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Guidelines and General Background

The Departmental Diversity Initiatives Mini-Grant seeks to encourage faculty to promote diversity through the development of new academic and student affairs initiatives. Projects will involve students who stimulate departmental colleagues to confront a problem or issue of diversity within the context of that department's particular needs. Many faculty and staff have had ideas about projects worth funding that would foster greater understanding of diversity issues as they pertain to fields of academic inquiry and student development had there been sufficient resources.

The specific nature of the Departmental Diversity Initiatives should be determined by departmental needs. Two or more departments may collaborate and share a mini-grant. They may include curricular innovations, student development initiatives, faculty development, or student projects. While the review committee encourages departments to range as freely and as imaginatively as possible in framing proposals, there are some guidelines they should bear in mind. Funds cannot be used to supplement or replace employee/student salaries or to subsidize fellowship related costs.  Only departments or programs are eligible to submit applications and only one individual faculty or staff member should be identified as the project coordinator.  Note: Students cannot be appointed as the project coordinator, as this individual will be the designated account signatory for expenditures of allocated funds if the grant application is approved.

Applications will be reviewed by a Diversity Mini-Grant Review Committee comprised of faculty, staff and student representation. Selections are made based on the potential of the project to ensure that the University continues to provide invaluable educational experiences for today’s diverse student body.  Preference will be given to proposals that promote awareness, skills, and knowledge about issues related to race, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, abilities, age and/or religion.  Drawing on a total pool of $30,000, the award amount will be determined by the number of grants selected and approved for funding.  Each Mini-Grant recipient will be recognized at the Annual Awards Dinner. 

Note:  If a grant is submitted by a faculty member, the application must be signed by the chairperson.  If submitted by the chairperson, it must be signed by the dean.  If submitted by a staff member, it must be signed by the highest level department administrator.

The application form includes questions requesting the following information (ALL QUESTIONS MUST BE ANSWERED):

  1. A description of the project, including the problem/issue to be addressed and SMART implementation plan
  2. An evaluation plan, including indicators and data collection methods
  3. Plans for department members and students involvement (both required)
  4. Project connections to the University’s Plan for Equity, Inclusion and Diversity
  5. Personal philosophy statement on work around diversity
  6. A proposed budget covering project costs

View the Proposal/Evaluation Plan Guidelines document for guidance.  Please be aware that all budget proposals must follow NYS Procurement Guidelines. Please see the Procurement Office website for any questions or concerns.

Each successful applicant must submit a report to the President upon completion of the initiative. The report should evaluate the effectiveness of the funded project and outline all project expenses. The report will be due no later than June 30th.