Select Page
Early Career Development Course at ACRM Conference: Progress in Rehabilitation Research #PIRR2017

Early Career Development


Do NOT miss this course!

It’s the best advice you’ve not yet heard

“Successful Interdisciplinary Research in Academics & Industry”

WHEN: WED 25 OCT 2017
TIME: 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Early Career Development Course supported by the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at the Icahnn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

Register Now Online>>

Questions?  Click To Call or Register By Phone:  +1.866.405.3489


NEW! For incredible value, this course is included in the WORLD PASS

Held the day the CORE Conference kicks-off, the Early Career Development Course is a perennial favorite. This unique session connects early career rehabilitation researchers with seasoned professionals who serve as mentors to answer specific questions regarding career development and funding opportunities.

This year, a truly incredible agenda is on tap with renowned speakers and moderators. The course will focus on how to become successful conducting interdisciplinary research in not only traditional academic settings, but also non-traditional settings, such as in industry.

There will be one-on-one and small group opportunities to learn first-hand from successful researchers and clinicians — all with rich backgrounds and varied experiences to share.

Connecting early career rehabilitation researchers with seasoned professionals.

The course will provide opportunities to learn from successful researchers and clinicians who have been able to work with individuals from different settings and backgrounds. Through didactic presentations, panel discussions, one-on-one networking, and small group discussions, the attendees will be able to focus on career development issues faced when conducting research in academic, clinical or industry settings.

Continuing Educational Credit is included in registration

Designed to provide an ideal venue for connecting with seasoned professionals, this annual course has become a conference favorite of early career attendees seeking answers and advice to guide career decisions. With a particular focus on career development issues relevant to early career researchers, this program comprises didactic presentation, panel discussion, one-on-one networking, and small group discussions.


Early career researchers, clinician scientists, and clinicians interested in starting a research agenda will find the course especially beneficial. Attendees range from graduate students nearing the completion of their degree, to postdoctoral scholars and junior faculty. The course program changes annually, enabling attendees to enjoy a unique and informative experience year after year.

Register Now Online >>

Questions?  Click To Call or Register By Phone:  +1.866.405.3489

Saurabha Bhatnagar


“Participating in the ACRM Early Career Development Course at the ACRM Conference connected me with unique mentoring opportunities in various disciplines of rehabilitation, which have continued to promote my development as a clinician and scientist.”


—Saurabha Bhatnagar, MD, Harvard Medical School / VA Boston, Innovation Officer & Medical Director of TBI/Polytrauma


Dr. Edward D, Wirth, III, MD, PhD, CMO of Asterias Biotherapeutics, Inc. will present the morning program keynote address.

Early Career Development Course at ACRM Conference — it's the best advice you've not yet heard.



Dr. Theresa Pape, DrPH, MA, CCC-SLP/L from the Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine will moderate a panel of experts, including:

  • Edward D. Wirth, MD, PhD, CMO, Asterias Biotherapeutics, Inc.
  • Dr. Ayanna Howard, PhD, MBA, Linda J. and Mark C. Smith Chair Professor, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • W. Scott Selbie, PhD, C-Motion LLC
  • Damien Bates, MD, PhD, FRACS, MBA, CMO and Head of Research, SanBio, Inc.


The course will then include three breakout sessions led by early-career, mid-career and senior rehabilitation scientists:

  • Productive Writing:
    Dr. Stephanie Kolakowsky-Hayner, PhD, CBIST, FACRM
    , Associate Professor of Research, ‎Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
  • Support of Clinical Trials:
    Dr. Reza Ehsanian, MD, PhD
    , Santa Clara Valley Medical Center
  • Basics of Clinical Trial Design:
    Dr. Ralph Nitkin,
    PhD, Deputy Director, National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research (NCMRR); and Dr. Brooks Wingo, PhD, Assistant Professor, University of Alabama at Birmingham


Unless otherwise noted speakers are confirmed.

8:00 AM


8:15 AM

Keynote Address with continental breakfast:

Dr. Edward D. Wirth, III, MD, PhD – CMO of Asterias Biotherapeutics, Inc.

  9:15 AM

 Distinguished Scholars Panel Session

Q&A Drs. Theresa Pape – moderator; Drs. Edward D. Wirth, Ayanna Howard, W. Scott Selbie, Damien Bates

10:45 AM

Break (15-min)

11:00 AM

Breakout sessions

Productive Writing (Dr. Stephanie Kolakowsky-Hayner), Support of clinical trials (Dr. Reza Ehsanian), and Basics of Clinical Trial Design (Drs. Ralph Nitkin and Brooks Wingo)

 11:50 AM


12:00 PM

Mentoring lunch

A Mentoring Lunch will offer participants the opportunity to discuss various career development topics with a course mentor in a small group setting.

