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Implementation Division Summer Internship Program

About the Institute

The UNC Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute (FPG) is one of the nation's oldest and largest multidisciplinary centers devoted to the study of children and families. More than 250 researchers, implementation and technical assistance specialists, staff, and students work on more than 50 projects related to developmental disabilities; early care and education; physical, social, and emotional health; and racial, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, and socioeconomic diversity. Our work crosses many disciplines from education and psychology to social work and public health.

FPG researchers study important issues facing children and families, and we use this information to enhance policy and improve practice. We are committed to sharing the information we generate with the public and to supporting professionals' understanding and use of evidence-based practices. FPG's dedication to both research and outreach is embodied in our motto: Advancing knowledge to transform children's lives.

About the Implementation Division

The FPG Implementation Division was founded in February of 2019. Implementation Division members work on more than 21 projects across multiple states—9 projects have a national presence, and 43% of the projects are in partnership with other UNC departments. The Division strives to bring an equity focus to all projects and partnerships. We engage in relationship-driven practices that take into account local context for the project goals.

Using implementation science and best practices, the work of the Division is active and applied and facilitates improved outcomes for evidence-based practices. The work of the Division is informed by research from the field of implementation as well as related fields, and projects use data to inform continuous improvement practices. Our capacity-building work is tailored and flexible to meet the needs of the communities we work in whether the work is statewide, within a governance structure, community-wide, or within a service delivery agency or school. The Implementation Division consists of three workgroups—The Impact Center, the National Implementation Research Network (NIRN), and the Trohanis Technical Assistance Projects.

About the Internship Program

The Implementation Division is seeking up to three graduate students to join its summer internship program in 2021. The program is designed to create a challenging and meaningful professional experience for the trainee that includes mentoring, networking, professional development, and experiential learning opportunities. Interns will benefit from exposure to implementation practice and research across diverse fields and in varied practice settings. This experience will provide knowledge and skill development that should enhance and inform the intern's future academic and professional pursuits.

Qualified applicants should have some familiarity with implementation science principles and practices, but extensive background experience is not required. Interns should be available to start between May 17 and May 24. Internships are part-time and will last approximately 8 weeks depending on the project. Compensation is $20 per hour for master's level students and $25 per hour for doctoral students. The internship is currently planned as fully remote per FPG work policies.

Opportunities (candidates may apply for multiple internships if desired):

Development of an Equity Assessment of ICTP Tools and Resources

Within the Impact Center at FPG's Implementation Capacity for Triple P (ICTP) project, implementation support providers develop tools and resources to support local, regional, and state partners' efforts to implement and scale-up the Triple P – Positive Parenting Program system of interventions across North Carolina and South Carolina. These tools and resources are key to support our partners' implementation efforts. Our field and workgroup are committed to centering implementation practices on equity and inclusion. Therefore, it is important our tools and resources are developed with an equity lens, and are accessible, equitable, and user friendly.

This internship will include a literature review of existing equity assessment tool(s) and measures to inform development of a process to assess and/or measure equity and accessibility of ICTP tools and resources. The equity assessment process and tool(s) should answer the question, "to what extent are the ICTP projects providing tools that are accessible, equitable, and user friendly to our partners?"

Questions that may be considered in developing the measure include:

  • What dimensions of equity and inclusion might be appropriate to consider?
  • What existing equity assessments or measures of accessibility might inform a new process for tool development?
  • What equity and accessibility assessment protocol or survey methodology may best be used in this context?

The following deliverables are expected through this internship opportunity:

  • A feasible measure or assessment, with accompanying administration protocol, that can be used in the context of the Implementation Capacity for Triple P (ICTP) projects and inform other Center projects.
  • A presentation to the FPG Implementation Division on the results of this work.
  • An identified conference and/or paper proposal that can be completed with Impact Center at FPG colleagues following the internship period.

The work is expected to lead to:

  • Intern knowledge of applied implementation science and equity
  • Intern and Impact Center staff knowledge and capacity to use develop and use equity tools and resources
  • Expanded access to equity related tools and resources through the ICTP Simulation Lab
  • Identification of opportunities for equity-related implementation support practice improvement

Desired applicant experience and skills:

  • Experience, coursework and/or current training in diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Experience, coursework and/or current training working in diverse systems and/or populations
  • Research/evaluation experience in organizational or systems theory and development
  • Experience and/or current training in developing new measures or assessment protocols
  • Exposure to implementation science concepts, theories, and frameworks
  • Ability to synthesize literature and engage in strong conceptual thinking
  • Excellent writing and presentation skills
  • Ability to work well autonomously within a supportive mentoring environment
  • Ability to work well both independently and within teaming environments

The intern would need to be available for 30 hours per week, for 8-9 weeks (270 hours). Project Mentors are: Sherra Lawrence (co-mentor) and Capri McDonald (co-mentor). Collaborators are Ariel Everett, Jessica Reed, and Rebecca Roppolo, all from The Impact Center at FPG.

