Graduate School is housed on the St. Jude campus in the Marlo Thomas Center. This educational center was built in 2014 to provide a space for researchers and students to collaborate, learn and work together.
The Graduate School is a custom-designed, 4,600-square-foot space. It contains private study carrels for first-year students, a state-of-the-art teaching facility and administrative offices. There is also a student lounge equipped with a kitchenette, games and large-screen television.
In addition to the Graduate School, the Marlo Thomas Center also contains an auditorium, a lecture hall, meeting rooms, a large atrium and the Biomedical Library. The library is conveniently located adjacent to the Graduate School, maintains an extensive journal collection, and provides easy access to 4,800 electronic journals, 2,600 e-books and several databases. In addition, the library maintains an in-house collection of reference books and journals.
State-of-the-art videoconferencing capabilities enable faculty, staff and students to share ideas, discoveries and clinical information with experts and colleagues at other institutions. With more than 400 seats, the auditorium features folding desktops and outlets for electronic devices. The lecture hall seats 68 in a semicircle, giving it a stadium feel. The auditorium and lecture hall are powered by technologies that support the hosting of scientific conferences, academic lectures, institutional seminars, meetings and symposia.
Seating areas are interspersed throughout the Marlo Thomas Center to foster idea-sharing. Inviting colors and comfortable couches encourage small, informal gatherings.
Additionally, huddle rooms and meeting rooms, which are distributed throughout the Center, are custom designed to support informal and impromptu brainstorming sessions and discussions. These rooms contain high-definition monitors, cameras and wall-mounted interface panels that allow users to control the technology settings and interact with remote participants.
The mission of the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences is to educate and train future generations of scientists seeking to understand the molecular basis of human disease and develop novel therapies based on that understanding.
The St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences is designed to maximize student potential through self-directed learning, with guidance by world-renowned researchers and clinicians. Instruction is given in a dynamic environment that annually provides education and training to more than 200 affiliated undergraduate and graduate students, 300 postdoctoral fellows, 170 medical students and 45 clinical fellows. Collaborative and translational research enables students to choose individualized paths to success and leadership in scientific discovery. These opportunities also raise awareness of the value and urgent need to develop young scientists who will discover cures and advance treatments for catastrophic childhood diseases.
The St. Jude Graduate School officially launched November 2015. The school represents a major milestone in the history of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital (St. Jude).
Training biomedical scientists has always been a key component of the hospital’s mission. Hundreds of postdoctoral fellows, medical students and clinical fellows contribute to ongoing patient care and research every year. Graduate student training has also been an educational priority, historically occurring through affiliations with other schools and colleges.
St. Jude leadership recognized that the world-class faculty, research and facilities at St. Jude represent the perfect environment for elite graduate training, particularly in translational medicine. This idea continued to evolve over the years, and in June 2015, the hospital’s Board approved the school’s establishment.
The subsequent development of the school has been rapid. The Tennessee Higher Education Commission officially approved the school in November 2015; St. Jude created a Board of Trustees and Advisory Board and recruited a highly experienced staff in 2016. With the infrastructure and curriculum update, the inaugural class arrived on campus July 2017.
Third-year student Matthew Bell talks about his grad school experiences with his mentor, Stephen Gottschalk, MD, Bone Marrow Transplantation & Cellular Therapy chair and grad school faculty member.