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National Center on Minority Health and Health Dispartities

The USC/Claflin University Center of Excellence is committed to contributing to the reduction of health disparities in South Carolina and the United States by developing underrepresented minority researchers who can address the diagnosis, reduction, and elimination of HIV/AIDS and HPV/cervical cancer in rural African-American or Latino populations. Through its Integrated Research, Education, and Training Core (IRET Core), EXPORT will implement strategies designed to:
  • Recruit and develop underrepresented minority students entering careers in public health and health disparities research
  • Increase the capacity for public health and health disparities research at both the University of South Carolina and Claflin University
  • Provide mentored training that will increase the number of minorities conducting biomedical and behavioral research, with specific emphasis on increasing the number of faculty and students with graduate level training in public health and health disparities research
  • Provide paid summer internship opportunities for undergraduate students
  • Identify and facilitate interdisciplinary collaboration focused on health disparities research
  • Provide training on issues related to developing cultural competence
In order to achieve Center and Core goals, the RET Core will provide research internships each year to undergraduate students at the University of South Carolina and Claflin University who have demonstrated an interest in and commitment to pursuing a career in health disparities research, focused specifically on HIV/AIDS and HPV/cervical cancer.

Minimum Selection Criteria for the Center of Excellence Undergraduate Research Internships located at the University of South Carolina
  • The applicant must be a United States citizen. Priority will be given to qualified applicants from the state of South Carolina.
  • The applicant must be a member of a population that is underrepresented in the field of public health, health disparities research, biomedical and behavioral research.
  • The applicant must be enrolled full-time in an undergraduate program at the University of South Carolina.
  • The applicant must be at least a rising junior with a minimum grade point average of 3.0.
  • The applicant must be recommended by their academic advisor, a faculty member, or current or past employer. Recommendations must be submitted in writing.
  • The applicant must submit an official academic transcript with the application and essay. Official transcripts must be submitted in a sealed envelope from the USC Registrarís Office.
  • The applicant must submit a 500-700 word essay on one of the following topics:
    • In your own words, define public health. Then share how you would assist with improving and protecting the health of communities or specific populations from HIV/AIDS, HPV/cervical cancer through research.
    • Briefly describe your career goals and your personal reasons for choosing a career in public health and health disparities research.
    • How will this undergraduate research internship help you achieve your career goals?
    • As a future health science/health disparities researcher, what do you think should be done to move research from the laboratory setting to problem solving in the community?
  • The 2009 internship program will begin on June 2, 2009 and end on July 24, 2009.
  • The application deadline is January 30,2009.
  • Submit application package to:
    Gwen Preston
    Institute for Partnerships to Eliminate Health Disparities
    220 Stoneridge Drive, Suite 208
    Columbia, SC  29210
  • The applicant will be interviewed by representatives from the EXPORT Undergraduate Research Selection Committee.

=> Click Here to Download the Application