NC Integrated Care for Kids – A pilot study of the InCK Consultant Role

The NC Integrated Care for Kids model is a child-centered local service delivery and state payment model aimed at improving the quality of care and reducing expenditures for children insured by Medicaid or CHIP (NC Health Choice). NC InCK aims to integrate services for children, including physical and behavioral health, food, housing, early care and education, Title V, child welfare, mobile crisis response services, juvenile justice, and legal aid. The NC InCK model is serving children in 5 central North Carolina counties who are insured by Medicaid or CHIP (NC Health Choice) from birth up through age 20. A key component of the InCK model is the Integration Consultant. The Integration Consultant is a new role intended to support and expand the ability of care managers and other family service providers working across multiple sectors to coordinate and integrate care to improve child and family health and well-being. A team of InCK staff are working to develop the model. Planning is underway for a pilot test of the prioritized model elements in the summer of 2021. Lessons learned will be used to inform development of the role leading up to the 2022 launch of the InCK implementation period.

The selected intern will support the summer 2021 pilot study of the InCK Integration Consultant model.

The intern will support:

  • Pilot testing with identified partners
  • Collection and analysis of pilot data
  • Identification of consultant model improvements
  • Plan development for subsequent PDSA cycles based on pilot findings
  • Identifying strategies for ongoing applied research

The work is expected to lead to:

  • Applied quality improvement plans (scope, timeline, methods) for each prioritized test
  • Reports on data and testing result briefs for each prioritized test
  • Presentations and other communication resources to help share findings and implications
  • A workshop or presentation for invited stakeholders (e.g., NIRN, InCK, FPG, and other colleagues)

Desired applicant experience:

  • Familiarity with child health, child serving systems, or early childhood education
  • Prefer experience working on quality improvement projects

Desired applicant experience skills:

  • Quantitative and/or qualitative data collection & analysis
  • Project coordination
  • Facilitation for reflection and analysis among diverse stakeholders
  • Production of reports that effectively summarize data and implications

The intern would need to be available for at least 20 hours per week (more hours are possible), for 8 weeks (more weeks are possible). The mentor for this opportunity is Oscar Fleming, from NIRN. Collaborators include Laura Louison, Nakenge Robertson (NIRN); Chaney Stokes, Nancy Madenyika, Sarah Allin, Jamila Freeman, and Barbara Young (InCK Consultant Implementation Team), and the InCK Leadership Team.

Development of media products to drive Triple P implementation best practices

The Impact Center at FPG's Media and Networking Core serves the Implementation Capacity for Triple P (ICTP) project and develops messages and tools to support local, regional, and state partners' efforts to implement and scale-up the Triple P – Positive Parenting Program system of interventions across North Carolina and South Carolina. These messages and tools share and reinforce implementation best practices.

The following deliverables are possible through this internship opportunity:

The intern will co-develop any of the following product(s), to be selected closer to the start date and in tandem with identified needs and intern interests:

  • A literature review on how media, social media, outreach, and/or engagement activities promotes individual, organizational, and network change to drive effective implementation;
  • One or more podcast(s) on identified implementation topics;
  • Short script(s) on social networks, community engagement, coalition engagement or other identified topic (FPG has a team of collaborators to assist with production);
  • 1-page tools that focus on technical skill development for local, regional, and state audiences (e.g., social media quick-starts);
  • Media toolkit for local health departments and other lead implementing agencies to reference for community outreach to parenting support resources (Covid-friendly)

The work is expected to lead to:

  • Intern knowledge and skill development around the intersection between media/social media/outreach/engagement and program scale-up;
  • Two or more media products with immediate application to Triple P scale-up in North Carolina
  • A presentation to the FPG Implementation Division on the results of this work.
  • An identified conference and/or paper proposal that can be completed with Impact Center at FPG colleagues following the internship period.

Desired applicant experience and skills:

  • Experience with producing media/social media content
  • Willingness to engage community experts in message development, tool creation and/or review
  • Commitment to developing accessible, equitable, and user-friendly products
  • Exposure to implementation science concepts, theories, and frameworks
  • Exposure to adult learning and communication frameworks helpful
  • Excellent writing skills
  • Ability to work well autonomously within a supportive mentoring environment

The intern would need to be available for 30 hours per week for 8-9 weeks (240 hours). The mentor for this opportunity is Sandy Diehl, from The Impact Center at FPG. The intern will work in collaboration with other Impact Center team members and community collaborators.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to be a graduate student at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill? No, graduate students from any accredited college or university are welcome to apply.

Do I need to have extensive implementation science experience? Applicants with introductory to moderate knowledge and experience of implementation science principles and practices are welcome to apply. A strong interest in learning more about implementation science is required.

What is the application deadline? Please apply by midnight, March 10, 2021.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, race, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or status as a protected veteran.