Small Grants

2015 Student Research Grant Program

(Download grant information and Cover Sheet (.docx).)

General Information

The Montana Academy of Sciences is pleased to announce the 2015 Student Research Grant Program, which is designed to award research grants to undergraduate and graduate students in the State of Montana. This year there will be two categories of competitive grants with total funding of $7,000. The first category is for 4 grants up to $1,000.00 per award open to both graduate and undergraduate students. The second category ($3,000 total) is open to undergraduate students only, with award amounts up to $500.00. These competitive grants are intended to encourage and assist students with pursuing research projects at any Montana University, 4-year College, or Tribal College. Awards will be announced at the Annual Meeting (April 10-11, 2015 at Montana Tech in Butte) and will be disbursed for research during the summer and the next academic year. Students who receive funding are expected to present the results of their research at the 2016 MAS Annual Meeting.

It is the intent of MAS Program to disperse these grants to as many institutions and applicants as possible. Furthermore, because grants are funded in order of ranking, and because the MAS intends to disperse as much money from its grants pool as possible, grants requesting smaller dollar amounts may have a better chance of being funded than bigger grants. Awards will be made to the grants office or office of sponsored programs for disbursement of funds through the normal channels for extramural funding at each institution. No IDC will be paid as part of this program.

Eligibility

All undergraduate and graduate students involved in scientific research at the institutions above are eligible. Students need not be members of MAS.

Application Process and Deadlines

 To submit an application, complete our application cover sheet and write a brief summary of your proposed research (see below). Note that the cover sheet must be signed by a faculty member at the institution who will oversee the research project. The faculty member need not be a member of MAS at the time of application; however, if the grant is awarded, it is expected that the faculty member will join the Academy. The deadline for application is March 15, 2015.

 In addition to the cover sheet (see the last section in this RFA), attach a brief (no more than 3 pages) summary of your proposed research. We expect that the proposal WILL BE WRITTEN PRIMARILY BY THE STUDENT, with guidance, consultation and review by the faculty sponsor.

Please include the following in your research summary:

  •  Relevant background information for your proposal.
  • Clearly articulated research goals, hypothesis, and methodology.
  • A brief statement describing the potential significance of your research and how it connects to larger questions in your field.
  • A detailed budget showing exactly how you plan to use this grant to further your research. (The budget is not included in the 3-page limit for the proposal.)

Faculty mentors who sign the cover sheet must submit a letter of support via email (see below) from his or her institutional email account. This letter should address the student’s ability to conduct the research as well as the institution’s ability to support the research (space in a lab, consumables or other funding provided by the institution, etc.). Further, the letter should acknowledge that the applicants understand that successful grantees will be expected to present results from the project at the Annual Meeting of the MAS, which is held each April at Montana Tech in Butte, the following year. Faculty mentors who sponsor MAS funded research that is not presented will be ineligible to sponsor further projects for a period of three years (grant cycles).

Review and evaluation criteria for proposals will include: scientific merit; understandable approach and assessment; feasibility (can work be performed in time-frame) and implications (what is impact of work); and clarity of writing (format and style).

Send electronic copies of the cover sheet, the grant proposal, the budget and the letter of support via email to the chair of the MAS Grants Committee, Dr. James Berardinelli (jgb@montana.edu), by the deadline.

Receipt of the completed application will be confirmed by email. Applications will be reviewed by faculty in the appropriate disciplines, and funds will be dispersed near the end of the current spring semester. Funds may be used for research during the summer or during the following academic year. By the next grant cycle deadline, awardees are expected to turn in a report detailing exactly how the funds were spent (this report can be sent with a renewal grant application).

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