Health Policy Doctoral Fellowship Program

Download the application form here, then upload the form and your supporting documents here.

Now Accepting Applications


Priority Deadline EXTENDED: March 16, 2018



The University of New Mexico will award up to four Health Policy Doctoral Fellowships for students in the social sciences depending upon the availability of funding. The Health Policy Doctoral Fellowship is a doctoral fellowship program for Ph.D. students with educational and research interests that involve health disparities and health policy analysis and research. The University New Mexico seeks to increase the participation of the nation’s underrepresented groups (e.g., Hispanic, Native American, African American, etc.) in the development, implementation, and analysis of health policy. At the core of the University’s mission is the education of a new generation of leaders in health and health policy research, leaders whose backgrounds represent the full diversity of the U.S. population. Fellows are eligible to receive up to four years of funding support depending on funding availability, with funding including: a $5,000 scholarship awarded annually to support time required to attend fellowship training and $500.00 in travel support.  These funds are intended to compliment research assistantships provided to fellows by their academic departments.  Fellows will also have access to statistical and writing support staff, office space, and integration into a unique curriculum focused on health policy and racial equity with existing graduate fellows housed at the Center. 



Students who are United States residents or citizens accepted to begin or are currently enrolled in a PhD program in a social science department at UNM and receiving departmental funding are eligible for this award. This fellowship is open to students who are just beginning their PhD program at UNM as well as existing UNM graduate students. However, the duration of the award is dependent on the applicant’s status in their individual programs. For example, Ph.D. candidates who have completed coursework in their program at UNM are eligible for funding, but their awards will only be renewable for up to two years of total funding. All students accepting awards must be enrolled full-time in a social science department doctoral program (minimum nine graduate credit hours) each semester they are funded and remain in good academic standing with their department to be eligible for renewal.

Diversity is a core value of the University of New Mexico, and this fellowship program is committed to addressing the health care issues of Latino/Hispanic, American Indian, and other underrepresented racial and ethnic populations in the United States. As part of this commitment, we especially seek participants who are themselves members of a racial or ethnic minority group with experience in, and genuine commitment to, working with these populations to advance health equity. We believe that attracting and preparing individuals from diverse backgrounds as leaders in health policy is an important step toward eliminating health disparities. By developing social scientists from diverse ethnic, racial, gender, and economic backgrounds, our work seeks to advance health equity.


This fellowship provides a variety of opportunities for collaboration between social scientists and health professionals as well as programming that enhances scholarship and leadership skills. Several initiatives support the mission of this fellowship, including the Transdisciplinary Research, Equity and Engagement (TREE) Center for Advancing Behavioral Health, UNM-WKKF Native American Budget and Policy Institute, the Institute for Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR), Center for Education Policy Research, New Mexico Consortium for Behavioral Health Training & Research (CBHTR), and the Institute for Social Research. In addition, a unique and ongoing partnership with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the RWJF Center for Health Policy ( which applies social science perspectives to the pressing challenges of health policy, health equity, health care delivery, and improved population outcomes. 



Priority Deadline: March 16, 2018

Applicants must submit the following materials electronically to: by or before 5 pm Mountain Standard Time (MST) on March 16, 2018. Awards will be announced by April 2, 2017.

  • UNM Health Policy Doctoral Fellowship application form: 
  • Statement of purpose: Includes personal experience/background and how these experiences relate to the applicant's current interests in research or study of health disparities or health policy analysis with Hispanic/Latino, Native American, and/or other underrepresented communities in the U.S. (500 word limit). Please mention in the Ph.D. program application "letter of intent" that you wish to be considered for the UNM Health Policy Doctoral Fellowship program.
  • GRE scores: Unofficial PDF copies are acceptable; official copies required of all awardees.
  • Copies of college transcripts: Both undergraduate and graduate. Do not mail official college transcripts unless you receive an award.
  • Three academic letters of reference: Recommenders should email their letters of reference directly to: Electronic signatures are accepted.
  • One academic writing sample: Provides evidence of the applicant's potential to contribute to the mission of advancing health equity. Note that this may be different from the writing sample that is submitted with the Ph.D. Application.
  • Copy of the Ph.D. program application: From the Ph.D program to which you are applying. If applicable, also provide your letter of acceptance.
  • Current curriculum vitae (CV)

The selection committee also considers a wide range of factors when making holistic evaluations of individual applicants, including but not limited to: outstanding academic achievement, work experiences, life experiences, academic and personal motivation, commitment to high quality research that contributes to health policy debates and/or health disparities research, evidence of sustained engagement with, and genuine commitment to, the advancement of health equity in underrepresented communities, the extent to which the applicant has overcome educational and/or economic obstacles, and other indications that the applicant will excel in doctoral studies and make a significant contribution to the mission of the UNM Health Policy Doctoral Fellowship Program. All applicants receive individualized consideration.


For more information about the UNM Health Policy Doctoral Fellowship eligibility and the application process contact:

Gabriel R. Sanchez,
Executive Director, RWJF Center for Health Policy
(505) 277-0130

The University of New Mexico is a Carnegie-Research I University, and it is the only such institution that is simultaneously a federally designated Hispanic-serving and Minority-serving institution. New Mexico is a particularly relevant site for this Fellowship program, as it is a majority-minority state with one of the highest percentages of American Indians (about 11%) in the nation and the highest percentage of Latinos in the nation (about 47%). For more information visit: