The Mentored Experiences in Research, Instruction, and Teaching (MERIT) Program is a funded Institutional Research and Academic Career Development Award (K12) from NIH/NIGMS. It is facilitated through a partnership of the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), Lawson State Community College, Oakwood University and Stillman College.

The primary goal of the IRACDA-MERIT Program is to provide Postdoctoral Scholars with outstanding research and teaching experiences while improving the recruitment of students from underrepresented groups into the field of biomedical research. It includes 4 years of concurrent research training and teaching instruction. The research component incorporates laboratory-based instruction and professional skills development. The teaching component includes instruction in teaching pedagogy, course development, mentorship training and classroom teaching experiences.

Assistance with job placement upon successful completion of the IRACDA-MERIT Program is provided.