Health Equity Leadership & Mentoring Program

Mission Statement

To enhance the academic excellence and leadership capacity of diverse faculty and health disparities researchers at the University of Minnesota to reduce health inequities

Now Accepting Applications for the 2021-2022 HELM Program

The HELM program is seeking applicants for the 2021-2022 cycle. There are 10-12 positions available and will be filled on a rolling basis until September 3, 2021. Programming is slated to be in-person but may change to hybrid or virtual to adhere to COVID-19 policies in place during the fall. Submit your application today! Email if you have any questions.

Program Components

  • Seminar Series Sessions: Fellows who are accepted into the program attend monthly seminar series sessions. In addition to traditional academic career development topics, seminars will cover critical topics in health equity research and leadership, i.e. cultural resonance and diversity, micro-aggressions and historical trauma, and the continuing impact of institutional racism on professional development in the 21st century. 
  • Mentoring: Fellows are matched with a senior level faculty mentor. Mentors in the program offer training on cultural diversity with proven methods to enhance mentoring effectiveness. Current mentor/mentee dyads can be considered for the program.

Who Should Apply?

The HELM program was designed specifically for UMN faculty and post-doctoral trainees who self-identify as a member of a community impacted by health inequities* and/or whose research addresses health disparities. 

*Examples include, but not limited to: BIPOC, LGBTQ, people with disabilities, first-generation, rural, low SES, etc...


  • Receive $250 in career development funds
  • Mileage reimbursement for attending HELM seminars and events
  • Opportunities to meet with local and national leaders on topics of leadership development and health equity issues
  • Priority consideration for local and national professional development opportunities
  • Develop a professional network with other health equity scholars
  • Obtain a plaque upon successful completion of the program


Expectations for HELM Fellows include:

  • Attend the kickoff seminar - Friday, September 17, 2021 from 12:00 pm - 4:30 pm*
  • The seminar series is held on the 3rd Friday of each month (October 2021 - June 2022) from 11:00 am - 1:00 pm*
    • Must be able to attend at least 7 out of 9 seminar series sessions
  • Meet at least three times with your assigned HELM mentor over the course of the program
    • Complete an individual development plan, which includes a self-assessment, short and long-term goal setting, etc. that will be reviewed at each mentor meeting
    • Participate in the mentor/fellow matching process, which may include short introductory meetings with potential mentors
  • Complete program evaluations
  • Provide post-program updates to program staff