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ÁNDALE Latino Research Training Program

ANDALE logo - a graduate is the "A" and an apple is the "D"The Advancing Nutrition Development through Alliance for Education and Leadership (ÁNDALE) Latino Research Training Program aims to train fifty (50) underrepresented undergraduate students in Latino nutrition and disease prevention, enhance their professional development, and engage them in research with a faculty mentor in an effort to better prepare them to enter graduate school or the workforce.


The ÁNDALE application cycle for this year has closed.

Program Activities

The ÁNDALE Latino Research Training Program is a 10-week research and training program for undergraduate students to understand the contexts wherein nutrition and health-related decisions and behaviors occur by engaging in nutrition and health related research while receiving mentorship from faculty and staff. The program will begin with an intensive one-week orientation and training (See table below). The purpose of the training is to provide students with an understanding of the research process, specifically, community-based participatory research as it relates to nutrition and Latino health, responsible and ethical conduct of research, and professional development. For the remaining nine weeks, students will conduct research for 10 hours per week with a faculty mentor and receive mentorship. At the end of the 10 weeks, students will give 10-minute presentations on their experience, including the research project, skills and knowledge gained, and future goals. Students will also have the opportunity to submit an abstract and attend a professional conference with all expenses paid.

Training & Orientation Overview

Day 1 Introduction to Latino nutrition, nutrition-related chronic diseases affecting Latinos, leadership development
Day 2 Effective research methods for working with Latinos including, CBPR, Promotores de Salud (community health workers), a biopsychosocial research approach, responsible & ethical conduct in research, professional etiquette, elevator speeches
Day 3 Mixed methods research including quantitative and qualitative data, with an emphasis on focus groups, developing interventions and programs, career planning, graduate school
Day 4 Culturally responsive nutrition education among Latinos including cultural and linguistic competence and appropriate services (CLAS), dietary and physical activity national goals and recommendations, resume, CV, cover letters
Day 5 Understanding scientific literature, abstract and poster development, student and faculty research panel, goal setting, individual development plans

2020 Program Dates

Training August 5th – 7th and August 10th – 11th 
Research August 24th – October 23rd
Presentations October 23rd

Apply to the Program

Student Selection Criteria

  • Over the age of 18
  • Junior or senior standing
  • Health science, nutrition, or kinesiology major
  • Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA
  • Able to commit to a 40 hour one-week training in August and 10 hours per week for 9 weeks during the semester
  • Interested in Latino nutrition and disease prevention

Special consideration will be given to students who are first generation educated, have financial need, with disabilities, or from ethnic minority groups. Ten students will be selected each year.


The ÁNDALE application cycle for this year has closed.

The complete application package must include: 

  • Complete Undergraduate Research Fellow Application Form.
  • Unofficial Transcripts from all schools attended.
  • One (1) letter of recommendation from a faculty or advisor (submitted by the faculty/advisor via this Qualtrics Link).
  • A Personal Statement (500 words)
    • Tell us why you are interested in receiving training in Latino nutrition and disease prevention.
    • Describe your interest in engaging in public health research. What do you expect to learn?
    • How will participating in the ÁNDALE Latino Training Program help your future education and/or career goals?
  • Resume (1-2 pages) including college(s) attended, community service/volunteer and work experiences, and extracurricular activities.


Program Details

Program Goals & Objectives


  1. 100% of student participants will graduate with a degree in nutrition, health, or kinesiology.
  2. 100% of student participants will enter the workforce or pursue graduate studies immediately following graduation.


  1. 95% of student participants will be in good academic standing as measured by a 3.0 term GPA one semester after participation.
  2. 100% of student participants will be on track to graduate based on degree planners.
  3. 85% of student participants will report they are better prepared to apply for graduate school or enter the workforce.


  1. 85% of student participants will demonstrate increased research knowledge, skills, and ability as measured by pre-and-post-test.
  2. 90% of student participants will demonstrate increased knowledge regarding Latino nutrition and chronic diseases as measured by pre-and-post-test.
  3. 90% of student participants will report increased knowledge of culturally and linguistically relevant nutrition education and interventions as measured by pre-and-post-test.
  4. 50% of student participants will continue research with faculty mentor beyond program funding.


ÁNDALE Leadership Team

Dr. Melawhy Garcia

Melawhy Garcia, Ph.D., MPH
Principal Investigator / Primary Mentor
Health Science

Natalia Gatdula

Natalia Gatdula, MPH
Program Manager
Center for Latino Community Health, Evaluation & Leadership Training