The National Institutes of Health established the Research Centers in Minority Institutions (RCMI) Program in 1985, after Congress noted stark health disparities between minority and white Americans. The RCMI program develops and strengthens the research infrastructure of minority institutions by expanding human and physical resources for conducting basic, clinical, and translational research. The program supports four grants: 1) RCMI Center awards, 2) RCMI Infrastructure for Clinical and Translational Research (RCTR), 3) Clinical Research Education and Career Development (CRECD), and 4) RCMI Translational Research Network (RTRN). Institutions receiving these awards must award doctoral degrees in the health professions or health-related sciences and have a significant enrollment of students from racial and ethnic minority groups that are underrepresented in biomedical sciences.
Tuskegee University is one of sixteen institutions that receives funding from this program, for the purposes of increasing not only the presence of minority researchers in biomedicine but also studies in minority health. At Tuskegee University this funding has been used in multiple ways, most notably was the establishment of The Center for Biomedical Research (CBR)/RCMI Core Facility. This Core Facility enhances multidisciplinary research infrastructure for Tuskegee University by providing the resources, services and technical support required to not only stay on the cutting-edge of biomedical research but also forge new paths. This primary goal is achieved by providing instrumentation and personnel in two Cores. Core One addresses the need for lab instrumentation and Core Two provides resources in the areas of bioinformatics, computational biology and information technology.
The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD), a National Institute of Health division, supports the Tuskegee University Research Centers in Minority Institutions (RCMI), as well as these programs: RCMI Faculty Development (FD) Award, RCMI Clinical Research Infrastructure Initiative (RCRII), RCRII Clinical Research Faculty Development (CRFD) Award, and RCMI Planning Grants (PG).