Application for 2020 will be available in Fall 2019

For an application, click here...

Program Description

The Colleges of Arts & Sciences, Business & Economics, and Engineering and Applied Sciences have grant funds available to sophomore and junior undergraduate students to support experiential learning activities in health (preferably off campus).  Students who meet the qualifications and whose proposals are accepted by the committee may be awarded a fellowship of up to $5000.  An experiential learning activity is an independent, hands-on research or real world experience that advances the student’s understanding of health or health care.  For example, a student might shadow a physician in a hospital, work in a health insurance company, take on a research project at the Lourdes Center for Public Health, volunteer for a NGO with a health mission, conduct oral histories of cancer patients, enter the genetic engineering competition, or conduct health-related research in a laboratory.  Identification and justification of the funded activity is up to the student; the principal requirement is that the proposed activity be related to health.  Health is broadly defined, stretching from research or work experiences in the natural sciences (e.g., bioengineering; biological research), the social sciences (e.g., history of medicine; health policy; hospital finances and management), to the humanities (e.g., bioethics; narrative; art).  The intent of this program is to give students an opportunity to develop and experience a unique learning activity that will broaden and deepen their knowledge of some aspect of health or health care.  This experience must take place between mid-May and mid-August, 2019.  No late proposals or winter break experience will be considered.

Lehigh University Grants for Experiental Learning in Health - Woman in scienceEligibility
Lehigh University undergraduates in good standing and full-time status at time of application
Sophomore standing minimum 23 college credits (true freshman are not eligible to apply) 
 Minimum 2.0 GPA at the time of application  
Must be returning in the fall of following year as a full-time student (can be a presidential scholar)
Will complete the proposed research and presentation prior to graduation 
Students may not receive academic credit for the research conducted with GELH grant monies
Students who have received the GELH previously are not eligible
Students may apply for an individual award or a group award at a maximum $5000 per individual.  A group consists of two or more students all of whom meet eligibility requirements.  Grant fund fellowships will be disbursed as a stipend, expense reimbursement or a combination of the two. A stipend is a twice monthly paycheck intended to cover cost of living such as housing and food. As a guide, a student using the grant for stipend support should budget $10 an hour.  The funds may also be used for the following.
To purchase specialized books unobtainable through the library system
To gain access to off-campus research materials or facilities
To purchase lab supplies, and to fund data gathering and analysis
To support travel necessary to perform research, collect scholarly data or perform other scholarly activities (field trips, visits to off-campus libraries, etc.) 
To support travel to present a paper, attend a conference, participate in symposia, or attend a professional meeting.  Any software or computer purchase become Lehigh’s property at the research conclusion
Clothing, shoes and the like are non-reimbursable expenses
Please note at any time during your research, if you are being paid by a Lehigh University source other than through the GELH grant, you are required to seek approval from Amanda Webb, amw313@lehigh.edu.
For expense reimbursements, students must comply with Lehigh University’s travel and business expenses reimbursement policies and procedures found on the Controller’s webpage: https://financeadmin.lehigh.edu/content/travel-business-expense-policy-and-procedures
Proposals requesting more than $5000 will not be accepted. Any unused funds provided by the grant must be returned to Lehigh University.  Please email Amanda Webb at amw313@lehigh.edu for instructions.  Students are to advise committee via the online application tool of any other grants they plan to pursue, and/or have accepted and the funding source and dollar amount of each.  If notification of a grant award takes place after the application is submitted, the student is responsible to notify in writing, Amanda Webb at amw313@lehigh.edu of the award amount and funding source(s). 

Research Compliance
As with all research conducted at Lehigh, conduct of research must adhere to University policies, including those pertaining to human subjects, vertebrate animals and hazardous materials.  Faculty mentors, as part of the normal pedagogical relationship, will provide guidance on university and professional standards, regulations and policies. If your research involves any of the aforementioned groups, you may be required to obtain Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval. For additional information, please see research policies located on the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP) website https://research.cc.lehigh.edu/research-integrityPlease note this process may take up to 2 months to complete.

Undergraduate Research Involving International Travel
Students seeking funds to travel to other countries will need to submit an ITAC review  form to the International Travel Advisory Committee (ITAC); students are encouraged to submit their ITAC review form to ITAC simultaneously with their GELH applications, even if the ITAC review form must be updated later with some specific information. Some travel requires provost approval. Conduct violations may prohibit a student from traveling on a Lehigh-sanctioned grant or program, and traveling with a Lehigh student who has conduct violations may result in a group trip’s denial of endorsement by the provost.

ITAC will likely only approve international travel if the student is on a Lehigh-sanctioned trip involving an agent of the university (faculty or staff member), or if the in-country partner organization is considered to be a strong partner organization by ITAC. It is recommended, but not required, to piggyback on programs Lehigh is already participating in order to be in close proximity to Lehigh faculty/staff.  Both GELH and ITAC consider the background, experience and staffing of students in-country partner organizations (e.g., Engineers Without Borders) when they evaluate travel proposals. Nonprofit organizations vary widely in experience, expertise, resources and training.  There are many characteristics of a strong partner organization, but they typically have the following:

1.      Staff members of the organization are on-site where the student(s) will be located at all times;
2.      Clearly defined policies and notifications for students, parents, and universities (typically available on a web site or by emailing the organization’s contact person);
3.      Considerable experience working with students at the site or country of the travel;
4.      Appropriate insurance.

Students should include information about their intended partner organization with their GELH application, as well as with their ITAC proposal. If proposing partnering with a new organization, students must properly vet the organization and include this information in their GELH application and ITAC proposal. ITAC review for travel that involves travel in remote locations, partnering with new organizations, and/or travel without an agent of the University will require full review rather than expedited review, and such projects may never be approved by ITAC. Students are encouraged to work with sites and partner organization that Lehigh University already has established ties or programs with.

