Wylie Scholar Program

Co-sponsored by:


Vascular Cures' Wylie Scholar Program provides financial assistance to outstanding surgeons at the early stage of their careers, to help them develop as academic vascular surgeon-scientists.

As of 2014, the award is co-sponsored by the Society of Vascular Surgery (SVS) Foundation. Our partnership reflects our shared commitment to advancing the field through development of the next generation of leading vascular surgeon-scientists.

We've established a group of 19 surgeon-scientists at 14 institutions around the country who are transforming patient care. For each $150,000 granted, the Scholars generated $2.4 million in subsequent national research funding – a return on investment of nearly 16 to 1! Vascular Cures' initial research investment of $8 million has enabled another $42 million in funding – producing $50 million for research. To read more about the impact of the Wylie Scholar program see below or click here. To learn about the application procedure click here.



Since 1996, the Wylie Scholar program has provided 3-year career development grants of $50,000/year, with one awarded annually. It has been a great success in driving innovation in vascular medicine and care, and impact on the entire field. Most of the recipients have gone on to become chiefs at major academic centers across North America. They are a powerful network to accelerate Vascular Cures' programs, and a number are already playing leadership roles. Three of them are on our Scientific Advisory Board. Seven of them will attend the Vascular Research Summit.

Each year, the new grantee is selected by a committee of previous Wylie Scholars. The power of the selection process is demonstrated by the fact that the average Return on Investment in terms of follow-on funding is over 16:1


    • The 2016 awardee and 19th vascular surgeon scientist to receive the Wylie Scholar Award is Dr. Ryan McEnaney, Assistant Professor of Vascular Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine (UPMC). He is the 4th to receive it at UPMC, a tribute to the leadership of Dr. Edith Tzeng, the 2001 awardee. Dr. McEnaney received this award for his research into growing new arteries to restore blood flow for patients who are unable to have surgery ("Purinergic Signaling and Arteriogenesis"). His research seeks to understand the biochemical signaling mechanisms that allow collateral vessels to grow around blocked arteries, thus circumventing the need for invasive bypass surgery.

    • Dr. Mohammed Zayed, the 2015 Wylie Scholar, is Assistant Professor of Surgery at Washington University School of Medicine. His mentor is Dr. Rob Thompson – the first recipient of the Wylie Scholar award in 1996. Dr. Zayed is investigating the reasons why diabetics develop a unique lipid profile leading to peripheral artery disease ("The Role of Phospholipids In Diabetic Peripheral Arterial Disease").  Dr. Zayed has presented the progress of his research at meetings of the American Heart Association.

    • Our 2014 Wylie Scholar, Dr. Matthew Corriere from Wake Forest University, is also the leader of Project Voice. His Wylie research ("Facilitating Shared Treatment Decision-Making for Peripheral Artery Disease") is aimed at increasing participation of patients in their own care by creating an iPad-based tool to enable physicians to better understand the patient's goals and involve them in treatment decisions. This tool may be usable as part of Project Voice, and Project Voice may add robustness to Dr. Corriere's funding proposals to extend its development. He has taken a position at the University of Michigan where he will continue both the Wylie project and being a leader of Project Voice.

    • The 2010 recipient of the Wylie Scholar award, Dr. Bryan Tillman at UPMC (3rd grantee at UPMC), recently let us know about two new funded research areas in his laboratory. The first is a retrievable stent that would improve the ability of non-vascular surgeons to manage life threatening injuries among wounded soldiers and in the civilian trauma bay. It allows non-vascular surgeons to rapidly place a stent using a novel radiofrequency guidance approach. The stent can be removed when no longer needed or when dedicated vascular expertise and imaging become available. Dr. Tillman's second new project is an organ perfusion stent. The critical shortage of donor organs is a major obstacle to organ transplantation, and many are discarded each year as a result of injury from poor perfusion during organ recovery.  Dr. Tillman has completed pre-clinical testing of a dual chambered stent that preserves donor physiology while ensuring vascular perfusion of organs.  This approach is expected to rescue a significant pool of otherwise unused organs among consented donors.

    • The long-term power of the Wylie Award is shown by the 1998 recipient, Barry Rubin, BSc, MD CM, PhD, FRCSC, Professor of Surgery at the University of Toronto and Chair and Program Medical Director of the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre (PMCC). Dr. Rubin is also Chair and CEO of the University Health Network Academic Medical Organization which manages the allocation of teaching, research, and innovation funds from the Ministry of Health to 750 physicians, and represents 4,000 academic physicians on the Ontario Academic Medicine Steering Committee, the mandate of which is to develop policy to advance the goals of academic medicine. Dr. Rubin has created an innovation funding program that pairs business leaders with medical professionals to evaluate proposals in terms of cost-effectiveness as well as long term patient impact. The PMCC Innovation committee is an interdisciplinary program that encourages all members of the healthcare community to develop innovative approaches that will enhance the quality of patient care. Click here to read an article from 2012 that describes the program.

Application Procedure


Applications for the 2017 award are due on March 1, 2017. Please click here to download the application

The Wylie Scholar Program has created a network of talented academic surgeons, many of whom have become leaders in vascular surgery and research at major medical centers throughout North America. Vascular Cures will award each Wylie Scholar $50,000 per year for up to three years, subject to an annual review by the committee. The maximum award available for any Scholar is $150,000. Payment of awards will be made to the candidate’s institution, and the institution will be responsible for disbursing all funds and for the administration of the grant. Vascular Cures does not pay indirect costs.

The award may be used to support research in the following areas: basic science, translational, clinical research, outcomes/health services research, teaching, community service, and patient care. No later than two months after the funding year, the awardee will submit an update of progress and expenses for the previous year. This will be evaluated by their respective Chief of Vascular Surgery and by the Vascular Cures Review Committee.

To be eligible for consideration, Wylie Scholar candidates must hold a full-time faculty appointment as a vascular surgeon with active privileges at a medical school accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education in the United States or the Committee for the Accreditation of Canadian Medical Schools in Canada. Only one nomination per institution per year will be considered. The following conditions must be met:

  • The candidate must hold a valid and current certification from the American Board of Surgery, or the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, in general surgery or vascular surgery.
  • The candidate must be an active, practicing clinical vascular surgeon.
  • The candidate must present convincing evidence of rigorous research training and significant research accomplishments to date.
  • The candidate must not be currently funded by a career development award from the National Institutes of Health, Veterans Affairs, American Heart Association, or similar extramural funding agencies. Concomitant awards similar in size to the Wylie Scholar (e.g. from professional societies such as the American College of Surgeons) must be disclosed and will be considered on an individual basis.
  • The candidate must prepare and present a challenging research plan to be completed during the term of the award.
  • The candidate must have a research mentor who will be an additional resource for his or her research.
  • The Chairman of the Department of Surgery must guarantee that the candidate will have 40% protected time available to devote to the research investigation, as well as facilities, equipment and resources to execute the proposed studies.
  • The candidate is expected to participate in the Vascular Cures Wylie Scholar award event each year during their research grant tenure. This includes participating in a scientific interchange with Vascular Cures Board of Directors and donors. Up to $1,800 of the annual stipend may be used for travel expenses and one night of lodging.

The Wylie Scholar Award Committee, established jointly by Vascular Cures and the Society for Vascular Surgery, will select the Scholar and present their recommendation to the Vascular Cures Board of Directors for final approval. The key criteria for selection of the potential Wylie Scholar will be a demonstrated aptitude for and interest in vascular research, skill and promise in vascular surgery, teaching ability, and leadership qualities. Selected candidates may be personally interviewed prior to the final selection.