The Tulane-Xavier Minority Health International Research Training (MHIRT) Program is sponsored by the National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities of the National Institutes of Health to provide short-term (10-12 weeks) research training opportunities for minority students interested in a career in international health research.
Sites sponsoring MHIRT students are bases for established international collaborative research programs for faculty of the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine (SPHTM). They cover a range of geographical locations, including Asia and South America, and a variety of international health disciplines (e.g., cardiovascular diseases, tuberculosis, diarrheal diseases, parasitic infections, perinatal morbidity, etc.). Each site specializes in a specific discipline based on the interests of the sponsoring faculty members. At each site, Tulane faculty are paired with overseas faculty who mentor MHIRT students during their research experiences.
The objectives of the MHIRT program are to:
- Increase awareness of international research issues and opportunities.
- Increase the number of minority students that pursue advanced degrees in basic sciences and biomedical and behavioral research.
- Acquaint minority students with a range of career opportunities in biomedical and behavioral research.
- Encourage participants to pursue careers in biomedical and behavioral research, especially as related to minority health problems.
- Provide opportunities for international collaboration in research to address health disparities from a global health perspective.
The MHIRT program covers all major expenses for participating students, including airfare, housing, living expenses, research supplies, and costs related to pre-travel planning and counseling. MHIRT staff also provide a series of training sessions on research methodology and ethical conduct in research, as well as opportunities to design projects with U.S. mentors prior to traveling. Additionally, the MHIRT program provides for sharing experiences with other trainees upon returning to the U.S. and provides supporting opportunities for students to publish their research and/or present their research findings at national conferences.
Student Eligibility Requirements
- Applicants must currently be enrolled in an accredited bachelor's degree program in a U.S. university. Priority will be given to students from Tulane University, Xavier University of Louisiana, or other universities in the New Orleans metropolitan area. Master's degree students and medical students enrolled at Tulane University are eligible to apply, but graduate students from other universities are not eligible.
- Undergraduate applicants must have completed their sophomore year prior to the time of travel.
- Minimum GPA of 3.0 or higher in all classwork to date.
- Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
- Candidates must be members of populations with recognized health disparities who are underrepresented in biomedical, behavioral, clinical, and social sciences. This includes members of racial and ethnic groups that have been identified by the National Science Foundation to be underrepresented in biomedical research (including Blacks and African Americans, Hispanic Americans or Latinos, American Indians and Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders); persons from rural areas; and low socioeconomic groups.
The majority of training opportunities are allocated for undergraduate students in their junior or senior years, but a limited number of positions are available for graduate and medical students.
Students will be ineligible if either of the following applies:
- The student is not a citizen or permanent resident of the United States.
- The student is the recipient of other federal training grant funds.