Your ideas are worth spreading (and funding)!

It's midterm season and that means you're probably spending countless hours of your precious youth reading, studying, and re-reading your textbooks/notes/lecture slides in a desperate effort to get that all-important "A" on your first bout of midterms/assignments. While this time of the year is not super-conducive in fostering your own ideas and imaginations (as you are essentially studying other people's material and works, contributing what you can where you can) I'm here to tell you to not let your good ideas go to waste! The university has a number of special funds set up to enable students to see their ideas become realized. The deadline for a few of these funds is fast approaching and because I'm a nice guy I've decided to group them all together in this post so you can readily view all your funding options - be it for an event you want to hold here at the university or a particular bit of research you hope to undertake. I'm talking about the Dean's Student Initiatives Fund, Good Ideas FundStudent Initiative Fund, and the Undergraduate Research Fund! These funds exist to get money into your hands and compliment both social/event-driven and academic ideas! I'll post some brief information on each fund below which details what each fund entails and I highly encourage you to do some further research if any of the funds appeal to you! Many Colleges also have funds set up for student proposals if your idea is more localized on that level.

Nothing says "good idea" like a few hundred bucks to back it up!

--- Dean's Student Initiatives Fund Award: up to $1000 Deadline to apply: November 1 "The Dean’s Student Initiatives Fund has been established to provide financial support for student initiatives that aspire to create dialogue and foster a greater sense of community through special events, lectures, or other forms of community engagement." Previously funded projects include: Oxfam U of T's Hunger Banquet, a reading series hosed by the Canadian Literature Group, an exhibition of Haitian art as part of the Caribbean Studies Student Symposium, the North East Linguistics Society conference, and the Caribbean Studies Student Academic Conference on the Caribbean diaspora. For more information on the Dean's Student Initiatives Fund click here! For more information on previously funded projects click here. --- Good Ideas Fund Award: up to $1000 Deadline to apply: rolling; next deadline on November 5 "Your good ideas help enhance student life. Tell us about a film screening, conference, exhibit, performance, or other activity and you could be awarded up to $1000 towards making it happen." For more information on the Good Ideas Fund click here! --- Student Initiative Fund  Award: up to $5000 Deadline to apply: N/A (students can apply at any time of the year) "The Student Initiative Fund (SIF) offers financial support to projects that enhance the student experience and foster a sense of community at the University of Toronto." For more information on the Student Initiative Fund click here! --- Undergraduate Research Fund Award: varies Deadline to apply: November 15 "The Undergraduate Research Fund fosters research experience at the undergraduate level by providing students with an opportunity to develop a research project of their own, for which there is no other available funding. The Fund is to be used for research initiated by students, related to their degree, and supervised by a faculty member either through a regular course, an independent study, a research essay, or other academic project. For example, students may want to explore in more depth ideas that emerged in a 299Y course, or to further develop some implications of the research they have done in a seminar, or to undertake additional research required to turn a final essay into a publication (e.g., journal article)." Previously successful proposals were submitted by:
  • Annette Gagliano, a human biology major also studying the environment and French, looked at the ways teaching labs can promote more environmentally efficient practices. Gagliano worked with Beth Savan of the Centre for the Environment and U of T’s Sustainability Office.
  • Leah Girardo, a women and gender and equity studies student, investigated the connection of modern printmaking to the Canadian social justice movement. Girardo worked with Judith Taylor of sociology and women and gender studies.
  • Nitin Kapadia, who’s working towards a double major in physics and microbiology, investigated how to minimize tissue damage in laser surgery. Kapadia  worked with Robin Marjoribanks of physics.
For more information on the Undergraduate Research Fund click here! For more information on the successful proposals click here.
- Matteo

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