Frequently Asked Questions

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Q: What is the Minority Fellowship Program (MFP)?

A: Funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) through a training grant, the Minority Fellowship Program provides up to two, three, and five year Fellowships to ethnic and racial minority psychiatric nurses who are pursuing masters and doctoral degrees, including PhD, DNP, BS-to-PhD, doctoral study (PhD, DNP, and BS-to-PhD). The SAMHSA Fellowship only provides funding for individuals pursuing these graduate degrees. SAMHSA DOES NOT fund post-masters Psychiatric Mental Health certificate programs.

Q: What are the benefits of the MFP Fellowship?

A: The Fellowship offers an annual stipend for living expenses while enrolled in a graduate program full-time. Through the MFP's "Virtual University," the Fellowship provides mentoring, academic support, additional educational offerings in mental health and substance use disorders among ethnic and racial and indigenous populations, dissertation support, coaching in research design and data analysis, one-on-one counseling regarding quality improvement projects and clinical practice, networking opportunities, to include a 24/7 customized, secure online MFP/ANA Fellows Corner, monthly podcasts, and more.

Q: How much money does the MFP Fellowship award?

A: The annual stipend amount varies from year to year depending on Federal allocations to the Minority Fellowship Program. Currently, the maximum annual stipend for the MFP doctoral Fellow is $22,000 and $15,000 for masters Fellows paid directly to the Fellow’s bank account electronically in three installments. For the exact amount to be awarded in any given year, please email the Office of the MFP at

Q: How many Fellowships does the MFP award each year?

The number of MFP Fellowships awarded each year is determined by the funding provided by SAMHSA.

Q: What are the MFP Eligibility Requirements for the Doctoral Fellowship?

A: To be eligible to apply for the Fellowship, you must be an American citizen or permanent resident. You must be a member of an ethnic or racial minority group.  You must have a Master's Degree in Psychiatric/Mental Health Nursing, and you must be pursuing a Doctoral Degree in Psychiatric/Mental Health or Substance Abuse.  If do not have a Master's Degree or you have less than 9 credit hours related to Psychiatric/Mental Health or Substance Abuse, complete the application and the National Advisory Committee will review your application to determine eligibility. 

You must be enrolled as a full-time doctoral student in a fully accredited nursing program with at least one full year in the program remaining.

Please visit the Masters and Doctoral Eligibility pages for details about these requirements.

Q: Does the MFP fund post masters certificates?

A: No.

Q: Is financial need a requirement for eligibility?

A: No.

Q: If I receive funding from another source, may I also accept funding from MFP?

A: It depends on whether your other source of funding is federal or private.

  • If your other source of funding is federal, you are not eligible for the MFP Fellowship.
  • If you receive funding from the Nurse Faculty Loan Program, you are not eligible for the MFP Fellowship.
  • If you have received the MFP Fellowship, you may not accept funding from any other federal source.
  • If you already have private funding when you apply for the MFP Fellowship, the MFP Advisory Committee will consider on an individual basis whether to award you the MFP Fellowship. If your private funding includes a service obligation after you graduate, you may not be eligible for the MFP Fellowship.
  • If your source of funding—whether from a federal, state, or professional practice organization—requires your service after your academic training, you might have a conflict in fulfilling the MFP requirements.

Q: Do Fellows have to repay the MFP Fellowship funds they receive?

A: If they comply with all program requirements, Fellows do not have to repay the funding they receive. However, the ANA could require a Fellow to repay funds if the Fellow:

  • Is dismissed from school for academic or disciplinary reasons
  • Voluntarily ends his or her academic training before graduating from the degree program for which the fellowship was awarded,
  • Upon graduation, does not pursue a career providing direct service and leadership in mental health or substance abuse disorders

Q: Does the MFP select schools for the applicant?

A: No. However, if an applicant requests our help, MFP staff may make recommendations.

Q: How do I apply for the MFP Fellowship?

