Maternal Child Health Careers/Research Initiatives for Student Enhancement - Undergraduate Program (MCHC/RISE-UP)

The MCHC/RISE-UP Program provides opportunities for enhanced public health leadership training to focus on elimination of health disparities and promotion of health equity. Grant funding for this program was awarded to Kennedy Krieger Institute (KKI) by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to develop a national consortium of institutions and universities built on the Leadership Education and Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (LEND) training framework and the previous CDC-funded RISE Program grant. Consortium partners include: (1) the Kennedy Krieger Institute partnering with the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, School of Nursing, and Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Morgan State University, (2) University of South Dakota partnering with Tribal Serving Institutions, and (3) University of Southern California partnering with California State University- Los Angeles. MCHC/RISE-UP’s ultimate goal is to promote a more diversified and equal health system by introducing highly qualified undergraduate scholars (juniors and seniors with a GPA 2.5 or better on a 4.0 scale; and students who received their baccalaureate degree within 12 months of MCHC/RISE-UP program orientation), especially those from underrepresented populations, to the field of public health. All students interested in addressing health disparities are encouraged to apply.

From one of the following three MCHC/RISE-UP training sites, scholar selects the location that is closest to their permanent residence:

  1. Kennedy Krieger Institute/Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD
  2. University of South Dakota/Sanford School of Medicine Center for Disabilities in Sioux Falls, SD
  3. University of Southern California University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities/California State University, Los Angeles in CA


The MCHC/RISE-UP is a 10-week summer program that begins May 30, 2016.

Orientation Week: The program begins with Orientation for ALL scholars. Registration, health screening, and seminars will begin at KKI/Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions in Baltimore MD on Monday, May 30 and Tuesday, May 31. Scholars then fly to Atlanta, GA to continue Orientation Week at the CDC (June 1-3, 2016).

Following Orientation, the scholars at the Kennedy Krieger Institute and University of South Dakota sites will begin their MCHC/RISE-UP experience on June 3, 2016 and end on August 5, 2016. Scholars placed at the University of Southern California will return home until the University of Southern California program starts on June 15, 2016 and will end August 12, 2016.

Scholars participate in weekly seminars through distance learning.

Three public health leadership experiences are offered at each MCHC/RISE-UP site. Scholars may choose up to two (2) leadership experiences at one (1) of the above locations. Public health experiences offered to scholars are:

  1. Clinical/Community: Scholars rotate through clinical experiences provided by Maternal and Child Health disciplines (pediatrics, psychiatry, neurology, physiatrist, physical therapy, occupational therapy, nutrition, social work, psychology, speech/language, special education and nursing) (KKI only). In addition, scholars will have planned experiences in providing community-based multi-level health care and support systems for underserved groups.
  2. Community Engagement and Advocacy: Scholars work with professionals in the University Center of Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, Public Health and related systems on the formation, implementation and evaluation of health care and disability legislation, regulations and practice guidelines. The critical role of engaging underrepresented communities in shaping responsive systems of care receives a special emphasis.
  3. Research: Scholars work with research mentors on a wide range of public health prevention, treatment and epidemiological studies. Scholars receive training in conducting community-based participatory research, which engages communities that are currently underserved by mainstream systems.

Examples of Scholars' Experiences

A $3,500 stipend is provided to all program participants. Housing and round-trip travel for out-of-state scholars are also available. All program activities are contingent on CDC funding.

Application Guidelines

Applications are due and must be uploaded by January 31, 2016, 11:59 pm (EST). Applications must be completed within one two-hour session. After two hours, the application system will time out and your information will NOT be saved!




For More Information

For additional program information, please contact

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