Grants of up to $500 are available to support student projects that engage technology and the arts. The goal of the grants is to inspire students, whether learning in the classroom, assisting faculty and staff on major projects, or pursuing their own ideas. Independent student work is a cornerstone of the Arts and Technology Initiative and microgrants are a significant way to support student experimentation.
- Deadlines: submissions are accepted on a rolling basis and are reviewed once per month (between October and March)
- Proposals are submitted through an online form including a budget.
- If awarded a grant, final reports are due within 30 days after completing the project
- Microgrants are open to all Mount Holyoke College students.
- Applications may be submitted individually or by groups.
- Groups of students that include faculty may also submit applications, with the understanding that students are the project coordinators who are responsible for managing the funds and providing the required report at the conclusion of the project. Group applicants should note that the funding will not change with the number of people involved in the project.
What We Support
Microgrant funds may be used to defray the cost of hardware or software (if not already available on campus), data storage and web hosting, artists’ supplies, building materials, travel, stipends for off-campus expertise, course training fees, and other expenses related to multimedia projects, performances, exhibits and guest artists.
Proposed budgets should not exceed $500. Applications will be evaluated on the basis of their substance and innovative character and the project’s feasibility within its stated timeframe. An application might, for instance, request funding for:
- Purchasing hardware or microcontrollers (Arduino, Raspberry Pi, etc) to run an interactive art installation
- Costs to participate in conferences and workshops (travel expenses, conference/workshop fees, including on-line offerings, etc) to learn skills to complete a project, e.g. learn metadata and coding approaches for an interactive web art project
- the purchase of studio time for professional assistance to finish a project (such as color grading an original film) provided that the student participates in the session
What We Don't Support
- Direct financial compensation for the student
- Hardware/software that is readily available through LITS (eg cameras, laptops, etc) or other departments. It is your responsibility to contact any relevant departments and/or LITS liaisons to search for equipment.
Preparing Your Budget
- See if the resources you need (equipment, supplies, software, etc) are already available on campus.
- See if your department has funding that can cover or supplement your project expenses. Note on your application and budget form if you were able to find matching or supplementary funding (even an unsuccessful search for additional funding helps demonstrate your resourcefulness).
- Research the cost(s) of the proposed purchases and/or services and note the sources/vendors that you have found on your budget form when possible.
- Download the budget form template and fill it out. When you are ready to submit the proposal, make sure to upload the budget as well.
- Funding requests cannot exceed $500. If your project’s budget is more than $500, you'll need additional funding to cover the difference.
Preparing Your Proposal
- Describe how your project engages the intersection of art and technology. Projects that do not have both a compelling artistic component and a substantial technical element will not be funded.
- Describe your proposed timeline as well as you can. Your project could take more than a year and you may be asking for funding to complete only a part of it.
- Note the role of any project collaborator(s) if you have them.
- What outcome(s) are you hoping to achieve? What do you hope to learn through your project?
Role of the Project Advisor
- You are required to identify a faculty or staff member with relevant expertise, and to discuss your project proposal and budget with them before applying.
- Your project advisor may have suggestions to improve your application, so it's to your advantage to meet with them well before submitting.
- If your project is for academic credit (either as regular coursework or an independent study), the project advisor should be the same faculty member who teaches the course or independent study.
- If your project is not for academic credit, you can ask any faculty or staff member you wish.
- Your project advisor does not need to commit to a specific number of hours or meetings, or to micromanage your work, but they should be available to answer questions, make suggestions, and help you keep your project manageable and on track.
If you are awarded a grant, you are required to:
- provide written documentation (plus photos, video, audio, etc), within one month after the project’s conclusion, to be published on the Arts and Technology Initiative website.
- present your work at a public forum such as the Senior Symposium or a presentation sponsored by the Arts and Technology initiative.
The College retains the right to publicize microgrant-funded projects. All intellectual and physical properties resulting from the project reside with the grantee(s).
Before starting the application form, be sure you have prepared your budget which you will submit as part of your online application. See the instructions under Preparing Your Proposal.