The Center has established a fund to assist eligible faculty and students in pursuing scholarly research projects that will examine the needs and opportunities of Pennsylvania's nearly 3.4 million residents through a public policy lens. Research must be conducted under the supervision of a qualified faculty member.
The Center anticipates granting four to six awards of up to $2,500 per submission for the two upcoming grant cycles noted below.
The Center is seeking research and scholarship that meet the following criteria:
1. All projects must show a clear relationship to one or more of the Center's mandated research areas, which include: people and communities, development, local government finance and administration, services, natural resources and the environment, educational outreach, values and social change, agriculture, and health and welfare concerns.
2. All projects must include a public policy focus that could pertain to state, local, or federal governments, and/or other public service organizations serving the Commonwealth.
Projects may be completed as a class project that incorporates -based learning (e.g., a research methods class that engages in a group project), an undergraduate or graduate student thesis project with significant faculty engagement, or related cooperative research experiences between faculty and students.
The maximum award is $2,500. All grant awards will be awarded to the university. The university is responsible for the distribution of funds. The Center does not pay for indirect costs.
Undergraduate and graduate students must work through a qualified faculty member at one or more of the following universities:
Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE)
All campuses of The Pennsylvania State University
Regional campuses of the University of Pittsburgh
For the purposes of this program, the qualified faculty member will be considered the primary investigator/project director. Students will be considered co-investigators.
University tuition and/or fees
Food and/or drink
Membership in organizations
Attendance and/or participation at conferences
Equipment available through sponsoring university
Research-related travel outside of Pennsylvania
All research must be completed within six months after the start of the project contract, with a required progress report three months into the project.
All students must be supervised by a qualified university faculty representative. This faculty representative is considered the primary investigator for the purpose of the grant award. The faculty supervisor is responsible for:
Submitting a letter of support with the project application. The letter must be submitted on official university letterhead.
Co-signing a cooperative agreement between the Center for Pennsylvania, the student(s), and the university.
Overseeing all aspects of student work.
Ensuring that the project complies with university research policies (including obtaining IRB approval where necessary).
Timely submission of the progress report and final product to the Center.
All project teams must submit a report to the Center for Pennsylvania. In addition, all data, survey instruments, or other relevant information and materials must be submitted to the Center at the conclusion of the project. All reports will become property of the Center for Pennsylvania after completion and will be considered public domain (teams that would like to request a waiver to this rule should include an explanation in the application-e.g., graduate students seeking dissertation publication).
A report may take the form of any of the following, and should be specified in the grant application:
1. A manuscript of not less than 15 double-spaced pages (and no more than 25 pages) that complies with the Center's style guidelines (including all references, tables, etc.).
2. A research poster that is accompanied by an in-person presentation.
3. A PowerPoint (or similar medium) that is accompanied by an in-person presentation or webinar.
Presentation details such as format and dates and/or locations will be determined at the time the contract is awarded.
The deadline for the Student Micro Grant Program is:
For winter/spring 2023 research, proposal applications will be due October 1, 2022. Award recipients will be notified by November 1, 2022.
Center staff will review all proposals and all funding decisions will be based on:
Completeness of application
Soundness of the methodology
Relevance of the policy implications