Improvement Scholars

Seed Grant Projects


Formerly known as the IHQI Seed Grant Program, the IHQI Improvement Scholars Program develops and mentors School of Medicine faculty and UNC Health Care System physicians to lead healthcare improvement. Participants are selected on the basis of scored project proposals led by the prospective Scholar. Selected Scholars and their project teams receive support, training, and coaching from IHQI faculty and staff. Please address questions to Laura Brown, IHQI Director of Operations,, 919-818-3558.

Learn more about funded projects.

Eligibility and Requirements

Projects are intended to improve clinical care and outcomes for a population of patients by implementing proven and/or expert-recommended strategies and approaches. Proposals to research new interventions for efficacy and/or effectiveness will not be funded. Improvement Scholars projects must be conducted within UNC Hospitals, Faculty Physician or Physician Network practices, and can be led by UNC faculty, staff, fellows, and residents.

Projects funded in fiscal year 2018 must align with one of the following initiatives:

  1. Mortality Reduction Program: Focus on Sepsis
  2. Primary Care Improvement Collaborative
  3. Care Transitions/Preventing Readmissions
  4. Outpatient Care Transitions
  5. Reducing Patient Harm
  6. UNC Children's Hospital Improvement Council (Contact , MD)

Project team members are required to complete Yellow Belt training prior to project start. Project sponsors are required to complete Blue Belt training prior to project start. Some project teams may be required to participate in Purple Belt training during the award period.

Project leads and project managers/coordinators will meet monthly with IHQI faculty coaches throughout the project period. All project teams will meet together at half-day IHQI-facilitated meeting three times during the funding period. Each project lead will attend and present results at the IHQI Seed Grant Symposium in May 2018.

Application Procedure

The Improvement Scholars Application is available here

Feel free to review this successful proposal from the 2014-2015 cycle: Stepped Approach to Preventive Services Outreach in Primary Care


Competitive Letter of Intent Due

November 28, 2016

Invitation to Apply

December 13, 2016

Proposals Due

February 10, 2017

Notification of Awards

March 6, 2017

Yellow & Blue Belt Training (as needed)

March – June 2017

Projects Start

July 1, 2017