Training and mentoring future researchers in policy-making and fieldwork is one of the key mandates of the Institute for Health and Social Policy. In order to meet these goals, four separate programs provide students with the opportunity to engage in a multidisciplinary institute and address issues of health and inequality, the social determinants of health and well-being through a variety of projects and activities. From 2006-2015, the IHSP has trained and mentored 290 students from over 50 departments through these 4 different student programs.
The Internship Program, run twice per year, provides a unique opportunity within the McGill community for students from across disciplines to be involved in research projects currently in progress at the IHSP. Open to both graduate and undergraduate students, the IHSP internship program is comprised of work experience at a research institute, training in research and policy, and workshops on personal and professional development within the health and social policy arena. Since it began in 2006, 169 interns have benefited from this program.
The Graduate Award Program, implemented in 2013, seeks to provide graduate students with the skills needed to bridge the gap between research and practice. It is designed to facilitate graduate work in the areas of health and social policy through a series of seminars, including workshops, training sessions, and opportunities to present findings. Central to the program is fostering a sense of community among a cohort of graduate students in an interdisciplinary setting through regular meetings and the provision of workspace. Working with mentors at the IHSP, students are encouraged to bring policy relevance to their existing research. Nineteen graduate students have been supported through this program.
The McBurney Fellowship Program supports students in international service programs related to health and social policy in Latin America. McBurney Fellows serve abroad in organizations working to meet the basic needs of local populations. One key aspect of this fellowship is its mandate to make a significant contribution to improving the health and social conditions of poor and marginalized populations through the delivery of concrete and measurable interventions. Currently in its fifth year, the McBurney Fellowship has funded over 40 students.
The Language and Health Program is student research program focusing on the relationship between language and access to health or social services. In collaboration with the Training and Retention of Health Professionals Project (TRHP) the Language and Health care Research Program: Facilitating Access to Health Care for English-Speaking Minorities in Quebec brings together graduate students interested in the intersection of health and language in Quebec. Started in 2014, 8 students have taken part in the program to date.