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CFAAR Scholars

The CFAAR Scholars Program is a 6-week paid internship opportunity that affords undergraduate, graduate, and medical students an opportunity to strengthen their skills in epidemiological, clinical, and community-based research topics. Students will receive hands-on research experience including but not limited to: conducting literature reviews, interpreting data, and developing public speaking skills. Students will attend weekly didactic sessions and journal clubs to learn from and be in conversation with CFAAR faculty, staff, and research collaborators.  

The CFAAR Scholars Program aims to provide a supportive environment to critically engage in conversations about the systemic, underlying causes of historic and contemporary public health injustices while simultaneously exploring how to create policies, practices, and culture that supports and sustains health. Students will leave the program with a holistic definition of health to guide them as they move through their educational and career journeys as students, advocates, clinicians, and researchers.   

CFAAR Scholars Program Goals are for students to: 

  • Learn how to critically engage in research discussions and become vital members of the scientific community 
  • Develop a scientific literature review 
  • Translate complex data into a ‘research story’   
  • Design a presentation to communicate science to a professional audience  
  • Reflect on their motivations, role, and responsibilities as future health professionals  

CFAAR Summer Scholars Program Overview (June 20th - July 29th 

  • Module 1 (June 20th - June 24th):  
    • Introduction to Research, Medicine, and Public Health 
  • Module 2 (June 27th - July 1st):  
    • Research Recipe: Abstracts & Introduction to Literature Reviews 
  • Module 3 (July 5th - July 8th):  
    • Scientific Inquiry & Methods  
  • Module 4 (July 11th - July 15th):  
    • Rethinking Implicit Bias: From Biology to Society 
    • Research Heuristic: Problem, Gap, Hook  
  • Module 5 (July 18th - July 22nd):  
    • Data Visualization  
  • Module 6 (July 25th - July 29th) 
    • Integration of Knowledge & Practice (Final Presentations)  

Qualifications 

Prospective interns must have the following qualifications: 

  • Currently enrolled in an undergraduate/graduate program (and minimally completed the first year of an undergraduate program) 
  • Enthusiasm for research and intellectual curiosity 
  • Ability to connect with our team via zoom and participate fully in online programming (e.g. lunch and learns, journal club, lectures)
  • Ability to participate in a hybrid schedule 
  • Ability to participate fully for all 6 weeks of the program  

Preferred but not required: 

  • Experience with social media design or content curation 
  • Website, graphic design, or video editing skills 
  • Experience recruiting participants for a study 
  • Experience with data analysis and/or biostatistical coursework 
  • Familiarity with Excel 
  • Scientific writing skills 

Application Process 

Applications for the 2022 cohort have closed. 

If you have any questions about the Scholars program, please email CFAARScholars@northwestern.edu. 

Accounts from 2021 Scholars

I absolutely loved my experience working with CFAAR. I felt like I was challenged and inspired throughout the entirety of the program."

– Isabelle Stewart 2021

For years, I have been interested in studying biology and medical research. As a high school student, however, I didn't have much experience in the real world outside of my classes. I knew that I liked the subject, but I had no idea how those fields could be applied. With the introduction to medical and public health research from this internship, I realized that I do indeed really enjoy this type of research...I found it inspiring how everyone at CFAAR always kept the community in mind, and worked not only on the research but also on the policy and informative practices that would result."

– Elizabeth Grieve 2021

The program leadership team played a major role in making this summer internship experience one of the best I have had (even with it being virtual)! Ashley, Isabel, Haley, and Elizabeth are incredibly kind and enthusiastic leaders. In every meeting, I could feel their passion for CFAAR and public health, and that is what made this internship so special and meaningful - being able to work with a leadership team who genuinely cares and supports their students' endeavors and experiences while exploring the field."

– Joanne Lee 2021

I thought the whole structure of the internship was great. I liked how there were sessions with the whole group and sessions to work on projects. I was so happy with how involved I was able to be in the projects I worked on. It was beyond my expectations for a summer internship and I feel I have learned so much this summer. I'm really thankful that I was able to be part of CFAAR this summer!"

– Rachel Assaf 2021

My experience with CFAAR has guided my decision to pursue a DMD/MPH. I had never previously considered pursuing an MPH prior to the internship, but my experiences and interactions at CFAAR have showed me the importance, even responsibility, health care professionals have to improve community health."

– Anonymous 2021

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