Emerging Issues Grants

We are currently accepting applications on a rolling basis.

Emerging issues are defined as health risks that are new or have rapidly expanding impact in the immediate or near future. The Emerging Issues Grant Program is designed to provide a structure to identify issues of high priority for regional producers and the flexibility for HICAHS to respond rapidly. All funds awarded through the emerging issues grant program should be used to address priorities identified by HICAHS stakeholders including producers, extension agents, the HICAHS External Advisory Board, and other agriculture and forestry partners in the region. Projects and use of funds may vary depending on the need and availability. See the request for applications for more information.


Current “Emerging Issues” Priorities 2023

Proposed projects should address at least one of the priorities listed below:

  • Mental health
  • Substance abuse/misuse
  • Extreme weather/climate change, particularly heat stress/heat illness prevention, wildfire smoke, and post-burn ash inhalation
  • Distracted machinery operation
  • Labor issues, particularly labor shortages and high turnover
  • Musculoskeletal disorders
  • Robotics
  • Silica exposures
  • Hearing conservation
  • Land-based fish production/aquaculture
  • Issues related to youth on the farm
  • Zoonotic diseases, including COVID-19
  • Connections between animal, environmental, and human health
Additional topics will be considered, given justification for the topic as an emerging issue in the HICAHS region.


Recently Funded Projects

  • Biomarkers for Environmental Chemical and Pollutant Mixtures in Agricultural Communities PI: Sheryl Magzamen, Colorado State University 
  • Design and Utilization of a Virtual Reality training tool on appropriate PPE use among dairy workers and producers impacting farm biosecurity and biosafety – PI: Sangeeta Rao, Colorado State University
  • Using Whole Genome Sequencing to Assess the Risk of Antimicrobial Resistance Among Colorado Agricultural Workers – PI: Michael Haverkate, Colorado School of Public Health
  • Project Protect Food Systems Workers: Project Protect Promotora Network in Rural Colorado – PI: Hunter Knapp, Project Protect Food System Workers
  • Piloting a regional respiratory protection education and fit testing model for pesticide applicators in Colorado’s marijuana industry – PI: Annyce Mayer, National Jewish Health System
  • Assessing the 3D facial anthropometrics of LatinX workers – PI: John Rosecrance, with student Co-I Kayna Hobbs, Colorado State University
  • Overcoming Dairy employee’s hesitancy to the COVID-19 vaccine: using outreach, education, media and community – PI: Maristela Rovai, South Dakota State University
  • Understanding the mental health safety nets for foreign-born farmworkers in Colorado and Utah – PI: Annie Keeney, Colorado State University


Application Instructions

Applicants should submit a short (no more than 2 pages) proposal describing:

  • The problem and the associated burden (risk, population affected)
  • Project objectives
  • Approach, including a detailed plan on how the study will be completed within the proposed timeframe
  • Likely outcome or result
  • Potential impact
  • Brief budget
  • Letter(s) of Support

Submit your application electronically in a single PDF file to: hicahs@colostate.edu. We will conduct rolling rapid reviews of proposals and can provide a more specific decision timeline when an application is submitted.


Morgan Valley Headshot
Morgan Valley, PhD

Emerging Issues Program Lead, Center Coordinator