Dr. Elaine Drew (standing) Kevin Huo, Fiona Fadum and Jason Kells (L-R)
Faculty, research staff, staff, and graduate students from all UAF-affiliated campuses are invited to apply for an URSA Mentor Award of up to $6,000. This award is an opportunity for mentors to receive funding to engage undergraduate students on their current research and creative projects. Awarded proposals will clearly describe a project with a distinguished mentoring plan for undergraduate students involved.
- The funding limit for this RFP is $6,000
- Applicants are required to identify at least one eligible undergraduate student upon awarding.
- Funds may be used towards an undergraduate student fellowship, undergraduate student tuition (up to 4 credits for a course related to the project), travel to a fieldwork location, supplies, or services.
JUL31Applications close September 10 at 11:59pm.
OCT02Sent to awardees via the email listed in the application.
JUN30Find your reflection form link on the URSA Forms page
- Faculty, post-doctoral researchers, graduate students, and staff may apply and serve as URSA mentors. Regardless of applicant status, the project must support undergraduate learning.
- Applicants may only receive an URSA Mentor Award two out of every three years. This policy allows for a greater number of students to receive awards with limited URSA funds.
- Applicants may only submit one proposal for each request for proposal (RFP).
Undergraduate Student Eligibility:
- Must be a Degree-seeking undergraduate student
Students of any year of study, from any UAF-affiliated campus, working toward an Occupational Endorsement, Certificate, Associate's Degree or Bachelor's Degree in any discipline are eligible to apply for and participate in CEL projects. Graduated undergraduate students are not eligible to apply.
Students must be enrolled in at least 3 credits at any UAF-affiliated campus for the funded semester.
- GPA of 2.3 or higher
Students with a GPA lower than 2.3 are not eligible.
- Students that have received URSA Student Project Award funding in the same academic year are not eligible for Mentor Award funding.
- Students that have received full funding from another UAF program for the same project are not eligible for additional funding from URSA (for example BLaST, INBRE, EPSCOR, Alaska Space Grant Program, amongst others) .
- Mentor applicants must have at least one eligible undergraduate project participant identified prior to awarding.
- Awarded funds must be spent by June 15th of the awarded fiscal year.
- Awardees (NOT the students) must complete a Reflection Form by the end of the award period.
- Final products to be submitted with the reflection form include:
- A poster representing your project (completed by the students involved)
- A 2-3 min recording of your poster presentation (completed by the students involved)
- 2-3 high resolution pictures (one of which features the mentor working with undergraduate students)
- Completion of an approved URSA-outreach activity (**The awardee's outreach choice must be discussed with and confirmed by the URSA Coordinator
prior to completion.) :
- Create an URSA Outreach Video for YouTube (2-3 minutes).
- Create a Poster Presentation Video for YouTube (2-3 minutes).
- Complete a mid-award blog post/ student spotlight for the URSA website (Q & A format).
- Provide 2 mid-award photos and updates for URSA's Social Media pages (Facebook & Instagram).
- Attend an URSA Event as a Student Ambassador (Event Example: URSA RFP Open House, URSA Seminars, UAF Tabling Event, etc.).
- Host an event related to your project (i.e. public presentation, art exhibition, public performance, workshop, tour of project site for prospective students, etc.)
- Students involved in the Mentor Award project must present their results at URSA's Research & Creative Activity Day in April of that academic year.
Fellowship payments may be used to pay the awarded student a stipend.
Students must be degree-seeking and registered for per the award eligibility requirements.
Fellowships are paid by UA direct deposit. The fellowship is taxable and students will be responsible for payment of any taxes owed.
For those currently holding campus employment: In order to receive a fellowship, campus employment tasks and URSA Project tasks must not overlap. Fellowship eligibility will be determined by a final HR review of the student employment and URSA Project descriptions. If you have concerns, please contact the URSA Office.
To support the undergraduate research project or creative activities. Funded supplies will remain property of the awardee's UAF Department. For this reason, personal supplies (i.e. personal technology, clothes, etc.) are considered ineligible expenses and their inclusion may impact an application’s eligibility for review.
- UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT TRAVEL
To exclusively support undergraduate student travel needs associated with the funded research or creative scholarship project.
*Travel to attend a conference is NOT eligible for funding through a Mentor Award. Students wishing to PRESENT, COMPETE, PERFORM at an event must submit a Travel Award application.*
- REGISTRATION FEES
For undergraduate student(s) to attend a virtual conference/workshop or other professional meeting.
For any given round of URSA funding, 25–70 proposals are submitted.
With limited funding we award between 8 and 12 proposals in each call. The competition is high.
- When an application period ends, proposals are distributed anonymously and randomly
to four members of the URSA Faculty Review Board. These faculty members come from
all disciplines in the arts/humanities/social sciences and natural/life and engineering
sciences. One of the reasons that we request that students write their proposal for
a broad audience is because there is a high probability that several of their reviewers
will not be in a similar discipline as the proposal. Please see the Scoring Criteria
section for more information regarding URSA’s review processes.
- The reviewers evaluate and score the proposals and provide comments using an established
- URSA funds submitted proposals in ranked order until the allotted amount of funding is distributed.
Evaluations are made by a minimum of four faculty members on the URSA Faculty Review Board using the scoring criteria detailed below.
Each of the following are evaluated on a scale from 1 (high/exemplary) to 5 (low/insufficient):
- Is the purpose of the proposed expenditure...
- To support/create a multi-student, repeating, research opportunity for undergraduates
- To support/create a one-time multiple student research opportunity for undergraduates
- To support one student, one time
- Not clearly expressed
- The explanation of the significance of the proposed project/travel
- The potential for the proposed project or travel to make a scholarly contribution to an academic discipline
- The potential for the proposed project or travel to effect (bring about) an improvement in higher education at UAF and beyond
- The written quality (mechanics and writing) of the proposal
- The applicant articulates clear goals and/or expected student learning outcomes of the project or travel.
- The applicant, through articulate writing and inclusion of detail, makes a compelling case for funding the project or travel.
- The applicant articulates a clear mentoring plan.
- The applicant proposes an appropriate budget for the proposed project.
Get a head start on your project prosopal today! Click here to download the Request for Proposal (RFP) questions for the current award cycle.