Student Resources

The GFE award is an amazing opportunity for students to receive financial support to complete an Applied Practicum Experience (APE) outside of the United States. GFE afforded me the opportunity to: gain international experience, learn how cultural context may influence health outcomes, and it forced me to use the skills and knowledge I gained during my 1st year at Rollins.

Quote from 2018 GFE recipient

View successful GFE proposals from previous years

Accepted after minor revisions

GFE Funded Projects

Visit this page to learn about the projects that were supported by GFE Funds from 1998 till 2018. Use it as inspiration for your own projects or as guide to understand the proposals that have been approved. 

Past Global Field Experiences funded by the GFE Award. 

GFE Costs

Rollins’ GFE program gives MPH and MSPH students an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in low-resource or high-disparity settings around the world. Students typically pay for the experience with:

  • Funding from U.S., international, and in-country host organizations
  • Grants (including the Global Field Experience Awards listed below)
  • Scholarships
  • Personal savings

Predicted Practicum Costs

Below is a budget report based on data collected from student expenses in 2017**. This information is intended for planning purposes only.

** Summer 2017 Average costs for students participating in Non-US-Based Field experience

Item Average Cost

International Flight








Incidentals Personal Fun/Travel


Internet & Phone


In-Country Transportation


Visa & Immunizations


Work Related Expenses





= 3,838

GFE Application Process 

The GFE award application process is circular, not linear. Challenge yourself to REFLECT, EXPLORE, PLAN and CONSULT, before you APPLY. Be humble and accept feedback with grace, before you compile or submit your application.


Think about your priorities and the skills you want to develop during your summer field experience. Use this worksheet to guide your thoughts.


For funding consideration, a GFE project must be an applied public health field experience of value to the community and the student.

Identify an opportunity for your global field experience.

Opportunities and ideas are everywhere!


  • Review the slides from the GFE Award Information Session for the 2018-2019 Award Cycle
  • Review dates for the 2018-2019 GFE Financial Award cycle
  • Prepare your resume or CV
    • If you haven’t taught or published a lot, then you should use a resume. If you have extensive work and academic experience, then a CV is more appropriate. Please plan ahead and meet with a Career Services representative or Career Services Ambassador (peer) for guidance in advance on preparing your résumé or CV.
  • Connect with your host organization early and often. 
    • Use the provided “Guide for Host Organizations” inform them and facilitate discussions with your host organization.

    • Make sure you have a local contact that you are working with throughout the project development and that they contribute towards both your project AND supervision during the program.

    • Communicate in advance on project components (e.g., rainy season, dry season, Ramadan, populations at risk, personal and beneficiary risk mitigation, confidential data management, etc.)

    • Be sure that your project contributes to the needs of the organization and is documented in proposal.
    • Are they able to provide any in-kind support such as subsidizing accommodations (get details!); providing ground transportation; covering the cost of translators or research participant incentives?
    • Make sure you ask whether local/national IRB is required. If so, it will often take a long time. Start early and discuss with your advisors. Don’t expect them to tell you everything you need to know - ASK QUESTIONS and stay in communication.
  • Review materials for review by the Institutional Research Board (IRB)
  • Schedule your immunizations (do not wait until April as appointments fill very quickly. Find resource below for more information on vaccine requirements and services.
  • Review visa requirements and travel guidance
  • Learn about safety and evacuation planning
  • Call your health insurance provider, using the number on the back of your health insurance card, to ask about coverage outside the U.S. You may need to purchase supplemental travel insurance to maintain coverage.
  • Anticipate Expenses
    • GFE awards will not cover all the cost of your experience. Expenses will vary widely by region. Please review the data presented above from the Summer Field Experience survey of students who completed global field experiences in 2017. The average total cost of a summer field experience was $3,838. Credit: Summer Field Experiences 2017 Financial Report by Evelyn Howatt/Donahoe
  • Be aware of important events and deadlines related to the GFE Award. 

Important Dates For 2018-2019

Application Deadlines  Date
Application Opens Online

December 15th, 2018

Faculty Member Sign-off Required

February 21st, 2019

Applications Due

February 22nd, 2019

First Tier Notifications Sent

March 8th, 2019

Revise and Re-Submit


March 22nd, 2019

5:00 PM

Final Notifications and Award Letters Sent 


GFE Events Date
GFE Award Information Session


October 22, 2018 

12-1 Klamon Room

Mandatory Pre-Departure Training  TBD



Find a faculty guide in the fall semester if possible – this could be your advisor, a mentor, an APE advisor or someone with expertise in the country, topic or methodology you are proposing.

  • Consult with your faculty guide and APE Advisor and the IRB to determine IF your project requires IRB review. Email to set up a meeting with an IRB analyst.
    • If Emory IRB review is required, you MUST have Emory IRB approval before conducting any Human Subjects Research that requires review. Emory IRB review can take as little as 2-3 weeks, but will take considerably longer if the submitted protocol is incomplete or unclear as to the procedures and the engagement of Emory or of potential participants.
    • Local IRB review may also be required. Your Field Supervisor will be the best source of information about that.  Emory IRB does not require local review unless local laws and regulations require it, and does not control how long such a review might take. Where local laws and regulations do not require local IRB review, Emory IRB expects a ‘letter of cultural context’ to be supplied from someone with research experience in that setting who can provide an opinion on the cultural acceptability of the methods on the local context, and especially on the approach to obtaining informed consent of potential research participants. The Emory IRB staff can provide more guidance on who can provide such a letter and what it should contain. Emory IRB will provide a ‘conditional approval’ letter for a local IRB as needed, when the only remaining requirement is local review.
  • Repeat this process with your in-country host/field supervisor
  • Talk to second years and international students, ask about how they communicated in-country, best data plans, social media taxes, comforts from “home” they had to do without, what they wish they had/had not brought with them


Only online applications will be accepted. The application link for the 2018-2019 GFE Fund will be found here in December, untill then a preview has been provided.

To have a link to the application sent to you when it is ready, please fill out this Short Interest Form (if you registered at the information session on October 22, you do not need to do this again.)

Additional Resources for Students

For additional tips from the student perspective see:



Heather Zesiger

Senior Director Student Engagement

(404) 712-8926

Deborah McFarland (PHD, MPH)

Director of GFE Fund

(404) 727-7849