2022 Grants Challenge

MiOra Public Health Internship Program

Idea by MiOra

This grant will support MiOra public-health internship program. MiOra has agreements with California State LA (CSULA) and CSU Long Beach (CSULB) Public Health Departments and receives undergraduate & masters students for experiential internships over 12-24 weeks. Approximately 30 youth from Cal State colleges and 20 youth who independently sign up on MiOra website will be supported by this grant. Youth from CS will receive college credit for successfully completing the program. MiOra provides a stipend & certificate of completion to all youth.


What is the primary issue area that your application will impact?

Youth Economic Advancement (sponsored by Funding Partner, TBA)

In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

County of Los Angeles

In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?

Expand existing project, program, or initiative

What is your understanding of the issue that you are seeking to address?

LA County has many high-paying healthcare & STEM job opportunities; however, these careers require advanced training and real-world experience. Internships are necessary to acquire real-world experience and build one’s resume. There are many internship programs in the LA County, but the underprivileged youth have barriers to access them. Research and data internships are limited in number and are very competitive. The underprivileged youth often have transportation challenges and financial or physical responsibilities at home that do not allow them to participate in internships. Their parents may not be able to support them through the US educational system due to their lack of experience and/or language barriers. They may not have a professional network. MiOra believes that it is imperative to provide the under-privileged youth with stipend paying, high quality, no-barrier and flexible internships that will allow them to network and improve their career trajectory.

Describe the project, program, or initiative this grant will support to address the issue.

MiOra internship provides the youth with certificate training, the students receive the University of Florida CITI HIPAA and MiOra completion certificates for free. The HIPAA CITI certification training is valid for 2-3 years, it is nationally accepted and is required to start a healthcare career. The youth design a real-world health education research project using PubMed and SurveyMonkey tools. They learn how to submit an Institutional Review Board (IRB) application and conduct a research study. They implement what they learned in school and educate their community to improve their health, collect effectiveness data and perform data analysis using Excel tool. The youth work with PowerPoint tool to develop a poster and present it at a local conference to improve their presentation skills. They use Microsoft Word tool to develop a manuscript and learn how to submit it to journals for publication. MiOra industry and academic mentors provide feedback and networking opportunity. The certificates, real-world research experience, networking and the soft-skills gained will strengthen the youth’s resume and make them more competitive for an advanced training and/or career.

Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.

MiOra internships not only support the LA County youth but also strengthen & expand the Cal State Colleges (CS) in LA. MiOra provides experiential internships which complement the CS didactic programs. MiOra youth have opportunity to learn and conduct real-world public health research, data analysis & presentation. Internships improve the LA County health when MiOra youth provides health education in their community. MiOra partners with UCLA Master of Applied Statistics (MAS) group for data analysis and partners with USC School of Pharmacy, Annual Moving Targets LA conference for poster presentation. These collaborations strengthen the UCLA MAS and USC Moving Targets LA programs and provide their faculty and students opportunities to network with MiOra youth. MiOra LA County industry mentors network with a diverse group of MiOra youth, which helps workforce development. MiOra youth have stronger resumes, which improve their acceptance to higher-quality academic programs & employment

What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?

Since 2016 MiOra supported 642 youth, 80% were female. Among those who declared race, 41% were Latinx & 31% Black. MiOra has internships in several areas: diabetes, heart health, vaccines, mental health, most recently cancer awareness & access. Since January 2022, 48 youth registered with MiOra. We track the impact of each program on each youth. For example, in the last 2 years, 14 youth participated in the cancer internship. The interns completed the internship successfully, received HIPAA certificate, Cal State students received credit and all youth received MiOra certificate. Each youth developed a unique community health education program and educated 389 people. They submitted two abstracts to the 16th International Conference on Clinical Gynecology and Women Oncology taking place in LA in October 2022. They will present their data at 2022 USC Moving Targets LA conference as well. Since founding, MiOra youth published 14 papers and presented close to 50 posters.

Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?

Direct Impact: 100

Indirect Impact: 1,000