Please note that the responses have been developed by a number of Downs Fellowship Committee members to provide general guidance on the Downs Fellowship and may not be directly applicable to your particular application. The information here does not represent official policies of the Committee and will be amended as necessary. All applications will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
Please see the Downs home page for current important dates.
Proposal Writing Workshops:
Each Fall there are 5-6 proposal writing workshops that are sponsored by the Downs Committee. They are intended to provide students with a basic understanding of epidemiologic, biostatistics, qualitative research, and ethical principles that will enable them to write, organize, and perform a research study abroad. Although this workshop is not mandatory for applicants, attendance will be taken and considered by the Down’s Committee. In addition, only students who attend 50% or greater of the workshops will be eligible for help from the instructor on their research proposals.
All applicants who submit their research proposals by the deadline will be matched with two Downs Committee to serve as a mentor. The applicant will be notified of the committee members they were matched with and must take the initiative to contact and schedule an appointment as soon as possible with their mentor. The Downs Committee member does not serve as or replace faculty advisors. ONLY applications received by the deadline will be considered for mentor matching. It is recommended to take advantage of this opportunity as the final application process is highly competitive. These proposals must be emailed to Anjuli Bodyk by the strict deadline.
All final applications must be submitted on the Student Grant & Fellowship Database by the deadline. Only final applications submitted through this database will be considered. Interviews will then be scheduled and decisions announced in March.
This can happen in a variety of ways. For example:
- You have a particular geographic region to which you want to travel. With this information in mind, you look for faculty members who are doing work in this area and find out if there are opportunities for you to work with them.
- You have a particular area of interest (i.e. maternal and child health, nutrition, health and conflict, etc.). With this in mind, you search for faculty members who are doing work on this topic or have similar interests to discuss if you can work with them or if they can connect you with others in the same field.
- You know that you want to conduct a particular type of research (i.e. qualitative, a specific kind of study). You then search for faculty members who have expertise in this type of methodology to discuss ideas for summer research projects.
- Some past fellows have also contacted organizations directly that do work that interests them.
- Finally, please do not underestimate the resourcefulness of your peers in helping you find a project. Talk to your classmates and to past Downs Fellows for ideas of projects, organizations and faculty members to meet.
The final application should be accompanied with two letters of support; one from the Yale Faculty adviser and the other from the host country sponsor.
Ideally, the sponsor letter should include:
- Statement that they and their institution / agency agree to be a collaborator
- Length of your project
- Your main responsibilities
- Relevance of your research and its significance to their ongoing work
- Any relevant local resources (equipment, library, etc.) for your project