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K-State Today

October 10, 2014

Scientific research society offers Grants-in-Aid of Research programs

Submitted by Ruth Welti

National Sigma Xi and Kansas State University's chapter of Sigma Xi, the scientific and engineering research society, is offering national and local competitions for small grants through the Grants-In-Aid of Research programs.

The upcoming deadline for both local and national grant applications is Oct. 15.

Sigma Xi is a diverse organization of members dedicated to the advancement of science and engineering. Sigma Xi and its chapters have developed programs and activities that recognize research accomplishment, support science education and student research, and promote publishing and research ethics. In addition, the society advocates collaboration among researchers in different disciplines in science and engineering and the globalization of science.

National award: The national program awards grants of up to $1,000 to undergraduate and graduate students from all areas of the sciences and engineering. Designated funds from the National Academy of Sciences allow for grants of up to $5,000 for astronomy research and $2,500 for vision related research. Students may use the funding to pay for travel expenses to and from a research site, or for purchase of nonstandard laboratory equipment necessary to complete a specific research project.

While membership in Sigma Xi is not a requirement for applying for national funding from the Grants-in-Aid of Research program, approximately 75 percent of funds are restricted for use by dues-paying student members of Sigma Xi or students whose project advisor is a dues-paying member of Sigma Xi.

See instructions in the application. A letter of recommendation and a research description are required.

University award: The university chapter of Sigma Xi Grant-In-Aid of Research Award is aimed at K-State graduate students. The national level program is highly competitive — few proposals are funded, with awards ranging from $400 to $1,000 — and many outstanding proposals are not funded. Through the local chapter's award, the university chapter will enhance the research of an excellent K-State graduate student.

Who may apply: Current K-State graduate students who are members of Sigma Xi and/or whose faculty advisers are members of the university chapter of Sigma Xi, current 2014-2015, and who are submitting an application to the national level Sigma Xi Grant-In-Aid of Research program for the Oct. 15 deadline are eligible. Please note that these eligibility guidelines are more restrictive than those outlined for the national level grants.

Award: Of submitted proposals that are not funded as part of the national competition, one will be selected for funding at the level of $400 by the chapter. The award will be made by Jan. 15, 2015, and will additionally be announced at a spring event.

Application process: The proposal submitted for this award must be the same proposal submitted to Sigma Xi for the national level competition; see above. To be considered for the chapter award, application materials must be submitted additionally to the chapter by emailing sdflemin@k-state.edu for the 2014-2015 award cycle.

Applicants must:
1. Provide name, contact information, advisor's name, advisor's contact information. Indicate whether student and/or advisor are Sigma Xi members.
2. Submit uploaded application materials, including the PDF submitted to Sigma Xi, containing project title, 500-word proposal narrative with no more than two images embedded in the narrative, project budget, literature cited, electronically to committee chair Sherry Fleming at sdflemin@k-state.edu.
3. Have the individual writing the letter of recommendation additionally send a copy to committee chair Sherry Fleming at sdflemin@k-state.edu.

Applicants must meet the Oct. 15 deadline, and are responsible for noting that materials must be submitted to the chapter as well as to the national society. For information about joining Sigma Xi — new members are welcome — contact chapter President Ruth Welti at welti@k-state.edu.