SfN Member Matches Grass Foundation Grant for LATP
The Society for Neuroscience has received a Latin American Training Program (LATP) Challenge Grant from longtime SfN member John Simpson, professor emeritus of neuroscience and physiology at New York University. His donation will help fund LATP fellows’ travel and registration to the SfN annual meeting for the next five years.
Simpson’s donation answers a challenge grant from the Grass Foundation, which offered to match a donation from an individual. The foundation funds LATP fellows’ travel to the SfN annual meeting, as it did with the Ricardo Miledi Program from 2003 to 2012. The new combined grant will send a total of 75 fellows to the annual meeting over five years.
“The Latin American Training Program is exactly the type of experience that can be transformational for students, and I am pleased to help provide that,” Simpson said. “By collaborating with other scientists, learning from colleagues and mentors, and sharing science across international borders, these students gain insights and knowledge unlike anything they get in a traditional classroom. This program can catapult young trainees into their careers and forever change the way they approach their science. I am happy to be part of that.”
The Latin American Training Program launched in 2014 to increase neuroscience training and career development opportunities for young investigators from across the Latin American and Caribbean region. Important contributions to the program are also made annually by the International Brain Research Organization (IBRO) through its Latin American and US/Canada regional committees and the program year’s host institution. This extraordinary multi-partner effort is one of the program’s greatest strengths.
In its first year, 73 associates participated in a yearlong online program consisting of webinars, recorded content, and online discussions. In addition, 15 members of this class were selected as fellows and spent three weeks completing intensive in-person training on a scientific topic. The class of 2015 is even larger with 87 associates participating in the program, which will commence in August.
“The Grass Foundation is thrilled to learn of this generous contribution from an SfN member and supporter of the training program,” said Felix Schweizer, president of the Grass Foundation. “Dr. Simpson’s matching gift helps to ensure that a greater number of trainees will be able to participate, share their science, and get footholds in their careers. It also helps seed future generations of scientists from the Latin America region who will contribute to the increasingly global field of neuroscience.”
The class of 2014 fellows are scheduled to attend Neuroscience 2015 in Chicago. Their attendance at the meeting, made possible through the donations of Simpson and the Grass Foundation, enables each young scientist to present a poster about their research and interact with more than 30,000 colleagues from around the world.