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The Putnam Scholars Program

Click here to view application information
The application deadline for the 2021 cohort has passed.
Applications for the 2022 cohort will be available in early 2022.

Educators and researchers at universities, colleges, hospitals, and health care organizations who are members of ACH may apply for the Putnam Scholars Program (PSP). Restricted gifts will sustain both Sam’s longstanding enthusiasm for networking among schools, countries and disciplines, and his ardor about expanding the cadre of physicians, educators and researchers who are skilled in healthcare communication and relationship-centered care.

Goal of the Putnam Scholars Program
  1. To expose participating scholars to a broad range of ideas at the intersection of health care and communication scholarship;
  2. To partner participating scholars with senior ACH mentors conducting health care communication research and/or education for networking, intellectual mentorship, and professional development;
  3. To present scholarly work annually at the ACH hosted International Conference on Communication in Healthcare (ICCH) or ACH Research Forum conferences.
  4. To build a community of ACH members, current and former PSP scholars and their mentors for networking, research support, value added for ACH members in general.

Benefits & Responsibilities of Participation

Benefits for participation in the Putnam Scholars Program include:  

  • Developing and refine original research, educational curricula, or evaluation activities related to health communication.
  • Receiving one-on-one mentorship in health communication from an established ACH senior scholar.
  • Expanding knowledge of the diversity of health communication theories, methods, and applications through regular research colloquia with other Putnam Scholars and their mentors.
  • Forging new professional and interpersonal relationships with mentors, ACH and ICCH attendees, and other people committed to improving health communication.
  • Financial support for each year of PSP participation for ACH/ICCH sponsored conference attendance, including registration fees, hotel accommodation, and airfare.

Responsibilities for participation in the Putnam Scholars Program include:

  • Attending at least three research meetings sponsored by ACH and ICCH during PSP participation.
  • Participating in an annual 1-day retreat with mentors and other new Putnam Scholars.
  • Meeting monthly or bi-monthly with mentor.
  • Meeting quarterly with other Putnam Scholars & mentors.
  • Participation in a private, online community with other Putnam Scholars, mentors & Putnam Scholar Alumni.
  • Presenting working and final projects at ICCH conferences and ACH Research Forums.

Mentorship Relationship
Mentorship is the cornerstone of the Putnam Scholars Program, as participants will work with a senior ACH mentor who will help the scholar design and implement a project focused on health communication. Over the two year program, Putnam Scholars will meet monthly or bi-monthly with mentors for one-on-one telephone or video meetings to refine projects and to establish connections with related scholars working in their field of interest. The Award will cover meeting costs for the Mentor to attend two ACH meetings as the mentor is required to participate in two ACH meetings.

Putnam Scholars Program Structure
The PSP is a two-year fellowship program that starts either in Summer or Fall, depending on the year (See Timeline below). 
Starting year Meeting1 Meeting2 Meeting3
Summer Start (2020 Cohort) June 2020
 ICCH October 17-20, 2021
Rio Mar, Puerto Rico
ACH Forum June (2022)
Dates/Location TBD
Fall Start (2021 Cohort) ICCH October 17-20, 2021
Rio Mar, Puerto Rico 
ACH Forum June (2022)
Dates/Location TBD
ICCH October (2023)
Dates/Location TBD
Summer Start (2022 Cohort) ACH Forum June (2022)
Dates/Location TBD
 ICCH October (2023)
Dates/Location TBD
ACH Forum June (2024)
Dates/Location TBD

Putnam Scholars will participate in a 1-day retreat with their mentors immediately before meetings 1, 2 and 3. The retreat will introduce scholars starting the fellowship to the research and teaching cultures of ACH and will foster a sense of community among scholars and ACH research mentors. During the retreat, scholars and ACH research mentors will discuss and refine research ideas in participants’ areas of interest, methodology, analytic approaches, funding mechanisms and opportunities, and practical strategies for implementing research ideas during program participation. 
After the retreat, Putnam Scholars and their mentors are expected to meet individually once per month or every other month by phone or video to discuss project progress, to troubleshoot problems, and to plan for upcoming opportunities, such as presentations, manuscripts, and grant applications. Scholars will be encouraged to present preliminary findings from their working projects at Meeting 2 and final results at Meeting 3. ACH will support travel, accommodation, and registration to the three required research meetings. 
While Putnam Scholars and their mentors will be expected to meet collectively at each research meeting to discuss projects and opportunities, scholars are encouraged to keep contact more frequently with one another throughout their time as fellows in the program. To this end, quarterly calls are scheduled for the scholars to enable networking and collaboration.


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