A: Complete the MFP Online Application and submit all required documents and forms by the deadline posted on the website, For detailed instructions, please visit the How to Apply page,, and review the Application Submission Instructions and additional resources, including an application tutorial and Tips for a Competitive Application.

Q: What happens if I do not disclose my Social Security Number?

A: Disclosure of the information sought in the application is voluntary; however, if you do not disclose information, including your Social Security Number, your application will be considered incomplete and your chances for selection will be diminished. MFP requires a Fellow's Social Security Number to process stipend award payments.

Q: Who selects the MFP Fellowship recipients?

A: Members of the MFP Advisory Committee select the MFP Fellowship recipients.

Q: What is the selection process?

A: Members of the MFP's National Advisory Committee review and score each application. Each application has three reviewers who score the application independently. The committee members meet to discuss each applications review and score in depth before recommending the appointment of the applicants whose application ranked among the top scores. This is followed by phase two of the application process which includes a virtual interview with the MFP/ANA Project Director, Academic Consultant, and selected MFP team and advisory committee members.

Final Appointment of Fellows are based on:

  • Scores on the applications and interviews
  • Intent to study and work in mental health and substance abuse prevention, treatment, and recovery
  • Certification as a Psychiatric Mental Health nurse, completion of nine psychiatric courses if you are not a psychiatric nurse with a concrete plan to complete the requirements for certification before graduation 
  • Whether their application have characteristics that inform the applicants commitment to a career serving ethnic and racial minority and underserved groups in mental health and substance use through practice, education, research, or health policy for a minimum of two-years after graduation.

Q: What are the funding priorities?

A: Among applicants who score in the competitive range, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders, American Indian, and Alaska Natives will receive priority.

Q: When will I learn whether I have been awarded an MFP Fellowship?

A: Appointments are traditionally announced based on the federal grant cycle. Currently, the grant year begins September 29; therefore, appointments will be announced by September 1, if not sooner. Selected applicants receive an email confirming their appointment followed by a more detailed appointment letter delineating the mandatory program requirements.  Fellows who are not selected also receive an email notification. Qualified Fellows can update their application package and reapply for the fellowship the following grant year.

Q: I have applied for a doctoral program, but I have not yet been accepted or enrolled. May I apply for the Fellowship?

A: An applicant’s enrollment in a graduate program may be pending at the time of application; however, if appointed as a Fellow during the review of the application, it will be contingent upon the applicant providing proof that they are enrolled in a full-time graduate nursing program.

Q: What happens after my application for the Fellowship is approved?

A: Your participation in the Fellowship becomes effective when you have returned all the required award acceptance documents to the Office of the MFP at ANA. The MFP will provide you with an orientation to the MFP mandatory program requirements and supportive counseling as needed throughout your graduate program and beyond.  Your major faculty advisor at your school/university will also be notified that you have received the Fellowship and asked to partner with the MFP/ANA to make sure the Fellow is progressing in their full-time psychiatric nursing program and meeting the SAMHSA mandatory program requirements.

Q: How does receiving the Fellowship affect my employment, benefits, or taxes?

A: Receipt of the stipend award does not mean that you are employed by the Federal Government or the American Nurses Association nor are you eligible for benefits available to Federal or ANA employees.  There may be a tax liability associated with the Fellowship stipend, so Fellows are encouraged to speak with a tax consultant to ensure they are handling the Fellowship award appropriately and meeting all IRS requirements. It is the Fellows responsibility to investigate any tax liabilities; ANA cannot be held responsible if Fellows misrepresent the MFP/ANA Fellowship award to the IRS. Each year, the ANA Finance Department forwards the 1099 form directly to the address on file for the Fellow.  Any questions regarding the 1099 form should be directed to the ANA Finance Department, and not the MFP/ANA program staff, at 301.628.5000.

Q: Can I decline the Fellowship?

