Alaska Heart Institute Fellowship

These grants fund significant undergraduate research projects in biomedicine under the guidance of a faculty mentor.  Each grant funds up to $5000.00 in project costs, plus tuition for up to 6 credits of HNRS 498 (Individual Research), HNRS 497 (Independent Study) or a departmental equivalent course or a combination of an HNRS course and a departmental course, and a $1500.00 stipend awarded upon completion of the project. This award is sponsored by the University Honors College.

Alaska Heart Institute Fellowships are made possible by a major gift from the Alaska Cardiovascular Research Foundation.

Deadline for Spring 2018 is March 28, 2018.

Proposals should be submitted to the Office of Undergraduate Research & Scholarship. 

Eligibility: Students must be accepted in an associate or baccalaureate degree program at the University of Alaska Anchorage (any campus) and must be enrolled in at least three credits each semester for the duration of the research (with the exception of the summer semester).  Students in all disciplines are encouraged to apply. 

Blain Shillington and Dr. Cindy Knall

First recipient of the AHI Award, Blaine Shillington, an engineering major, with his faculty mentor, Dr. Cindy Knall in the WWAMI Biomedical Program. 
Photo by Carol Jones. 

Proposal Guidelines

Research Proposal: The project should reflect an original idea that will extend knowledge in biomedicine. Your proposal should consist of the nine (9) items listed below. Please include page numbers.

1.  Alaska Heart Institute Fellowship Cover Sheet: Include the project title, student’s name, and student’s signature. The faculty advisor’s name and signature should be included, certifying that they have reviewed the research proposal for content and that the student is capable of performing the research, and that the faculty member agrees to mentor the student for the duration of the project and serve as the instructor of record for the HNRS 497 credits. The Research Integrity and Compliance checklist, included on the cover sheet, must also be completed. For more information on Research Integrity and Compliance at UAA, please visit

2. Abstract and Specific Aims (1 page) – A one paragraph summary of the project proposal, and a one paragraph summary of the project goals.

3. Introduction (1 page) – A review of the literature that supports the need for your research in biomedicine. The proposal should include (a) a statement of the research questions, problem and/or hypothesis; (b) a historical discussion of the impacts; and (c) a discussion of present understanding and/or state of knowledge concerning the question or problem.

4. Research Design (1 page) – The proposal should include a detailed description of how the research project will be completed including (a) a sampling protocol and/or design plan; (b) the methods and/or procedures to be used; (c) the data reduction and statistical analysis to be conducted or a description of the final form of the product.

5. Anticipated Results (1 page) – Provide the reviewers with a list of the results expected.  The results should include an interpretation and explanation of results as related to hypothesis tested. Also, applicants may want to discuss or suggest further work that may help address the identified problem.

6. Project Budget (allow one page for the budget and one page for budget justification) – Include the cost of supplies, equipment, and travel, and a brief justification for each item.

Please note the following:
a. The student stipend should not be included in the project budget.

b. Travel will be allowed only if it falls within the same academic year(s) as your research and there is a direct relationship between the research and the travel being proposed (e.g. for the purposes of conducting research, or to present results at a conference). Funding for travel to a conference will be granted only if the student is accepted to present at that conference and supporting documentation is included (e.g., letter of acceptance) in the proposal.

c. Expenses that will not be allowed include:

i. Compensation for the student’s time
ii. Tuition to get credit for the project
iii. Amounts for supplies or equipment that exceed reasonable and customary expenses

d. Equipment purchased with the grant will belong to UAA after the research is concluded.

e. Proposed expenses must be in accordance with UA Policy and Regulation, and funds must be expended as specified in the proposal.

f. For this reason, please be as accurate as possible in estimating your expenses. Do not over-inflate your budget; conversely, do not underestimate what your actual costs will be.

g. If the project has funding from an external source outside of OURS include an appendix with information about the funding (e.g. grant proposal, contract, etc.), a short narrative that explains how the proposed project meshes with the external source, and a budget that shows what will be funded by the OURS grant and the external source.

7. Project References (1 page) – Use the standard convention of discipline including the author, title of article, journal title, volume, pages, and date.

8. Project Timeline – Outline the anticipated dates of completion of various stages of the project. For example: When do you anticipate completing background research, fieldwork, lab work, budget expenditures, etc. Be sure to include in this timeline your presentation date at the Undergraduate Research Symposium (April 2019), the expenditure deadline (December 15, 2018), and final written report deadline (December 15, 2018). 

9. Appendix  – Include your academic vitae (3 page limit) and an unofficial copy of your undergraduate transcript (no page limit).

Review Process:  The proposal is judged on its scientific strength and on its emphasis on advancing knowledge in biomedicine. The objectives and evaluation methods must be clearly defined. The proposal must be written by the student. The faculty mentor may review and provide advice on the writing of the proposal, but it must be clear that the student has written the proposal and understands the project.

The academic record, particularly in the sciences, will weigh heavily in the selection of the proposals. Preference will be given to students who are at least in their junior year.

Additional Requirements and Conditions:  A Final Report (2-3 pages) must be submitted to the UAA’s Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship when the project is completed. The Final Report (2-3 pages), should be written for a general audience and should summarize the student’s research activities, progress, findings, and conclusions. Awardees are required to present their results at UAA’s Undergraduate Research and Discovery Symposium held in April of each year. Additionally, awardees are required to meet and share their project findings and conclusions with members of the Alaska Heart Institute at the conclusion of the project.

Instructions for Completing the Cover Sheet:

  1. Download the interactive .pdf file.
  2. Either (a) complete the form electronically and print or (b) print the form and complete by hand.
  3. Collect necessary signatures.
  4. Either (a) deliver the completed, signed cover sheet and additional application materials to the Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship in RH 115 or (b) scan completed, signed cover sheet and email all application materials to


Alaska Heart Institute Fellowship Cover Sheet

If you have any questions, please contact the Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship at 907-786-1086 or
Blain Shillington and Dr. Cindy Knall

AHI award winner, Blaine Shillington, with his faculty mentor, Dr. Cindy Knall (WWAMI Biomedical Program).  Blaine, a mechanical engineering student, researched and built an In Vitro Smoke Exposure machine to assist with Dr. Knall's research. Photo by Carol Jones.