1:00 PM

Early Career Opportunities: News You Can Use Panel featuring representatives of NIH, CDC, VA, and NIDILRR selected foundations

Dr. Ralph Nitkin, NIH; Dr. Alexis Peterson, CDC; Dr. Stuart Hoffman, VA; Dr. A. Cate Miller, NIDILRR

2:00 PM

Emerging Scholars Panel Session

An Emerging Scholars Panel Session of early career research fellows will also share the challenges and successes they experienced while working towards independence. Moderator: Dr. Shilpa Krishnan; Drs. Amy Herrold, Amol Karmarkar, Stephen Estes, Jennifer Iddings

2:45 PM

Course wrap-up & evaluations

3:00 PM

Transition to Early Career & First-Time Attendee Welcome to ACRM


Early Career Development Course Testimonial by Valerie Hill


Upon completion, participant will be able to:

  1. Describe multiple career paths and trajectories in rehabilitation research in clinical, academic, and industry settings.
  2. identify at least three major funding opportunities for early career rehabilitation researchers.
  3. discuss at least two key strategies in collaborating with academic, clinical, or research settings.
  4. demonstrate at least three tips and tricks to becoming a productive writer, or designing or supporting a clinical trial.


Monique R. Pappadis, MEd, PhD
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (UTMB)


Dr. Pappadis is an Assistant Professor of the Division of Rehabilitation Sciences, School of Health Professions at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (UTMB) and an Investigator at the Brain Injury Research Center of TIRR Memorial Hermann. She is also a Research Career and Development Core Scholar of UTMB’s Claude D. Pepper Center and a Scholar of the Translational Research Scholars Program through the Institute for Translational Sciences. She has a diverse background in biological sciences, psychology, health education and social work, with specific training in measurement development, health education and promotion, psychoeducational interventions, and mixed methodologies. In addition, her bilingual skills in Spanish has allowed her to conduct field research assessing the needs of individuals with limited English proficiency and working with persons from diverse backgrounds. Her research includes the role of neurocognition on outcomes after brain injury, minority aging, health disparities, and addressing gender, language, and cultural differences related to outcomes after injury. She has over 13 years of experience conducting patient-centered outcomes research in the area of stroke and traumatic brain injury research. She has expertise in stakeholder engagement, patient-centered outcomes research, conducting qualitative interviews, analyzing data, and integrating quantitative methodologies, and developing educational interventions and resources to address the needs of patients with brain injury and their caregivers. Dr. Pappadis has won several research awards, made several national and international presentations, published 18 peer-reviewed publications, and disseminated several educational materials for persons with brain injury and their caregivers. She is currently the chair of the Early Career Development Course Task Force and Early Career Officer for ACRM’s BI-ISIG Executive Committee. She is active in numerous ACRM Task Forces.


Damien Bates, MD, PhD, FRACS (Plast.), MBA
SanBio, Inc.

Damien BatesDr. Bates is the Chief Medical Officer & Head of Research for SanBio, Inc. a stem cell company based in both Tokyo and Mountain View, California. Prior to his current position at SanBio, Dr. Bates has held senior executive & leadership roles in clinical development and medical affairs in multiple US based companies including Baxter, Organogenesis and Allergan. As Chief Medical Officer of Organogenesis, he successfully led the first and only BLA approval of an allogeneic cell based product in the US in 2012. Dr. Bates has also led the design and execution of over 20 IND, IDE and CTN studies across drugs, biologics and devices in the US and Asia and has had extensive regulatory interactions with the FDA, PMDA and EMA around the development and approval of cell based medicines. Dr. Bates received his medical degree from the University of Sydney, his PhD in Developmental Biology from the University of Melbourne, his Fellowship in Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery from the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, and his MBA from the Wharton Business School.


Stephanie Kolakowsky-Hayner, PhD, CBIST, FACRM
Icahn School of Medicine, Mt. Sinai

Stephanie Kolakowsky-Hayner, PhD, CBIST, FACRM

Dr. Kolakowsky-Hayner is the Associate Professor of Research, in the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at Icahn School of Medicine, Mt. Sinai. She is also BTF’s principal investigator on the Brain Trauma Evidence-Based Consortium project funded by the US Army Research, Development and Engineering Command. Dr. Kolakowsky-Hayner serves as the immediate past chairman of the board of the Brain Injury Association of California. She is a member of the Academy of Certified Brain Injury Specialists’ Board of Governors and the ACRM Board of Governors.

Dr. Kolakowsky-Hayner is the Vocational-Community Issues Panel Chair for the Brain Injury Association of America and Mount Sinai’s Guidelines for Rehabilitation and Chronic Disease Management of Adults with Moderate to Severe Traumatic Brain Injury development project. She also serves on the Community Advisory Board of the DOD-funded Chronic Effects of Neurotrauma Consortium and as the co-chair of the 4th Federal Interagency Conference on Traumatic Brain Injury. Dr. Kolakowsky-Hayner has over 20 years progressively independent experience in brain injury related clinical and research activities. To date, she has made more than 180 professional presentations and published over 170 peer-reviewed manuscripts, book chapters, and other information materials for professionals and consumers with disabilities.


