Rationale: The use of advanced data science techniques for research and practice improvement in neurosurgery is in its infancy. Most neurosurgeons are unfamiliar with topics like Machine Learning, Deep Learning, and Artificial Intelligence (AI). However, these computational techniques are poised to revolutionize healthcare. Currently there are limited formal training opportunities available to neurosurgeons interested in gaining expertise in data science. Specialty-naïve courses do exist, but are often difficult to undertake within the confines of the neurosurgical workload. Additionally, neurosurgeons engaged in such coursework lack mentors within the specialty to help guide their scholarship, and coursework can seem distant from neurosurgical care.
Obtaining training in basic and advanced data science requires both mentorship and financial support, and the CNS Foundation Scholarship in Data Science will provide both on an individual basis as we seek to create a cadre of neurosurgeons with expertise in this subject. This training program will benefit both the individual neurosurgeons who take part in the program, as well as the field as a whole as these future leaders shape the ways in which data science will be integrated into neurosurgical research and practice.
Program Description: The program will be overseen by a mentorship committee, and once the scholar is selected and a research mentor is chosen, that person will join as the final member of the mentorship committee. The Scholarship will run through the academic year July 2023–June 2024, during which time the scholar will complete approved coursework, meet physically and remotely with his/her mentor, attend scientific meetings, and complete a research project.
After completion of the scholarship, the expectation is that this work will be submitted for presentation at the 2024 CNS Annual Meeting and a manuscript based on this work will be submitted to Neurosurgery. During the scholarship year, the scholar will join the CNS Data Science Committee to help with broader aspects of data science education for the entire membership and he/she will continue to serve on this committee for at least 1 year after completion of the scholarship.
Application Process: The application opened on January 30, 2022. Applicants should be neurosurgical residents in good standing with residency program support to spend 40 hrs/week on this project during the upcoming academic year. The committee will review the applications and chose a CNS Data Science Scholar for a term which will begin July 1, 2023. During the proceeding months, they will work with the selected scholar to identify a research mentor who will join as the final member of this mentorship committee. Together, this group will help the scholar craft his/her curriculum and research questions based on prior experience and career goals. Financial support of $20,000 will be available to support coursework, technical materials, and travel for research meetings and conferences.
This grant is funded through a generous donation from Viz.ai to the CNS Foundation.