News Release

NIH/NIMHD renews 5-Year grant to University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies

UM School of Nursing and Health Studies receives federal grant award competitive renewal to educate diverse scientific workforce

Grant and Award Announcement

University of Miami

The National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIH/NIMHD) has awarded a competitive five-year renewal grant totaling $1.35 million1 to the University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies (SONHS) to educate a new generation of health disparities scientists from different backgrounds.

The key component of the project is a training program that will select 10 promising applicants each year (2019-2023) from nursing, public health, and health science, and provide them with health disparities research training experiences at partner institutions in Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Mexico, and Peru. Each participant, ranging from undergraduate to post-doctoral levels, will be paired with a faculty mentor drawn from one of seven institutions of higher health care education in these six participating nations. The foreign mentors represent an exceptional group of educators and scientists from a wide range of fields, including medicine, nursing, public health, and psychology.

Funded under the NIMHD's Minority Health and Health Disparities Research Training (MHRT) mechanism, the ultimate goal of this initiative is to help create a culturally competent health care workforce. This is crucial because of the current shortage of Hispanic, Black, and Native American researchers in the health professions.

"We are excited to build on the success our students have demonstrated in the previous five years, through the initial NIH/NIMHD global research program we administered," explains Dr. Johis Ortega, associate dean for Hemispheric and Global Initiatives and the study's Principal Investigator. "We will continue to prepare individuals from diverse backgrounds to conduct health disparities research throughout the hemisphere through hands-on opportunities with internationally renowned researchers focused on improving minority health and reducing disparities. We look forward to opening the eyes of tomorrow's most promising health disparities scientists to new cultures, populations, and career possibilities."

"We are proud that the NIH/NIMHD has again recognized our contributions to developing the scientists whose work will decrease and ultimately eliminate health disparities," says Dean Cindy L. Munro. "Their renewed support will enable us to advance and guide future researchers from diverse backgrounds, disciplines, and education levels along the education and research pipeline. Well-trained minority health investigators from health disparity populations are in a position to make a unique impact on the science of eliminating health disparities."

In addition to 10 weeks abroad, MHRT trainees will participate in a two-week Intensive Global Health Disparities Summer Research Institute, a one-week seminar on research dissemination and preparing for a career in HD research, and a writing workshop. They will be expected to continue working with their mentors after the program on scientific presentations and publications and on applying for graduate school and/or other health disparities research career opportunities.



Established in 1948 as South Florida's first collegiate nursing program, the University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies transforms lives and health care through education, research, innovation, and service across the hemisphere. For more information, please visit the school website at

This grant is supported by the National Institute On Minority Health And Health Disparities of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number T37MD008647. The content of this article is solely the responsibility of the issuing institution and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health

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