About the HESP

The Health Equity Scholars Program (HESP) provides future investigators in the field of Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias (ADRDs) with the knowledge, skills and resources to become culturally competent and proficient researchers. HESP provides a tailored mentored training approach to advance career success and satisfaction among its trainees.


This program is geared towards emerging scientists from underrepresented populations (e.g., Black/African American, Latina/o/x/e, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, and Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander) and those with a commitment to brain health equity research in ADRDs. Our ultimate goal is to address the current lack of ethnoculturally/linguistically diverse and culturally competent ADRD professionals in the workforce. Applicants from various career stages including graduate/medical students, postdoctoral fellows and early career faculty are eligible for the program.

The HESP is an umbrella term for the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) and Health and Aging Brain Study-Health Disparities (HABS-HD) mentoring programs.

  • Click here to learn about the ADNI HESP program
  • Click here to learn about the HABS-HD HESP program

Did you know?

Black/African American and Latina/o/x/e adults are up to three times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease than non-Latina/o/x/e whites. Yet, they remain greatly underrepresented in research despite the rapid expansion among these populations.

Dementia inequities are an escalating major public health threat and the lack of culturally competent ADRD professionals prepared to study, evaluate, diagnose and treat these underrepresented populations may further exacerbate these issues.

Although the HESP is supported by two distinct NIH-NIA U19 grants (the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative, ADNI and the Health and Aging Brain Study-Health Disparities, HABS-HD), the programs are being jointly administered under the direction of Drs. Ozioma Okonkwo and Monica Rivera Mindt. Please see the respective tabs for more information about each mentoring program.