Frequently Asked Questions
- I am not an ethnic minority, am I still eligible to apply?
Yes! Minority does not just refer to ethnicity, it also encompasses any individual from a disparate situation (socioeconomic, health, or first generation to receive higher education). Non-minority applicants who demonstrate a strong commitment to serving health concerns of disparate populations will also be considered.
- Am I required to take a language test before applying?
No. For work in Brazil, an intensive three month language course will be available to students without prior structured course work. Language competency is self assessed on your application and may be orally confirmed prior to project assignments. For work in Uganda and Thailand, translators are utilized.
- How important is the Statement of Purpose?
The Statement of Purpose is a critical part of the application. This is your opportunity to present your reasons for wanting to participate in an international opportunity. Reviewers will be studying your application for evidence that you are capable, flexible and that your decision to travel to an international research site is purposeful, goal oriented and in keeping with the mission of the program. The primary mission of this program is to provide minority students and other underrepresented groups in Science with an opportunity to undertake international research that has the potential to make a real difference in the health care of under served populations in the U.S. and developing countries.
- I have never traveled or studied abroad before, should I apply?
Yes. In fact, the MID-SOUTH COALITION FOR MINORITY INTERNATIONAL RESEARCH encourages you to apply. One of the primary objectives of the program is to provide qualified minority students with the opportunity to further their career goals by participating in international opportunities.
- Am I eligible to apply if my school is not a member of the MID-SOUTH COALITION FOR MINORITY INTERNATIONAL RESEARCH?
Yes. We realize that many qualified students attend other institutions. While preference is given to students from participating schools within the Mid-South, we frequently accept students from across the country.
- I am not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, can I still apply?
No. MHIRT participants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Permanent residents must be able to show proof of residency.
U.S. citizens must have or be able to obtain a U.S. passport.
- Are all my costs related to this opportunity covered?
Yes, the cost of visa, passport, airfare, food and housing while you are away and a small per diem for on-site expenses will be covered.
- What type of stipend will I receive?
Stipends range from $1000 to $1400 per month based on academic standing.
- What if I don't have at least a 3.0 GPA?
Students with a GPA of less than 3.0 may be considered if a letter of reference from a faculty member of their home institution indicates evidence of exceptional scientific interest and talent.
When and how will I be notified of my application and acceptance status?
- What is the first thing I will need to do if my application is accepted?
You will be sent an acceptance packet that will include steps to follow. First, you will have to acknowledge your acceptance. Next, you will need to complete the forms needed to acquire a passport and visa (if needed). You will also receive the schedule for a mandatory orientation that you will attend prior to leaving the country. All the questions you may still have regarding what to take with you, travel and living arrangements, and cultural and training issues for the specific site you will visit will be answered at that orientation.
- How are Portuguese lessons arranged for students selected to go to Brazil?
For students selected to go to Brazil that are located in Memphis, we hold private language lessons at CBU twice a week. Students that are located outside the Memphis area are expected do an independent study of Portuguese in order to acquire basic proficiency; however, we offer several options to assist with this based on individual needs.
- Didn't the program used to have sites in Thailand and Pantanal?
While we have had programs in Thailand and Pantanal in the past, we do not currently have research programs running in that area. It is our hope to add additional projects each year and we are currently seeking another vet/public health research project. At this time, however, Thailand and Pantanal are not current research sites for us.
All students with complete applications will be notified of their acceptance status via email or post by the end of February. If your application is incomplete, you will not be notified. If you would like to check on the completion status of your application, please email firstname.lastname@example.org before December 2011.