Mini-Grant Competition Announcement

2009 – 2010 MINIGRANT COMPETITION ANNOUNCEMENT

Introduction:
The Mississippi Space Grant Consortium is seeking proposals supporting research, public outreach, and educational activities in the areas of mathematics, science, technology, and engineering.  Of special interest for this competition are proposals from non-Space Grant institutions and organizations including other educational institutions, astronomical associations, student organizations, planetariums and aquariums.

Activities that generally fall into the above categories include workshops, public lectures, seminars, student research activities, conferences, scholarships, new course development, and mentoring programs.

Background Information:
The National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program was founded in 1989 by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to establish a network of universities with programs in aeronautics and other space-related fields, and to encourage recruitment and training of talented students, especially women and minorities, who will become professionals in the space sciences.

The NASA/Mississippi Space Grant Consortium, established in 1991, is a statewide, non profit organization of institutions of higher learning coordinated by the Mississippi Research Consortium and supported by NASA and the member institutions.  The goals are to: 1.)  promote a strong science, mathematics, and technology base at precollege, undergraduate, and graduate levels in the region's educational institutions; 2.) increase the number of trained professionals in space related fields, particularly those from groups traditionally underrepresented in the fields; and 3.) interface with and expand existing networks of institutions of higher learning, informal education vehicles (planetariums, museums, aquariums, etc.), industry, and federal and state agencies involved in space related activities. 

The NASA/Mississippi Space Grant Consortium includes the following educational institutions:  The University of Mississippi, Jackson State University, The University of Southern Mississippi, Mississippi State University, Alcorn State University, Delta State University, Mississippi University for Women, Mississippi Valley State University, Itawamba Community College, Pearl River Community College, Northeast Community College, Coahoma Community College, Mississippi Delta Community College, Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, Meridian Community College, and Hinds Community College - Utica Campus.

MS Space Grant affiliates sponsor a variety of academic year programs and conferences, teacher training workshops, fellowships for graduate students, scholarships for undergraduate students, field trips, interactive distance learning programs, student mini-camps, faculty development activities, lecture series, and minigrants.  Each campus program is guided by a faculty campus coordinator and a team of faculty mentors.

Program diversity and collaboration characterize the Consortium.  The programs sponsored by each academic affiliate address regional needs and opportunities that result in effective and diverse activities.  The Space Grant’s strong network of communication and active collaboration propel our local successes into a statewide system of sustained commitment to Space Grant goals for education, research, and public service.  Of special importance to Space Grant members is the percentage of women and minorities who participate in Space Grant activities across all programs.

Proposal Content and Length:

  • Application Form
  • Abstract
  • Project Description (including a brief organization description, past programmatic successes, current project goals and objectives, target audience and disciplines, projected time line, personnel involved, and expected outcomes)  
  • Evaluation Mechanisms (Proposals should describe an assessment plan including an appropriate evaluation approach to document outcomes and demonstrate progress toward achieving objectives of the proposed activities. SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely) goals should be expressed in objective, quantifiable, and measurable forms.
  • Budget and Budget Justification
    The proposal (Abstract, Project Description and Evaluation Mechanisms) should not exceed 5 double-spaced typed pages, or less than 12-point font.  The application form, budget, and budget justification are required, but are considered in addition to the five pages.

Reporting:
At the conclusion of the project (expected end date: June 30, 2009), you will be required to submit a final report.  The form that you should use for the final report will be included in the award subcontract.  See Appendix II for an example of the information you will be required to submit.

Project Period:
July 1, 2009- June 30, 2010.

Funding: 
Awards range from $500 - $2,500.  Grant awards will be made by the Mississippi Space Grant Consortium based on evaluations of the proposals and the availability of funds. Some projects may receive only partial funding, in which case there may be a need to modify projects.  Decisions will be made on or before July 1, 2009

Budget/Project Revisions:
Once funded, major changes in spending/budget categories or scope of work must be approved by the Mississippi Space Grant Consortium.

Allowed Costs:
Programmatic costs such as domestic travel, supplies, services, personnel, scholarships, and fellowships are allowed.  While domestic travel is allowed, proposals should result in product-focused activities such as workshops, student research activities, public lectures and mentoring programs.  Equipment, foreign travel and indirect costs (facilities and administration) are not allowed; however, these can be shown as matching amounts.

Matching Requirement:
While matching is not required for this proposal, a non-federal cost sharing match of one-to-one is strongly encouraged.  Any match or cost sharing that can be shown will be reviewed favorably as a commitment to the success of the project.  Matching may be cash or in-kind contributions. 

Deadline:
Proposals and supporting documents must be received no later than June 1, 2009.

Proposal Review and Evaluation:
Each proposal will be reviewed and evaluated independently.  The criteria shown in Appendix I: Evaluation Criteria will be used by reviewers in evaluating the proposals.  

Number of copies:
Three (original and two copies).

Where to Submit:
Please mail proposals to:
Margaret W. Schaff, NASA Project Coordinator
Mississippi NASA Space Grant Consortium
308 Vardaman Hall
PO Box 1848
University, MS 38677-1848

Download Application Form Here


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