Any Lehigh student traveling abroad is required to pay a $50 fee administered by Office of International Affairs, International Programs and Study Abroad for 6 weeks or less and $100 for travel lasting more than 6 weeks. This registration enrolls you in the Lehigh University Student International Services and Insurance Program: http://www.lehigh.edu/~incis/documents/ServiceandInsuranceProgram.pdf.  

Students can consult with International SOS regarding questions about safety, security, immunizations and other health related at https://www.internationalsos.com/MasterPortal/default.aspx?membnum=11BYSG000004&AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

The Mentor
The mentor is someone who is associated with where your research will be conducted.  The mentor is responsible for reviewing your proposal, deliverable and keeping your budget on track.  The mentor is also responsible for assisting with research related questions and the IRB/travel process if applicable.  Mentors cannot be paid stipend or be reimbursed for travel expenses.

The Lehigh Mentor
You must ask a Lehigh faculty member to review your proposal.  If your work is being done under a Lehigh faculty member, this is your Mentor who will also monitor your progress and review your deliverable.  Your Lehigh Mentor must provide a letter of recommendation.  You must provide a second letter of recommendation.  If you also have an External Mentor, your second letter of recommendation will come from them.  Otherwise it should come from your major advisor or another Lehigh professor that you have a good relationship with.  Please have the letters of recommendation submitted to Amanda Webb at amw313@lehigh.edu

The External Mentor
Research taking place outside Lehigh will also require an external mentor who is responsible for reviewing your proposal, monitoring your progress and reviewing your deliverable.  Your external mentor must provide a letter of recommendation and a CV to the GELH Committee via email to Amanda Webb, amw313@lehigh.edu.

During the timeframe of the experiential learning activity, the Office of Interdisciplinary Programs may request a progress update to include research status, including any current issues and confirmation of work hours.

To Apply
Applications will be accepted for 2020 in Fall 2019
An online application is available (see above).

If applying as a group, each applicant must submit an individual application.  All submissions must include:

  1. A four- to five-sentence abstract that gives a clear and concise description of the activity’s objectives, proposed methodology and anticipated results in layman’s terms.
  2. A description of the proposed activity in less than two pages.
  3. Total amount of funding requested and description of budget.  Include information on funding from other sources that will be used to support this research.
  4. A research start and end date.  All research is to be completed between mid-May and mid- August. No experiences taking place over winter break will be accepted.
  5. Mentor(s) name(s), contact information and location of where the activity will take place, and information about the intended partner organization (if applicable).
  6. Mentor support documentation.
    ·  Lehigh Major Advisor Mentor - Submits Major Advisor Evaluation form and a letter of recommendation via email to Amanda Webb, amw313@lehigh.edu
    ·  Lehigh Non-Major Mentor - Submits letter of recommendation and your major advisor must submit Major Advisor Evaluation form via email to Amanda Webb, amw313@lehigh.edu

    ·  External Mentor - Submits letter of recommendation, CV and contact information to the GELH Committee via email to Amanda Webb, amw313@lehigh.edu

Evaluation Criteria
The principle criterion will be the potential of the proposed experiential learning activity to broaden and deepen the student’s knowledge of some aspect of health or of healthcare systems.  Clarity of the proposal and reasonableness of the proposed budget will be considered.  A cross-college faculty committee and representatives from Study Abroad and the International Review Board (IRB) will meet within one month after the deadline for submission to review applications.  Based on the recommendation of the review panel, the selected awardees will be notified immediately afterwards by the Office of Interdisciplinary Programs. Grant recipients will receive an award letter outlining the terms and conditions of the grant fellowship that must be signed and returned

Expenditures and Grant Management
Students who receive awards will be required to attend a meeting with the Interdisciplinary Programs staff who will outline the rules and requirements for the stipend and expense reimbursements.  It is the responsibility of the awardee and the mentor to assure that the funds are spent in accordance with the proposed budget and objectives.  Funds remaining at the end of the award period will revert to the grant program.  All funds must be spent by the end of the summer and all reimbursement must be complete by September 15th.  Examples of reimbursable items are travel and supplies. You may use these funds to purchase computers and software.  However those items become the property of Lehigh once the experience is complete.  Personal items, vaccines and immunizations are not reimbursed.  Housing is covered for international travel.  For US based experiences, a stipend would be used to cover living expenses.
Progress Updates and Deliverable Presentations
All grant recipients are required to provide a total of three deliverables:
  1. A brief mid-research project update with photographs/video if available. This update should be no more than 2-3 paragraphs.
  2. A final reflection and a brief report with expense summary and photographs/videos if available.
  3. Participation in a symposium with and presentation of deliverable - a symposium will be held during the fall semester and students will be asked to present their project to the committee, faculty, staff, mentors and fellow students. Students are expected to attend the symposium for the duration.  If the student is unable to attend the GELH fall symposium, it is the student’s responsibility to find a symposium in which to present and to notify Amanda Webb, amw313@lehigh.edu, of date, time and location.  The faculty mentor must sign off on your deliverable and symposium you presented at. Please be advised that Lehigh reserves the right to use student proposals, photographs and deliverables on their websites for promotional materials as well as guidelines for future grant recipients.
Contact Information
Questions and requests for additional information should be directed to Amanda Webb, Office of Interdisciplinary Programs, College of Arts and Sciences, 31 Williams Hall, Room 101; phone 610-758-4745; e-mail amw313@lehigh.edu

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Grants for Experiential Learning in Health  |101 Williams Hall | 31 Williams Drive | Bethlehem, PA 18015 | phone 610-758-3996 | fax 610-758-2131