Category 2(a): College and Academic Unit Proposals (One-year, Non-recurring Funding)

Non-recurring funding is available for college or academic unit requests that are supported by the college or academic units. Proposals should should focus on effecting long-term change in the requesting unit and must include written indication of support by the dean, director, chair, or relevant administrator within the college or academic unit for creating inclusive excellence at MSU. Other funds are available to support additional diversity and inclusion projects. Multiyear funding is not generally available, but may be considered where appropriate.

Purpose and Goals

The goal to create inclusive excellence at MSU can be accomplished by colleges working both more collaboratively and intensely. Just as research, scholarship, and teaching cut across disciplines and colleges, so too must programs for enhancing inclusiveness for faculty, staff, and students.

Projects that enhance diversity within departments and schools, collaboratively within colleges and between colleges are acceptable proposals and are encouraged. In addition to increased collaboration, colleges will need to establish performance goals and mechanisms for evaluating performance against goals. Identifying the needs of a diverse set of students, staff, and faculty, and executing programs to meet those needs, will also require increased investments by colleges and the university.

Proposal Format

Proposals supported by the college as evidenced by written confirmation of support from the dean(s), or department chair(s)/director(s), or relevant administrator within the college(s) or academic unit(s), should focus on effecting long-term change in the requesting unit(s). Proposals should not exceed more than six pages of narrative. The following should be included to be considered:

  1. A completed Creating Inclusive Excellence Funding Request Contact Sheet.
  2. Description of the Project: Provide no more than three pages of narrative to describe the activities included in the proposed project or program. The description should include discussion of how any funds requested will support activities and what outcomes are expected from those activities.
  3. Evaluation of the project: Provide no more than two pages of narrative on how the effects of the project will be measured. Identify measures or processes that will provide feedback to the requesting unit during the implementation of the project to solve any problems that arise and measures that demonstrate that anticipated outcomes have been achieved in whole, part, or not at all. Learning what has not worked can be of equal importance to documenting success.
  4. Sustainability: The sustainability of the project or program should be discussed in the proposal. Provide no more than one page of narrative describing how the project or program will be sustained and integrated into the regular operations/activities of the requesting units. Proposals for ad hoc projects or programs can also be submitted; however, the expectation is that non-recurring funding should lead to ongoing, recurring support by the unit.
  5. Budget: Provide a one-page summary of requested funds. Funds cannot be used for recurring expenses, space alterations, or capital outlay. Include a description of how the requested funds support the project if not already identified in the project description.
  6. Personnel: Provide a list of those persons responsible for managing and carrying out the project, including a description of specific project duties.

Review Criteria

  1. Significance: Does the proposed project address a problem or opportunity that will make a measurable improvement in the climate for diversity in the college(s) and university? If the aims of the program are achieved, how will “best practice knowledge” be enhanced in the college(s) and university? Will the program act as a model for other units in the university or in higher education generally?
  2. Collaboration: Does the proposed project involve collaboration within a college and with other colleges or other support units (e.g., Student Services, Residence Life, University Undergraduate Division, etc.)? Whether or not the proposed project is targeted at only one college, how will its results be disseminated or shared with other units? Collaboration can be manifested in relationships with other educational institutions, communities and other entities.
  3. Outcomes: What effect is the proposed project intended to have on the climate for diversity and inclusiveness? Is it likely to achieve these effects?
  4. Sustainability: Are there clear and attainable plans for sustaining the project beyond the funding provided? Does the proposal identify specific internal funds or resources for continuing the project, if it meets the stated outcomes? If not, the proposal should clearly indicate that the project or program is intended to be ad hoc with no plans for sustainability beyond the proposed project or program.
  5. Evaluation: Does the proposal identify measures for feedback during implementation and a mechanism for solving any problems confronted during implementation? Are the proposed outcomes adequately and completely assessed by the identified performance measures?
  6. Administrator Endorsement: Provide a letter or other indication of support from the dean(s), or department chair(s)/director(s), or relevant administer(s) of the college(s) or academic unit.

Available Funds

It is anticipated that between three to five awards will be made each cycle. Awards will range from $20,000–$35,000. No matching funds are required, but contribution of resources to sustain the program in the future is expected. At this time, we do not plan on offering multi-year grants, but would entertain exceptional proposals that request such funding arrangements. Grants will be awarded on a fiscal year basis. Individuals or groups that find themselves with unique opportunities outside of the regular submission cycle may apply for funds, but must include a rationale for submission outside of the expected timeline.

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