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Programs in Research

Global Health Medical Student Research Fellowship

This fellowship offers up to two medical students a year funding and support to dedicate one year to global health research.

Fellowship Overview

The Global Health Medical Student Research Fellowship is a joint effort by The Center for Innovation in Global Health (CIGH) and the Stanford Medical Scholars Research Program (MedScholars). In response to increasing interest in global health among incoming and current medical students, this fellowship provides an opportunity for medical students with a genuine interest in global health to gain foundational experience in global health research. This fellowship will offer up to two medical students a year funding and support to dedicate one year to global health research. It will include an on-campus element as well as an extended period of time at a global field site conducting research.

Candidates will apply with a project idea and a faculty mentor, and if accepted, will work with Dr. Michele Barry, Senior Associate Dean for Global Health and Director of the Stanford Center for Innovation in Global Health, and Dr. Steve Luby, Associate Dean for Global Health and Director of Research at CIGH, during their fellowship for additional guidance.

Who is eligible?

  • Stanford medical students who have completed MS1 and are eligible to apply for at least 3 full time research quarters of MedScholars
  • Based on the requirement to complete 4 quarters of this fellowship, including 3 full-time research quarters, this program is most suitable for students between MS2 and MS3.We understand that students later in their career may not be able to spend the summer doing research; in that case we recommend they take the Step 2 exam prior to the start of the research quarters.
  • Demonstrated interest in global health
  • Prior research experience preferred but not required
  • Prior international work or educational experience preferred

Application Process

Applications for 2025-26 will open in October with a January, 2025 deadline.

  • Students must submit applications for both the Global Health Medical Student Research Fellowship and MedScholars.
  • Applications should consist of a resume/CV and essay (no more than one page) describing your interest in conducting international research as a medical student, and an essay about a time you demonstrated flexibility in the face of an unexpected professional or educational setback. You will also be asked about your prior research and international education experience and for a description of the research project, including a note about the faculty mentor you’ve identified for the project. See Faculty Mentors and Research Sites section below for information about identifying a mentor and site. The application must be accompanied by a letter of support from the faculty mentor for the project, and a second letter of reference from a Stanford faculty member. The letters must be uploaded to the application form directly by the faculty.
  • Applications will be reviewed, and potential candidates will be interviewed. Final decisions will be communicated in February.
  • Since every student’s situation is different, we recommend that you meet with Financial Aid, the Registrar, and your advising dean prior to applying to discuss how this fellowship would fit with their schedule and financial situation.

Additional application to Med Scholars required
If you are selected for the Global Health Medical Student Research Fellowship, MedScholars applications must be submitted by the July deadline. For additional information regarding the MedScholars application, please visit:

Faculty Mentors and Research Projects

Students must identify a faculty mentor and a research project prior to applying for the fellowship.

  • Ideally, students already have a pre-existing relationship with a professor who is conducting global health research. If you already have a faculty mentor, discuss this opportunity with them.
  • If you are not already connected to a faculty member who is engaged in global health work, you can start your search by visiting the Stanford Global Health Research & Activity Map. Search by region or clinical/academic focus area.
    Once you find a potential mentor, you can email them directly or contact Yosefa at CIGH to request an introduction.
  • If you are reaching out to a faculty you do not already have a relationship with, include your CV and your interests and how they align with theirs and include a link to this webpage with information about the Global Health Medical Student Research Fellowship.
  • Research activities depend on your interests and the time constraint of three quarters.

Sites where Fellows propose to conduct research must be pre-approved by the Director of Research for CIGH, Dr. Steve Luby, and the Senior Associate Dean for Global Health, Dr. Michele Barry during the application process. All research protocols will need to obtain IRB approval by Stanford.


The fellowship spans one year (4 quarters) as follows:

  • Summer Quarter: Fellows are in clerkships during this term. Fellows must submit MedScholars application by the July deadline. The Fellowship is contingent upon the MedScholars application being accepted.
  • Autumn Quarter: Fellowship begins. Fellows will spend this quarter on campus preparing for their global field research. Fellows will enroll in classes related to epidemiology and global health research and they will set up the research project and engage with the faculty mentor and Dr. Luby and Dr. Barry.
  • Winter, Spring, and Summer Quarters: Fellows must spend up to three full-time quarters implementing their global health project, with a majority of their time spent pursuing research abroad.

Completion Requirements

Submit a report:

  • Use manuscript format (hypothesis, methods, results, citations) with an emphasis on results
  • If the research has not been fully completed and a full manuscript is not possible, then a progress report is acceptable as long as the advisor confirms that substantial work has been completed
  • If the work is being published, a paper can be submitted in place of the report as long as the student made significant contributions to the paper

Give an oral presentation of the results of the project: Submit an abstract to present research findings at the Stanford Global Health Research Convening or the Stanford Medical Student Research Symposium, or at a regional, national, or an international academic conference

Submit an evaluation of the experience

The report and oral presentation information must be provided to the MedScholars program within 6 months after the end of the fellowship, along with a mentor letter of summary.



If approved for the year-long fellowship, students will receive a stipend in the autumn and MedScholars support winter, spring, and summer quarter of the fellowship year. The stipend rate is determined during the summer for the next academic year. For reference, the stipend rate for 2024-25 is $11,500. Be sure to meet with the Financial Aid Office to determine your financial situation and have a plan for covering tuition autumn quarter. Please note, students who have not reach the 12 quarters of the full tuition Residency Requirement will be charged full tuition in autumn quarter of this fellowship.

Travel-related expenses (up to $3,000) and research expenses (up to $5,000) will be covered by the fellowship program.



Questions about the fellowship can be directed to Yosefa Gilon, Associate Director for Global Health Education, at