Sample Grant Proposals

Journalism - Academic Year URG Proposal

Female Social Entrepreneurship in Uganda: The Changing Face of Young Female Entrepreneurs in an Evolving Media Age

For years, women in Uganda have been recognized as the more entrepreneurial gender in the small business sector. The rise of the digital age has seen increasing accessibility to the Internet and simultaneous usage of different media platforms like social media. This evolution of media and its widespread use in Uganda’s capital of Kampala has influenced a steady rise of the young social entrepreneur. Ideas learned from a global platform are implemented and customized for the Ugandan consumer.

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Journalism, Documentary Film - Summer Group URG Proposal

Green Bananas

Along the southwest coastal fields of Ecuador and in the offices of fair trade product distributor Equal Exchange ripens a movement to change the structure of the banana industry. The legacy of bananas in South America is a highly political one, though many U.S. consumers do not know that this nutritious breakfast fruit happens to be the symbol of twentieth century U.S. involvement in Latin America, the region’s capitalist transformation and intense popular struggle.

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Mathematics - Summer URG Proposal

The Logarithmic Sobolev Inequality

(NOTE: Do not use this sample proposal as a formatting model. Current and future URG applications must be 2 pages single spaced with 1 inch margins, and the use of internal headings is discouraged.) The topic of my project is the logarithmic Sobolev inequality, an inequality for a certain type of integral which has numerous applications in both pure and applied mathematics—including partial differential equations, mathematical statistics, and quantum mechanics.

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Mechanical Engineering -- Academic Year URG Proposal

Improving Mechanical Characterization of Biofilms

Biofilms are communities of microorganisms such as bacteria that attach to boundaries separating different phases of matter, such as a solid surface in contact with a liquid (Wimpenny et al., 2000). Characterizing the structure and mechanical properties of microbial biofilms is highly important to understanding their overall function, but current methods are individually insufficient to fully characterize the biofilm and there are large inconsistencies between methods (Böl, 2013).

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Music -- Summer URG Proposal

Latina Riot Grrrls: Louder than ever? How the Riot Grrrl label functions for legacy bands.

The most attractive thing about punk is its dedication to stand against the status quo in hopes to create a more just world. Punk has been a vehicle for political movements against poverty, sexism, homophobia, racism, and other forms of systematic inequality. It is the art of rebellion, but also of deep care and love for the well being of marginalized and oppressed peoples. Punk rock has roots in activism, but like many other genres, has been converted into a commodity that lost its justice seeking purpose in order to appeal to a larger audience.

Musical Language - Summer URG Proposal

e.e. cummings and Contemporary American Art Song

An art song is a genre of classical music traditionally written for piano and voice while setting the text of a poem. The art song has long been considered by scholars to be a look into the cultural and historical context of its originating country; extensive research has been done on the settings of Goethe by Schubert and Schumann (German lied) or the settings of Verlaine by Debussy and Fauré (French chanson). However, the contemporary American art song lacks the same attention.

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Political Science and International Studies - Academic Year URG Proposal

Enforcement of the Russian Smoking Ban

This study seeks to examine the political development, legislative enactment, and government enforcement of the intended Russian public smoking ban. This new law, in effect since June 1, 2013, has made it illegal for people to smoke in universities, schools, government buildings, and outside metro stations in a country where smoking is ubiquitous.

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Psychology - Summer URG Proposal

Not Just For Kids: The Advantages of Adult Play

In a child’s world, nearly everything seems related to play. Every new person, sound, and object is somehow exciting and captivating, and it is from this stimulation that the child develops new cognitive capacities and builds interpersonal relationships. As such, an entire field of psychology is dedicated to studying child play and the ways in which it contributes to psychologically and physically healthier children (Ginsburg, 2007; Vygotsky, 1967). Research among adults, however, is limited and inconclusive.

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Psychology and Cognitive Science - Summer URG Proposal

Neurophysiological Profiles of Reward-Sensitivity in Bipolar Spectrum Symptoms

Bipolar disorder is the seventh leading cause of disability worldwide and affects one to two percent of the United States population, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Past psychological research has linked mood disorders to individual differences in reward-sensitivity, indicating that bipolar disorder is associated with high sensitivity to reward (Nusslock et. al), whereas unipolar depression (without mania) is associated with low sensitivity to reward (Pizzagalli, Jahn, O’Shea, 2005).

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Radio/TV/Film (documentary) -- Academic Year Group URG Proposal

Pangaea: Exploring Children's Memories of Katrina Through Film

August of 2015 marked the ten-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and the ensuing levee malfunction that left many people dead, injured, and homeless. In those ten years, a variety of narratives

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Radio/TV/Film (screenplay) -- Summer URG Proposal

Red Corner: Capturing Contemporary Russian-American Relations through Research on the Russian Immigrant Community in Los Angeles

What impact does the recent rise in antagonism between Russia and the United States have on the Russian immigrant community living in Los Angeles? This often-ignored subculture, which identifies as both Russian and American, provides a unique lens through which to compare traditional Russian ideologies with more progressive Western perspectives.

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Radio/TV/Film -- Summer URG Proposal

Maori Fourth Cinema: The Influence of Gender on Community Representation in the Filmmaking of Barry Barclay and Merata Mita

Indigenous communities across the globe have used film as an effective medium for resistance and a way to tell their own stories. The Maori of New Zealand have produced a strong film industry that embodies community, collaboration, and reciprocity to empower their people. I plan to research how the personal experiences of Maori filmmakers Barry Barclay and Merata Mita have influenced their application of community in their films.

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Social Policy and Legal Studies - Summer URG Proposal

The Law in Personal Relationships: Understanding Judicial Decision Making in Domestic Violence Cases

In the 1970s and 80s the feminist and battered women’s movement transformed public perception of domestic violence from a private family matter to a crime punishable by legal sanctions. Consequently, many states passed laws criminalizing domestic violence. In turn, domestic violence cases filled criminal court dockets around the country. Suddenly, judges played a major role in implementing and interpreting domestic violence laws. Additionally, judges exercised considerable latitude when ruling on sentencing, restraining orders, and child custody issues.

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Theater - Summer URG Proposal

Staging Chernobyl: The Regeneration of a Wasteland

What if the items and animals left behind in the Ukrainian city of Pripyat could tell us what happened when the nearby Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant exploded on April 26, 1986? I want to use research on the nuclear accident paired with contemporary scientific studies of wildlife regeneration in the surrounding marshlands to creatively investigate the endurance of life in the face of disaster. I will imbue objects, animals, and human characters with the unique stories of Chernobyl in a play to be performed on campus during the 2014-2015 school year.

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Theater -- Summer URG Proposal

A Play on Plath: Depression and Suicide on Colledge Campuses

The celebrated poet Sylvia Plath committed suicide at the age of 30. Her two children, Nicholas and Frieda Hughes, were sleeping in the other room when she took her life. Nicholas Hughes was one year old when his mother died; he was never able to talk to her as an adult. Nicholas suffered from depression like his mother, and in 2009, he hung himself. He was 47 years old. I plan to write a two-person full-length play, in which Sylvia Plath convinces her son, Nicholas Hughes, to reconsider committing suicide. I will present a mother and son who never had an adult relationship.

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