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Mental Health First Aid Doctoral Student Grants

The Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) USA Doctoral Student Grants represent a commitment by the National Council for Behavioral Health to grow the research behind and evaluation of all MHFA programs. Each year, the grant will provide a one-time award of $5,000 to four outstanding full-time doctoral students who demonstrate significant potential as researchers in their fields of study and who are interested in evaluating the outcomes of MHFA trainings in the U.S.


  • Full-time doctoral student pursuing a degree in psychology, public health, or related field of study.
  • Previous evaluation experience and demonstrated ability to document findings through publications and/or presentations.
  • Documented experience with MHFA (e.g., as an MHFA Instructor or Coordinator) and/or strong interest in MHFA.


Once funded, doctoral grant recipients must:

  • Submit regular research updates to the MHFA team.
  • Participate in quarterly research calls with other grantees.
  • Submit a final report of research findings to the MHFA team within two years of receiving the grant.
  • Participate as a presenter at an MHFA-sponsored event highlighting research.
  • Pursue a formal publication or presentation opportunity. (MHFA- or National Council-sponsored opportunities, such as NatCon, the MHFA Summit or a MHFA Research Symposium, may be allowed).

Learn More

Attend our informational webinar on Tuesday, May 3 from 12-12:45 p.m. ET to learn more about the MHFA Doctoral Student Grants. Register today!


Apply today!

The deadline for applying is May 27, 2022.

Interested doctoral students must apply to be considered for the grant. Successful applicants will demonstrate innovative ideas for measuring MHFA program outcomes and diverse program evaluation.

Awardee Selection

A committee of MHFA staff and Research Advisors will review all applications May 30th-June 10th, 2022. Finalists will be interviewed by a panel, and the top four candidates will be awarded grants. Prior to receiving the grant funding, top candidates and their advisors must sign a memorandum of understanding committing to all requirements.

Important Dates

Date Task
April 22, 2022 Grant application released
May 27th, 2022 Grant application deadline
May 20th-June 10th, 2022 Grant applications reviewed and finalists selected
June 20th-24th, 2022 Finalist interviews
June 24th-July 1st, 2022 Awardees selected
July 14th, 2022 Awardee announced


Our 2021 MHFA Doctoral Student Grant Awardees

Caroline Barry

Second-year PhD student, behavioral, social and health education sciences, Emory University

Mazneen Havewala

Second-year PhD student, school psychology, University of Maryland, College Park

Olivia Khoo

Fourth-year PhD student, school psychology, Columbia University

Melanie Soderstrom

Fifth-year PhD student, criminal justice, University of Central Florida
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