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FRHDA Program





The goal for the First Responder Health Disparity Awareness Program (FRHDA) is to expand upon the Health Disparities and Equity Service series by examining the first responder role, the challenges they face due to their high stress environment and how recent events covered in the news have negatively impacted the perception of first responder professions in many communities. This program is in collaboration with our first responder community here in Athens. Each participant is to actively identify a community need critically analzye the issue, conduct research, present their findings and facilitate a discussion with participating first responders.

This integrative service-learning program will increase student awareness and assist them in developing best practices when researching topics of interest related to health disparities and inclusion within first responder organizations. Students from all pre-professional areas are welcome to participate.



Service Program Requirements

  • Attend orientation session
  • Completion of the Clifton Strength Finder Assessment and 200-word essay on results.
  • Completion of two certificate modules (Am I Conducting Human Subjects Research?) as well as (Responsible Conduct of Research at UGA) from the PEP Portal.
  • Conducting research on topic of choice.
  • Creating a PowerPoint outlining results with 3 required feedback sessions with faciliator.
  • Presentation to UGA Police or Athens Technical College (different first responder departments).
  • Participation in a reflective dialogue session answering the following prompts:
    • What do you think was the most meaningful part of the program?
    • What is something you learned that surprised you or resonated with you?
    • Discuss the role of educating yourself on various issues and the role of self-reflection when faced with your own adversity or peers.


After successful completion of this program, students will earn Experiential Learning credit and receive a certificate from the Pre-Professional Advising Office.

Please note that you need to double check with your college that they have approved this activity for Experiential Learning Credit on If you do not see this listed, speak with your academic advisor to confirm whether or not this program will count for EL.

Please note, this is not an official UGA certificate that will appear on your transcript.

Click here for topics of discussion.



Through the combination of peer-reviewed research and community engagement we hope students will not only build, but also actively demonstrate a nuanced understanding of the societal norms and how we as humans interact to deter and become agents of change in our respective fields. Together, we hope to encourage others to do their part in dismantling systems of oppression.





Registration for the First Responder Health Disparity Awareness Program (FRHDA) will open August 26, 2024. First come, first served. There will be no waitlist.  Once the program reaches capacity, registration will be closed.