Reza Ehsanian, MD, PhD
Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, Stanford University

Reza Ehsanian

Dr. Reza Ehsanian is a physician-scientist whose academic interest include the translation of basic science to clinical practice to ultimately improve outcomes for individuals with SCI, TBI and chronic pain. He is the Health Care Program Manager at the Rehabilitation Research Center in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center and a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Department of Neurosurgery at Stanford University. Dr. Ehsanian’s research focus includes implementing neural cells known as oligodendrocyte progenitor cells, which are produced from human embryonic stem cells to promote repair of damaged spinal cord tissue (NCT02302157); rTMS to restore function after severe TBI (NCT02366754); and the development of regenerative medicine techniques for pain management. Dr. Ehsanian has lead mutli-center, multi-discipline research projects as a scientist at NASA Ames Research Center prior to his medical training at Stanford University, doctoral training at Oxford University, Christ Church College and Howard Hughes Medical Fellowship at National Institutes of Health where he developed his research interested for translational medicine. He has authored a book chapter, published peer-reviewed journal articles, given oral presentations and invited talks nationally and internationally; he co-founded South Bay Vestibular Support Group (501(c)(3)), whose mission is to provide a ground- and internet-based forum to educate, support and provide rehabilitation resources.



Ralph Nitkin, PhD
National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research (NCMRR)

Ralph Nitkin, PhD

Ralph Nitkin, PhD, is the Deputy Director for the National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research (NCMRR), which is located within the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) at the NIH. He received his undergraduate and Master’s degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the area of biological sciences, and his Ph.D. from the University of California, San Diego in cellular neurobiology. His postdoctoral studies at Stanford University and later work as an assistant professor at Rutgers University focused on the cellular and molecular basis of nerve-muscle synapse formation. For the past 25 years he has worked as a science administrator at the NICHD, first in the area of mental retardation and developmental disabilities and for the last fifteen years in the area of medical rehabilitation. Within the Rehab Center, he is also active in the area of training and career development and research infrastructure.


Theresa Pape, DrPH, MA, CCC-SLP/L, FACRM
Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine

image: Theresa Louise-Bender Pape

Dr. Pape is a Clinical Neuroscientist with the Hines Veterans Administration Research Service and a Research Associate Professor at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, Department of PM&R. Dr. Pape earned her Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology in 1986. She provided speech-language services to persons with TBI for several years. Dr. Pape then completed a pre-doctoral fellowship with the VA Health Services Research and Development Service in 1999 as well as earning her doctorate of public health (Dr. PH) in 1999. Dr. Pape completed a post-doctoral fellowship in 2001 at Northwestern’s Institute for Health Services Research and Policy Studies, which is an Advanced Rehabilitation Research Training Program co-sponsored by NIDDLR and NRSA. After completing this fellowship in 2001

Dr. Pape went on to receive three consecutive career development awards with the VA RR&D service. First, she received a Research Career Development Award (CDA I) to study rehabilitation measurement and outcomes post severe TBI. She subsequently received an Advanced Research Career Development Award (CDA II) to study advanced neurosciences and neural plasticity. Dr. Pape completed her third award in 2010, a Career Development Transition Award, to study neural plasticity in neurorehabilitation after TBI. Dr. Pape has a strong history of Investigator Initiated Research funding from several Federal agencies including the VA, NIH, NIDDLR and the DoD. Dr. Pape’s research track in Neuroplasticity in Neurorehabilitation of TBI integrates two areas of expertise: measurement and translation clinical research. Currently, she has three clinical trials and two measurement projects funded.


Early Career Development Course 

INCLUDES: Exclusive access to this live educational course; networking with potential mentors, employers, funders, and collaborators; continuing education credit; Continental breakfast; boxed lunch; access to the Early Career & First-Time Attendee Welcome to ACRM; access to ACRM EXPO Opening Reception I. Non-member registration includes a 6-month introductory membership to ACRM.

HURRY Register early — save the most! Register now>>


through  22 OCT


The Early Career Development course is included in the WORLD PASS. See what else is included >>


LOCATION: Hilton Atlanta 255 Courtland St NE, Atlanta, GA 30303
More venue info >>

Early Career Development Course Participants

Please share / post these ads… & Link to this web page (shortlink):

 Oh the Places You'll GO! ACRM Early Career Development Course

Career-Lifting! ACRM Early Career Development Course

Join the ACRM Early Career Networking Group!

No need to wait for Atlanta to get involved! Check out the leadership and connect with the Early Career Networking Group now!

Click to Visit the Early Career Networking Group Web Page


ACRM Annual ConferenceProgress in Rehabilitation Research (PIRR#2017)

REGISTER ONLINE HERE or Register by Phone: +1.703.435.5335
ACRM Conference Home Page PROGRAM button REGISTER button
*For the latest programming info, schedule, session and faculty details, and room locations, please see the Searchable Online Program & Scheduler and/or the ACRM App.  Although significant changes are not anticipated, the schedules, sessions, and presenters posted on this website are subject to change.