MHDI Undergraduate Research Program


About the Program

The MHDI Undergraduate Research Program (MHDI URP) is an interdisciplinary program that offers advanced research training in health disparities research. The goal of the program is to increase the number of underrepresented students who pursue graduate degrees and research careers in health disparities research and social and behavioral sciences, more generally. The MHDI URP helps prepare undergraduates for graduate study through intensive research experiences with MHDI faculty mentors and enriching professional development activities. Now in its 8th year, MHDI URP celebrates the achievements of its alumni. To date, over 50 students have participated in our program, are now completing their Masters and Ph.D. degrees, and preparing the next generation of minority health scholars as mentors and teachers.

Program Overview

Participating students work up to 10 hours per week with MHDI Core Faculty mentors and their research teams on existing projects to plan and execute an independent project. Students develop knowledge and skills in all phases of research, including hypothesis development, research design, data analysis, and scientific writing. Faculty guide students through the process of formulating a research hypothesis, analyzing, and summarizing the findings. At the end of the program, students present their research at the UNL Spring Research Fair and potentially at regional or national conferences in their related fields. View our current projects here.

Program Timeline

The MHDI URP begins in January, 2021 and is completed in April, 2022. In addition to completing their own research project from start to finish, MHDI URP students have the opportunity to attend research workshops, learn about the graduate school admission process, applying for fellowships, and hear from other graduate students attending UNL.

How to Apply

Students can begin exploring research opportunities to prepare for the application process by visiting our website to learn more about participating faculty mentors and their research projects. Once you have identified a project and mentor, you will begin gathering your application materials. All of the application materials can be submitted on our website by clicking the button below.



Application Materials

Short answer questions - Each essay answer must be less than 2000 characters.

  • Tell us about your motivation to pursue health disparities research and how this research fits into your career goals;
  • Please discuss the areas of research that interest you;
  • Decribe any prior research experience, including classes, lab, or field experience, including the dates of participation and the name of each program, institution/organization, and research mentor. Include a brief description of each research project and whether you prepared a poster, oral presentation, paper, etc).


  • One letter of recommendation is required. Your reference letter should be written by someone who can evaluate your potential for research. Your recommender will receive details on where to send the recommendation.


  • Please attach a CV or Resume electronically to your application using the document upload option in the online application system.


  • Please attach a transcript (unofficial is acceptable) or copy of your current course work with grades to your application using the document download option in the application.

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