ASN's Mission

ASN leads the fight to prevent, treat, and cure kidney diseases throughout the world by educating health professionals and scientists, advancing research and innovation, communicating new knowledge, and advocating for the highest quality care for patients.

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Medical Students

The University of Chicago application is currently closed.

University of Chicago Application

The deadline to apply is Friday, January 17, 2020, at 4:00 p.m. EST.

Kidney TREKS, an initiative established by the American Society of Nephrology (ASN), is designed to foster interest in careers in nephrology and research through a week-long research course retreat and long-term mentorship program.

Course Description

The ASN Kidney TREKS at the University of Chicago (UChicago) is one of two week-long courses that provides medical students interested in nephrology opportunities to explore the field. UChicago will host a group of interested medical and PhD students for a week in the Windy City.

The Kidney TREKS UChicago Program includes:

  • Attending a week long, on-site course at the University of Chicago, July 25 - August 1, 2020. Tuition, travel support to Illinois, room and board are paid by ASN.
  • Becoming connected with a nephrologist mentor who will interact with the student over the course of medical school training, graduate school, or postdoctoral fellowship.
  • Attending ASN Kidney Week within two years of participating in the TREKS program with travel support as a part of the ASN Kidney STARS program.
  • Receiving complimentary membership to ASN with access to website resources for students.


  • Must be a medical student who has complete at least one year of medical school, a graduate student pursuing a PhD, or a postdoctoral fellow within his or her first year of training.
  • Must reside in North America.
  • This program is not for fellows already pursuing nephrology.

Program Modules

July 25 - August 1, 2020

Program modules will include the following:

  • Physiology: Participants will learn renal physiology with a bent toward real life applications in an interactive workshop. Ahead of the week, students will collect a 24-hour urine under normal and study conditions. Students will receive their baseline data and use it in various breakout groups in lecture throughout the day. Students will form two groups at the end of day and receive either the sodium or protein data to make predictions, analyze the data and prepare a presentation for the next day.
  • Glomerular diseases: During this module, participants will learn about GN from an entirely different perspective: a patient centered one. TREKS participants will begin follow clinical cases from presentation to biopsy to treatment and hear about the impact of disease from the patients themselves.
  • Genetics: During this module, participants will learn both the science behind genetic renal diseases but see them from a personal perspective. Students will receive training in genomic and mutation analysis and get an opportunity to meet with and interview patients and families with genetic renal diseases.
  • Outreach/Disparities: Participants will get out into the community and help screen at risk populations for kidney disease. Then, participants will experience a little window on our patients life through a surprise project!
  • Program Housing and Schedule

    Housing will be provided on the University of Chicago campus in single suites with a shared bathroom. Housing will be within walking distance of all campus facilities. For more details, click here.

    Click here for a sample program schedule.


    The course will be run by Benjamin S. Ko, MD.

    For questions or more information about the Kidney TREKS program, please contact ASN Workforce and Training Associate Riley Hoffman at or 202-400-2481.