A: Yes, you can decline the Fellowship without penalty. You must mail or fax a signed letter declining the Fellowship offer to the Office of the MFP at ANA. You may not decline the Fellowship by telephone declinations. Once you decline the Fellowship in writing, it will be awarded to another applicant.

Q: What is the duration of the MFP Fellowship?

Q: The Fellowship is awarded for up to two years for masters Fellows. Three-years for DNP and up to five years for PhD Fellows. Fellows in the PhD program who do not graduate within five years becomes ineligible to receive financial support.; however, the MFP will continue to provide academic and emotional support as an “Unfunded Fellow” until the Fellow graduates.

Q: What is the process for continuation of the Award?

A: Renewal of the Fellowship is not automatic. Fellows seeking continuing support must submit official transcripts and progress reports at the end of each quarter or semester. These progress reports must be signed by the Fellow and their academic advisor, verifying their successful academic progress.

Continuation of the Fellowship depends upon:

  • Whether SAMHSA makes funds available
  • The Fellow's continued eligibility for the program. The Fellow must be enrolled on a full-time basis in academic courses leading to the degree for which he or she was funded and must not be repeating course work.
  • The Fellow's compliance with program requirements and MFP's procedures for requesting continued support.

Q: When does the MFP discontinue support to a Fellow?

A: The MFP will discontinue support to a Fellow:

  • If the Fellow is on a leave of absence, for personal or medical reasons, which has been approved by their school/university
  • If the Fellow is not a full-time student
  • If the Fellow withdraws or is dismissed from their doctoral program
  • In the month the Fellow graduates and receives his or her doctorate 

Q: Are there opportunities for post-doctoral Fellowships?

A: Post-doctoral fellowships are dependent upon whether SAMHSA funding is available. For information about post-doctoral Fellowships, please contact the Office of the MFP at the ANA.

Q: What is the number of credits required to be considered full–time?

A: The credits required to be considered full-time is determined by the academic institution where you are currently or planning to matriculate; this status is typically designated by credit hours or a pre-determined number of courses.

Q: Can applicants who are not in nursing programs apply?

A: Though our program is focused on supporting nurses looking to provide direct care across the lifespan, you may want to look into other guilds, particularly those in the fields of psychology, social work, professional counseling, and marriage and family therapy.

The links are as follows:

Q: Can I have my transcript mailed or can I scan and attach it to the applications?

A: You may scan and submit your transcript with your application.

Q: Are the professional development trainings the only requirement throughout the year?

A: It is primarily your participation in the professional development and training opportunities that is required. No additional project or paper is needed, as this program is meant to complement your current studies.

Q: For the letters of recommendation, can they be from academic colleagues or from faculty members?

A: The recommendations should be from faculty members under whom you have studied or worked.

Q: What does the pre-populated travel amount found on each Fellows' PHS2271 Statement of Training cover?

A:  The pre-populated travel amount on each Fellows' PHS2271 Statement of Training Appointment form is the estimated cost for each MFP/ANA Fellow’s additional behavioral health and career development educational offering. These monies are not to be used at the discretion of the Fellow, but are applied to offset the cost of each Fellow’s participation in the MFP/ANA Intensive Training Institute (ITI), including roundtrip air fare; lodging, plus taxes, resort fee, 5 nights stay, 3 meals per day x 5 days; opening reception food; box lunches-to-go; local round trip ground transportation; and the round trip ground transportation to the host cities multiple community engagement activities. These are just a few of the costs associated with MFP/ANA Fellow’s in-person learning experience during the MFP/ANA ITI.

Additionally, during the global pandemic health crisis in 2020, the MFP/ANA pivoted to a virtual infrastructure that included a customized  MFP/ANA branded virtual platform to host the Intensive Training Institutes. The cost of each MFP/ANA Fellow’s in-person expense is applied toward the virtual educational offering to help offset the cost of the customized virtual platform, keynote speakers, support by the American Nurses Association Meetings Department and other programming and technical support required to host a virtual meeting.