Public Health Research Academy

Our communities need more Native public health professionals working to improve tribal health.

Our year-long Research Academy will introduce high school students to relatable public health topics and will conclude with a youth-driven community health project. The program includes an in-person kick-off week (in Portland, OR) and virtual learning sessions with role model guest speakers.

Application for the 2024-2025 year is now closed. Please join us next year. 

2024-25 Academy Timeline

Program Dates:
June 2024-May 2025

In-Person & Virtual

Apply By:
May 1, 2024

What's Involved?

Who is eligible?

Program Details

  • Site mentors/supervisor/parents will ideally host 2-4 students per site.
  • Students and mentors will participate in a week-long orientation with hands-on activities, campus tours, and field trips in Portland, OR.
  • Students will attend virtual learning sessions on Zoom (Time TBD) during the 2024-2025 school year.
  • Students  who complete all program activities will receive a certificate of completion!


The program is designed for American Indian/Alaska Native youth (preferably juniors and seniors in high school). High schools, Tribal health and wellness programs, Indian Health Boards, or other programs serving AI/AN youth can serve as host sites. Site mentors are encouraged to recruit 2-4 local students who will work together on their community health project.

Public Health Research Academy for Native high school students. June 24-28, 2024. Portland, Oregon.

Financial Support

Host Sites

Selected site/mentors will receive $5,000 to cover the time and effort of mentors, and any other expenses associated with the project. Host sites will be paid $2,500 after the week-long orientation and $2,500 after their community health research project (April/May).



Students will receive $2,000 to cover their learning and research-related expenses participating in the Academy. Students will be paid $1,000 after the week-long orientation, and $1,000 after presenting their community health research project (April/May).

NW NARCH will cover the costs of travel to Portland, OR for the Kick-off Orientation.

Interested in Hosting Research Academy Students?

  • You will be asked to complete a Site Application Form and share information about your location and student(s). 2024 Site Application Forms are not yet available.
  • Once participating sites have been selected, the adult Mentor/Chaperones will also fill out a student enrollment form (that confirms parent permission to travel/participate).
  • Priority will be given to sites in Oregon, Washington, and Idaho who have 2-4 AI/AN high school juniors and seniors interested in participating. We will consider applications with fewer students and with younger students. We encourage you to apply!

Application for the 2024-2025 year is now closed. 

For more information contact, Grazia Cunningham –


Connect with Grazia Cunningham at  or fill out the form below.

Sponsored by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number S06GM145214

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