Driven to Discover Grants

U of M Building at the State FairThe Driven to Discover Community Health Research Grants Program supports pilot research and evaluation projects that address important Minnesota human health issues and enable Minnesota State Fair attendees to participate.

Studies funded through this mechanism enroll and collect data from research participants at the Minnesota State Fair using the new Driven to Discover research building. This dedicated research facility offers university and community researchers access to approximately 1.8 million potential participants each year, and will be a unique resource for carrying out population-based research.

Program overview

  • LOIs will be accepted from UMN or community investigators or UMN/community organization collaborations.
  • Full proposals must include a UMN investigator.
  • CTSI staff will be available to help identify either University or community partners for any proposed initiative.
  • University of Minnesota students conducting research projects are encouraged to apply.
  • Eligible students will need to provide a name and signature of their academic advisor.
  • Junior investigators are encouraged to apply. 

Application details

This program is not currently accepting applications.



Nicole Basta, PhD, MPhil, School of Public Health, Division of Epidemiology and Community Health, in partnership with the Department of Philosophy

Project Title: What Have You HEARD about the HERD?  Vaccine Uptake and Herd Immunity in Minnesota

Corey McGee, PhD, MS, OTR/L, CHT, Program in Occupational Therapy, Center for Allied Health Programs, in partnership with the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Program, Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Department of Orthopaedics

Project Title: Intrinsic Hand Strength in Adults: Age and Gender Stratified Norms using a Novel Measurement Device

Shalini Kulasingam, PhD, and Erinn Sanstead, MPH, School of Public Health, Division of Epidemiology and Community Health, in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Health

Project Title: A Pilot Seroprevalence Study of Pertussis in Minnesota

Erin Dodd, MD Candidate, and Ingrid Polcari, MD, Medical School, Department of Dermatology and Department of Pediatrics

Project Title: Photoprotection in Children: Assessing Parental Knowledge, Perceptions and Behaviors


Teri Burgess-Champoux, PhD, RD, LD, Department of Food Science and Nutrition

Project Title: Assessment of Parental Knowledge, Attitudes and Behaviors Associated with Community Garden Experiences for Young Children

Corjena Cheung, PhD, RN, School of Nursing, in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Health, Division of Health Promotion and Chronic Disease

Project Title: Wise and Well: Lifestyle Wellness Behaviors among Older Adults

Daniel Gallaher, PhD, Department of Food Science and Nutrition, in partnership with the University of Hawaii at Manoa

Project Title: Iron Deficiency and Vitamin D Deficiency in Female State Fair Attendees

Suma Jacob, MD, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, in partnership with the College of Education and Human Development and the Department of Pediatrics

Project Title: Utilizing Eye-Tracking to Study the Normative Trajectory of Social Information Processing

Pamela Schreiner, PhD, School of Public Health, Division of Epidemiology & Community Health and the Center to Study Human-Animal Relationships and Environments

Project Title: Assessing Human-Animal Interactions and Human Health across Multiple Environments

Heather Zierhut, PhD, MS, CGC, College of Biological Sciences, Graduate Studies in Genetic Counseling, in partnership with the Department of Educational Psychology

Project Title: Beyond the Canaries in the Coal Mine: What Does the Public Want to Know from Whole Genome Sequencing?


Sarah Beehler, PhD, Department of Biobehavioral Health & Population Sciences (Duluth), in partnership with the Medical School Department of Psychiatry and the Minneapolis Veterans Administration Medical Center

Project Title: Assessing Supportive Resources of Veterans and Their Families in Greater Minnesota

Jayne Fulkerson, PhD, School of Nursing, in partnership with the Extension Center for Family Development

Project Title: Childhood Obesity Prevention in Rural Minnesota Communities

Traci Mann, PhD, Department of Psychology

Project Title: Self-Regulation of Eating in an Unstructured Eating Environment

Sarah Schellinger, Department of Speech Language and Hearing Science, in partnership with the Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance

Project Title: The Role of Education on Public Perceptions of Traumatic Brain Injury

Karl Self, MBA, DDS, School of Dentistry, in partnership with the Minnesota Dental Therapy Association

Project Title: Minnesotans' Awareness and Attitudes about Dental Therapists as a Function of Health Literacy and Caries Risk