In 1999 the University of Kentucky College of Medicine was awarded a five-year National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant of $2.5 million to develop and implement the Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health (BIRCWH) training program. Awarded through the NIH Office of Research on Women's Health, the grant provided career development and mentoring opportunities for junior M.D. and Ph.D. faculty members interested in establishing research careers related to Women's Health.
During its first five years, UK's BIRCWH program was extraordinarily successful in training interdisciplinary researchers. Fifteen BIRCWH scholars secured 16 independently funded grants as PI's, including four R01 grants and one National Science Foundation (NSF) grant, for a total of $7,691,750. BIRCWH scholars published extensively during that five-year period.
In June 2005, the same administrative team - consisting of the PI, co-directors and staff who successfully managed the BIRCWH program - received a five-year renewal.