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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Requesting and Dispersing Money

What do I do if I don’t know the exact amount of my expenses?

Please do not give us a range for your grant request (such as “$140-$160 dollars”); we will only award you the lower value if you do. Simply round up your approximation -  it is better to overestimate your budget then underestimate.

Can I request more money than the grant’s maximum value?

No. We will only grant up to the required amount of funds (for instance, we will not grant more than $300 for the Small Project Grant with Leadership for Peace).

What goods or services can I not request funding from a BLI Grant for?

Because of logistical complications with the University, we are not able to fund requests for gift cards and other objects that are specifically distributed to individuals as a ‘gift’, especially cash payments or gift cards. If you have any further questions about what constitutes a gift, talk to Christopher Pumford at bli-progasst9@umich.edu.

How can I collect my grant reward?

Rewards can be received in two ways: 1) Submitting receipts of purchases made through Concur, or 2) by shortcode for a relevant University of Michigan organization.

Can I collect my grant as a check or in cash?

No. Grants can only be reimbursed by submitting a receipt or shortcode.

Small Grants

How should my completed small grant application be formatted?

Your entire grant must be submitted as a PDF document. The Grant must address each section of the proposal explicitly, and there must both a timeline of your project AND a exhaustive budget table. Acceptable grant applications will be available on the BLI Grants and Funding page of the website.

What is the rolling submission process for BLI Small Projects/Community Outreach Grants?

Small Project/Community Outreach Grants are evaluated on a weekly basis. Applicants will be notified regarding the status of their grant within 4-10 working days of their submission. Typically, grant application decision will be sent back to applicants on Wednesday, and grants must be submitted the previous Wednesday by 11:59 PM in order to be evaluated for the following Wednesday.

When can I collect my grant reward?

Immediately after having received the award notice you are eligible to collect your reward via submitting receipts or via shortcode. All award funding must be collected by the end of the semester in which the grant was awarded.

I am in a time crunch - I applied for a Small Project/Student Project Grant and because of deadlines I need to have the funds sooner than the grants will be processed. What do I do?

Email Christopher Pumford at bli-progasst9@umich.edu if you are looking for special accomodations for the processing of your grant.

How is the Community Engagement Small Project Grant different from other small project grants?

For grants that focus on community-based social issues (e.g. homelessness, domestic violence, gender inequality, etc.) it is essential that your proposal demonstrate the following:

  • That you have researched the topic area and all relevant stakeholders, and can present evidence that supports your current proposal
  • And that the evidence supports your project proposal

We ask that if your project falls within this topic area that you apply for the Community Engagement Grant instead of the basic Small Project Grant. The difference between the two is that you will be required to provide evidence-based research (ie studies, surveys, articles, etc) in support of the points listed above.

Student Project Grants

How should my completed Student Project grant application be formatted?

Your entire grant must be submitted as a PDF document. The grant must address each section of the proposal explicitly, and there must both a timeline of your project AND a exhaustive budget table. Acceptable grant applications will be available on the BLI Grants and Funding page of the website.

What is the submission and review process for BLI Student Project grants?

Applicants will be notified of receipt of their application with 2-5 business days. Review of grant applications with occur within 5-7 business days following the close of the application. Applicants will be contacted regarding the status of their application, including approval, rejection or requests for revisions, within 10 days of the close of application.* The application will close on Sunday, February 18 2018 at 11:59PM.

When can I collect my grant reward?

Project grants are awarded to those projects or components of projects that have not yet been completed (e.g. food for a related event, supplies, marketing materials, etc.) Once you have received the award notice, you may submit receipts for reimbursement OR the award funds can be transferred into an eligible SOAR account (must have a shortcode).

I am in a time crunch - I applied for a Small Project/Student Project Grant and because of deadlines I need to have the funds sooner than the grants will be processed. What do I do?

Email Christopher Pumford at bli-progasst9@umich.edu if you are looking for special accomodations for the processing of your grant.

*All timeframes are subject to change.

Other Common FAQs

Who can I speak with if I have questions about how to write a grant application?

We invite you to contact Christopher Pumford, Program Assistant, with all of your questions and concerns! His email is bli-progasst9@umich.edu, and he has office hours every week. Office hours are currently Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 12 to 2:15.

What happens if I am awarded a Grant, but I do not write the required reflection and blog post on time?

Failure to write the required reflection/blog post will be noted and may affect your eligibility to receive future grants and Access Opportunities.

I was awarded funding by the BLI! What is this Final Report that is part of the Grant process?

You must submit a final report to the BLI staff within 10 days of your project’s completion. This report should include the following: a summary of your project, including how well it followed your original goals which were established in the grant proposal, any challenges you encountered and how you dealt with them, how your team developed leadership skills (using the BLI Habits as context), any next-steps should there be any next steps of this project.The suggested length of the document is 1-1/2 pages, single spaced. All final reports should be submitted to Christopher Pumford at bli-progasst9@umich.edu as a PDF attachment.

And what about the required Blog Post?

The Blog Post should be an engaging recount of your experience executing your project. There are no length parameters to this writing. Unlike the final report, you are free to include pictures and media to augment your writing. These blog posts will be uploaded to the BLI website’s Student Voices blog, so be sure to construct something that you would feel comfortable presenting to your peers! Please submit this as a PDF attachment to bli-progasst9@umich.edu.

Should I proofread my Grant Proposal before submitting it to the ApplicantStack website?

Yes, you should always proofread your work. Grant proposals are critiqued on a number of factors, including grammar.

Example Grants

Below are some examples of exemplary grants submitted in the past. They are annotated to provide context regarding what they did well and what can be improved.

Example Grant 1

Example Grant 2

Example Grant 3

Example Grant 4