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Visiting International Scholars Program

Visiting International Scholars Program (VISP)

April - June 2018
Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine
Winston-Salem NC

SPRING APPLICATIONS ARE NOW CLOSED.  Applicants will be notified by January 1, 2018.
Applications for the Fall cycle will open April 1, 2018.

The Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine (WFIRM) places the highest priority on education and training and is committed to facilitating global knowledge exchange and collaborative networks. WFIRM regards the presence of visiting scholars as being of strategic importance to fostering international education and the advancement and internationalization of the field to result in the development of new regenerative medicine therapies, products and support technologies. The WFIRM Visiting International Scholar Program (VISP) enables international scientists, clinicians and physician-scientists to participate as Visiting Scholars at WFIRM, an internationally recognized leader in regenerative medicine with more than 450 scientists and staff in areas such as biomedical and chemical engineering, cell and molecular biology, surgery, and medicine. It is also where the first implanted laboratory grown organ was produced. The program’s objectives include:

  • Exposing international scientists, clinicians and physician-scientists (ranging from MS, PhD, MD, postdoctoral fellows to established senior investigators) to multidisciplinary research projects that address real-world clinical needs,
  • Developing ability to interact with other disciplines by providing training in a strong team-based environment,
  • Encouraging and developing the next generation of regenerative medicine global scientists and clinicians to explore the potential applications of regenerative medicine,
  • Develop and establish an innovative model for international collaborative research and education and strengthen regenerative medicine research and training relationships internationally,
  • Engender new knowledge and discoveries and promote development of a globally-engaged regenerative medicine workforce.

2017 Fall International Scholars

Mentors and scholars (left to right): James Yoo, Emmanual Opara, Dafydd Visscher, Hector Diaz Garcia, Deborah Daramola, Aleks Skardal and Sang Jin Lee. Not pictured is Aaron Goldstein.
Mentors and scholars (left to right): James Yoo, Emmanual Opara, Dafydd Visscher, Hector Diaz Garcia, Deborah Daramola, Aleks Skardal and Sang Jin Lee. Not pictured is Aaron Goldstein.

Deborah Daramola MSc, Assistant Lecturer, Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering, Bells University of Technology, Ota-Ogun State University, Nigeria;  Mentors: Emmanuel Opara, PhD and Aaron Goldstein, PhD; Broad Research Focus: Fabrication of composite scaffolds for bone tissue engineering by electrospinning
Hector Diaz-Garcia, PhD Student in Medicine Research, Escuela Superior de Medicina, Instituto Po9litecnico Nacional, Mexico; Mentors: Aleksander Skardal, PhD, Thomas Shupe, PhD and Sang Jin Lee, PhD; Broad Research Focus: Biomaterial design and optimization of bioinks for 3D bioprinting of tissue constructs
Dafydd Visscher, PhD Student in Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine, Department of Plastic, Reconstructive and Hand Surgery, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam; Mentors: James J. Yoo, MD, PhD and Sang Jin Lee, PhD; Broad Research Focus: Development of tissue-specific ECM-based bioink for elastic cartilage regeneration

VISP & You

VISP provides should-to-shoulder research collaborations and training in the state-of-the-art tools and approaches with WFIRM scientists in the field of regenerative medicine that address real-world clinical needs. An alignment of interests between visiting scholars and WFIRM researchers contributes to the richness of the experience for visiting scholars as well as providing valuable contributions to advancing both the field and the intellectual life of the visiting scholar and their respective host institution, WFIRM faculty, staff and students. Collaboration is possible in a wide range of areas including biomaterials, cell and molecular biology, physiology, biomedical engineering, controlled release systems, biochemistry, stem cells and their progenitors, and gene therapy, and tissue engineering. Visiting scholars are welcome to participate fully in the intellectual life of WFIRM and will participate in a variety of didactic activities, attend regenerative medicine seminars to learn more about the different areas of the field.  View list of faculty with their areas of research expertise.

Length of Stay

The VISP provides short-term, scientific training and research rotations for eligible applicants. Visiting scholars work closely with and learn from their jointly selected faculty mentor on topics of mutual interest for a three month period. The short-term research rotations occur each Fall and Spring. Specific program dates, deadlines and notification regarding acceptance are provided in the table below. The Visiting Scholar designation is dependent upon individuals securing a J-1 visa.

2018-2019 Deadlines

Program Cycle
and Dates
E-Applications OpenDeadline E-Application SubmissionE-Notification of
Spring 2018
April 16, 2018-
June 29, 2018
October 31, 2017November 30, 2017January 15, 2018
Fall 2018
October 1, 2018-December 14, 2018
April 1, 2018May 1, 2018June 15, 2018



The VISP is open to outstanding international scientists, clinicians and physician-scientists (ranging from MS, PhD, MD, postdoctoral fellows to established senior investigators) who express strong interest in regenerative medicine research. Previous research experience in a biological and /or regenerative medicine laboratory is highly desirable, but not required.

How to Apply

Applications for the Spring cycle are closed. Applications for the Fall 2018 cycle will open April 1, 2018.  In order to be considered for the Visiting International Scholar Program, interested applicants must complete an on-line application which consists of the following:

  • Completed on-line E-Application and associated materials including:
    • Full curriculum vitae
    • Most recent academic transcript
    • Short statement of research interests and professional goals
    • Minimum of two letters of recommendation
    • Up to three reprints of publications

VISP Expectations

  • Applicants must also be able to understand and possess verbal and written fluency in English. Student applications whose first language is not English must submit their TOEFL or an equivalent test score or verification of this competency.
  • Visiting Scholars are responsible for their own financial arrangements, including travel and housing
  • Must obtain leave from the home institution
  • Assume financial responsibility for visa processing fees


Visiting International Scholars Program Contact/Information:

Joan F. Schanck, MPA; 336-713-1201


Quick Reference

Institute for Regenerative Medicine

Phone 336-713-7293
Fax 336-713-7290

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