Rose Traveling Fellowship Program

Rose Traveling Fellowship Program in Chronic Disease Epidemiology and Biostatistics

Spring 2014 Rose Fellows Carousel

Public health exists in a multi-national, multi-cultural world. With the speed of travel, and information networks, opportunities for cross-cultural exchange are widespread. Until now, opportunities in international health have been strongest in the areas of family planning and infectious disease, mainly in developing countries.

The goal of the Rose Traveling Fellowship is to give graduate students and postdocs in the Departments of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, from the Harvard School of Public Health, a cross-cultural experience, which could be in a developed country or a developing country.

The Rose Traveling Fellowship Program at the Harvard School of Public Health will provide critical financial support for students or post-doctoral scholars traveling abroad for internships, research work, or any other academically-related projects related to chronic disease epidemiology and/or biostatistics.

Applicants should submit a brief summary (1 page) in the form of a personal essay describing:

  •  their travel plans
  •  research strategy or internship objective
  •  the background experience and skills the applicant will bring to the project
  •  the skills or experiences the applicant hopes to acquire
  •  how the experience fits into the applicant’s overall academic and career goals

If the applicant is planning a research project, the essay should mention the research topic, hypothesis, methodology, data collection strategy in the country, and subsequent analysis planned by the applicant.

Each applicant should also submit (1) a budget and (2) a short faculty recommendation from their academic advisor or other faculty member familiar with their academic plans.

Fellowship recipients will be chosen by the chairs of the Departments of Epidemiology and Biostatistics. Candidates will be selected on the basis of academic merit, faculty recommendations, and the nature of their proposed trip. Excellence and an ability to make a difference in the world are the top criteria.

There are four $5,000 awards and three $10,000 awards available that will be given out over the course of this academic year. There will be two deadlines for the 2014-2015 academic year: November 1, 2014 and April 1, 2015. The grant is expected to cover the cost of airfare and other travel costs, provide a stipend for food and housing, and assist with any research expenses.

The award will be considered taxable income, so it is important to include taxes in the budget if you do not want to pay this out-of-pocket. Stipend payments will be made approximately two months after award decision.

Upon returning to the Harvard School of Public Health, grant recipients will be expected to provide a written summary of their experience and to be available to meet the donor when possible. In addition, the Departments of Epidemiology and Biostatistics will host an annual seminar to provide each year’s grant recipients with an opportunity to share their travel and research experiences with the larger School community.

Recent Rose Traveling Fellows and Project Descriptions:

Spring 2014 Fellows

Sarah Anoke | PhD Candidate in Biostatistics
Advisor – Marcello Pagano
Brief Project Description: To design a framework for using existing data to evaluate efforts towards NCD mortality reduction, and to propose supplementary methods outside of the routine systems that can support such an evaluation.

Monica Bertoria | Postdoc Researcher in Nutrition
Advisor – Eric Rimm
Brief Project Description: To expand the fruit and vegetable analysis described above to a separate analysis of specific polyphenols in relation to weight gain.

Alexandra Binder | Doctoral Candidate in Epidemiology
Advisor – Karin Michels
Brief Project Description: To investigate the molecular mechanisms of chronic disease in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), University of Bristol.

Hoi Cheung “Doug”Chen | Master of Science Candidate in Epidemiology
Advisor – Matthew Mimiga
Brief Project Description: Transphobic and homophobic bullying among secondary students in Thailand: a national school-based study.

Josephine Ocran | Doctoral Candidate in Epidemiology
Advisor – Alec Walker
Brief Project Description: Projects supporting new therapies development and real life evaluations and will gain exposure to different methodological approaches and data sources frequently used by the division.

Ryan Seals | Doctoral Candidate in Epidemiology
Advisor – Marc Weisskopf
Brief Project Description: To collaborate with the Danish Cancer Society to study the association between occupational risk factors and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Fall 2013 Fellows

Elizabeth Kantor | Postdoctoral Researcher in Epidemiology
Advisor – Lisa Signorello
Brief Project Title: Late-Adolescent Exposures in Relation to Colorectal Cancer and Mortality.

Shanshan Li | Postdoctoral Researcher in Epidemiology
Advisor – Walter Willett
Brief Project Description: Studying differences in diseases burden across 6 countries and transitions of modifiable lifestyle factors.
Project Proposal Example

Shelley Liu | PhD Candidate in Biostatistics
Advisor -Brent Coull
Brief Project Description: Study effects of pollutants on asthma and other respiratory diseases using spatial epidemiology methods.

Miguel Angel Luque-Fernandez | Postdoctoral Researcher in Epidemiology
Advisor – Michelle Williams
Brief Project Description: To organize medical records abstraction for time of onset of delivery and merge data into the Medical Birth Registrar.
Project Proposal Example

Student Project Reflections:

About her project, Elizabeth Kantor says, “As a recipient of the Rose Traveling Fellowship, I traveled to Örebro, Sweden to work with Katja Fall and colleagues in the Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Örbero University Hospital (pictured below). Using a linkage of population-based registries, we evaluated the role of early-life exposures (such as adolescent inflammation) in relation to colorectal cancer risk and mortality. This fellowship provided a wonderful opportunity to develop new collaborations, while also providing experience with the use of registry data in epidemiologic research”.
Elizabeth Kantor


Gautam Sajeev reflects on his involvement in this wonderful program, “My Rose Fellowship award allowed me to travel to Reykjavik, Iceland, where I worked with investigators at Hjartavernd (Icelandic Heart Association), on a thesis-related project involving an application of mediation analysis to genetic, imaging and cognitive data in the AGES-Reykjavik cohort study. During my visit, I was able to discuss my project with the investigators, formally present my work and findings, and learn firsthand about the nuances of AGES-Reykjavik data collection, which was extremely helpful. I was also able to discuss the possibility of other collaborations using the AGES-Reykjavik cohort in the future. Overall, it was a highly beneficial and enjoyable experience.
Gautam Sajeev Stands Outside the Icelandic Heart Research Center for his fellowship