Margolis Scholars in Medicine

Margolis Scholars is a university-wide program led and supported by the Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy. The program provides students interested in health policy and management from graduate schools across Duke with an interdisciplinary perspective on key health policy and management issues as well as relevant practical and research opportunities to support professional development. The program prepares students to cultivate dynamic careers in government, academia, nonprofit organizations, and the private sector.

The Margolis Scholars program is not a separate degree program, and Margolis Scholars enrolled at the School of Medicine are permitted to participate in joint degree programs available to medical students. 

Below are further details about the benefits of the Margolis Scholars program, Scholar expectations, eligibility and selection criteria, and the application process.


Margolis Scholars will receive:

  • A one-year financial award. 
  • The opportunity to work closely with Margolis-affiliated faculty mentors on a year-long research project and hone research skills to address an important issue(s) at the intersection of medicine and health policy.
  • Participation in Duke-Margolis Health Policy Center events and experiential learning opportunities, such as educational and networking trips to Washington, D.C. and professional development events.
  • Increased exposure to health care faculty, staff, and other experts across Duke as well as external senior leaders and practitioners.
  • Membership in the Margolis Scholars community of graduate students and broader Margolis Center community of faculty, research staff, and students.
  • Recognition as a Margolis Scholar.


Margolis Scholars are expected to fulfill the listed minimum expectations:

  • Working with a Margolis-affiliated faculty (and research staff members, if relevant) to conduct an independent research project during the third year of medical school. 
  • Scholars must meet all Third Year requirements including the Medical Statistics course and submission of a quantitative thesis. On some occasions and with prior approval, a qualitative thesis is admissible in health policy programs. For questions regarding Third Year, please contact
  • Participating in Margolis Scholars events (e.g., seminars, conferences, annual Scholars reception).
  • Organize at least one Margolis Center event per academic year, in collaboration with all Margolis Scholars across campus. 
  • Enrolling in or serving as Teaching Assistant to Duke School of Medicine and Duke-Margolis’ elective course, “Introduction to Healthcare Markets & Policy for Practitioners,” or engaging with a similar academic program in the event this course is not offered.

Eligibility & Selection Criteria

Margolis Scholars will be selected among students who are enrolled at Duke School of Medicine.  The ideal candidate:

  • Plans to apply for one of the following study tracks for 3rd year and is interested in working with one of the following Duke-Margolis affiliated faculty members:

    • Global Health (Available mentor: Yousuf Zafar).
    • Clinical Research Study Program (Available mentors: Adrian Hernandez, Jeffrey Clough, Dev Sangvai, Peter Ubel, Charlene Wong, Yousuf Zafar). 
    • Epidemiology and Public Health Study Program (Available mentors: Lesley Curtis, Peter Ubel). 
    • Neurosciences Study Program (Available mentor: Nandan Lad).
    • Cardiovascular Study Program (Available mentor: Eric Peterson).Is a rising 3rd year student in the medical program. Selected students will serve as Scholars during their 3rd year. 
  • Has shown high performance in all medical school courses.
  • Seeks to spend 3rd year pursuing a research project.
  • Has demonstrated an interest in health policy through related internships, work experience, extracurricular activities at Duke, or elsewhere.

Application Process

Applicants should submit the Third Year Internal Scholarship Application by April 1, 2019

Final candidates will be invited to interview.

Students will become Margolis Scholars at the beginning of their MS III year (Fall 2019).

For more information:

Corinna Sorenson, PhD, MHSA, MPH, Faculty Director, Margolis Scholars Program. Email