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Research and Scholarly Advancement Fellowship (RSAF)

Important Dates and Information

Program Dates: May 20 - July 26, 2024

Application Deadline: January 15, 2024

Acceptance Notice: February 15, 2024 (Tentative)

2024 RSAF Guidelines

Proposal Information Form (Required)

(Instructions for Completing Proposal Information Form:  Open Link, Under Edit Document, Select Open in Desktop App)

Proposal Submission Link

About the Research and Scholarly Advancement Fellowship (RSAF) Program

All Heritage College students who will successfully complete the Year 1 medical school curriculum by the end of the spring semester are invited to apply for the RSAF program. Students must be in good academic and professional standing, with no Code of Professional Standards violations on record.  Students from all three Heritage College campuses are encouraged to apply. 

Under the guidance of the mentor, students conduct intensive short-term (10-week) research projects in selected areas of biomedical/basic, social-behavioral medicine, primary care, medical education or clinical investigation. Students will participate in a core curriculum consisting of seminars on broad topics in medical research. They will complete an oral or poster presentation describing their research, to be presented during the last week of the summer program. 

The objectives of the RSAF program are to provide a valuable experience for highly motivated and talented medical students to participate in a defined research project; to acquaint students with scientific methodology; to enhance their analytic and laboratory skills; and to provide an opportunity to improve their presentation and writing skills. The program provides foundational skills for future physicians to use scientific evidence as a basis in their clinical decision making and to consider the possibility of pursing research as physician-scientists dedicated to enhancing health care.

The fellowship pays $3,000 to assist fellows with living expenses over the course of the program.

Students are expected to review the current program guidelines carefully as they contain very important information and details related to the program.  Students must submit proposals according to the current program guidelines in order to be considered for funding.


For additional information, please contact:
The Heritage College Office of Research and GrantsNadine Borovicka, program manager, or Jessica Wingett, director of research administration and student research and RSAF program director

Two people working on whiteboard

RSAF Class of 2023

Student Name Project Title Primary Mentor
Aaron Batke Perturbed Gait Protocol Design to Evaluate Sensory-Cerebellar Structural Connectivity and Biomechanical Adaptations Dr. Dustin Grooms
Stephen Bell Impact of the Intervention of Productive Gardens in the Communities of Guara, Chaquizhca, and Bellamaria after Implementation Dr. Benjamin Bates
Samuel Borgemenke Impact of Social Determinants of Health on Diabetes Rates in Ohio Dr. Allyson Hughes
Talia Caridi Health Literacy & Eliminating Chagas Disease Dr. Benjamin Bates
Jessica Chebra Children's emotional and physiological responses to images associated with COVID-19 Dr. Emily Guseman
Matt Dugan The Quadriceps Neural and Muscle Activation Patterns Elicited by Virtual Reality Dr. Dustin Grooms
Kenneth Jenkins Improving Endothelium Function to Protect against Atheroma Dr. Vishwajeet Puri
Clarke Kellum The Role of Social and Environmental Determinants, Obstetric Racism, and Cultural Factors on Black Women's Experiences of Breastfeeding in Northeast Ohio: a Qualitative Pilot Study Dr. Sarah Rubin
Thomas Krauss The Effects of Piezo on Calcium Levels in Islets and Beta Cells Dr. Craig Nunemaker
Katherine Kulp Aging and Frailty in Elderly Adults in Rural Ecuador Dr. Graciela Muniz-Terrera
Daria Kuperberg Ukranian Female Refugees' Perceptions of Mental Health Dr. Ilana Chertok
Kristoforos Proko Developing a Surgical Approach to Dissecting LIMA from Mice to Study Atheroschlerosis Dr. Vishwajeet Puri
Peter Saad Identify the Case of Plaque Protection in the Left Internal Mammary Artery Dr. Vishwajeet Puri
Nicholas Scneker Comparison of Injury Versus Other Top Causes of Death in the United States: 1900-2020 Dr. Henry Xiang
Bryan Soth Quantifying Physical Performance during Typical Clinical Return to Activity Testing Dr. Dustin Grooms
Marlon Szczepaniak Effects of Class I Glucose Transporter Antagonist DRB-18 on Advanced, Adrogen-Independent Prostate Cancer Dr. Thomas Rosol
Gabrielle Thayer Impact of Productive Grardens in the Communities of Guara, Chaquizca, and Bellamaria after Implementation Dr. Mario Grijalva
Kendale Watson The Role of Social and Environmental Determinants, Obstetric Racism, and Cultural Factors on Black Women's Experiences of Breastfeeding in Northeast Ohio: a Qualitative Pilot Study Dr. Sarah Rubin
Unique Willis-Norris Relationship of Musculoskeletal Disorders and Work Activity in the Communitites of Chaquizhca, Guar, and Bellamaria Dr. Mario Grijalva
Louis Zheng The Role of FSP27 in Atherosclerosis Resistance in Left Iternal Mammary Artery (LIMA) Dr. Vishwajeet Puri