September 20, 2017

Academic Year 2017-18 Events Calendar

Faculty Events Calendar 2017-18
Sponsored Projects Administration
For more information: Stan Geidel (sgeidel@bsu – 285-2022)
or Jessie Roark ( – 285-5003)

SPA Colloquia: Faculty learning opportunities in a variety of formats on topics of interest pertaining to sponsored projects. Features faculty peers, Sponsored Projects Administration personnel, and other special guest panelists.
Focus on the Search: Workshops covering the funding search databases and techniques used at Ball State. Workshops are open to faculty, staff, and students. Registration through the minicourse system required. 
Special Events: Research Week; Researcher of the Year and Creative Endeavor of the Year Lectures; Student Symposium.
Updates: Be sure to check our blog at for the latest schedule changes and updates.


7             SPA Colloquia: The Cohen Grants – Writing Effective Applications.
   Presenters: Larry Gerstein & Jackie Buckrop (3:00 pm, Bracken Library 104)
8             Focus on the Search: Part 1 (1:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
13           SPA Colloquia: Finding the Best Sponsor Fit for your Project. Presenter: Jackie Davis
   (Noon, Art & Journalism Bldg, Atrium Dining Room)
14           Focus on the Search: Part 2 (2:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required


6             SPA Colloquia: Applying for a Discovery Grant.  Presenter: Jackie Davis
               (3:00 pm, Bracken Library 104)
12           Focus on the Search: Part 1 (11:00am, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
18           SPA Colloquia: Devil on Your Shoulder: Overcoming 4 Bad habits that Can Sink Your
   Grant. Presenter: Donna Browne (Noon, Art & Journalism Bldg, Atrium Dining Room)
19           Focus on the Search: Part 2 (1:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
24           Research Week: Janay Sander, Research Week Honoree.
   Presentation: Janay Sander with SPA staff.  (3:00-5:00pm, Bracken Library 104)
25           Research Week: Cathy Whaley, Research Week Honoree.
   Presentation: Cathy Whaley with SPA staff. (3:00-5:00pm, Bracken Library 104)
26           Research Week: VJ Rubenstein, Research Week Honoree.
   Presentation: VJ Rubenstein with SPA staff.  (3:00-5:00pm, Bracken Library 104)
27           Researcher of the Year/Creative Endeavor of the Year Lectures.
   Presenters: Scott Trappe and Chris Flook (3:00-5:00pm, Bracken Library 104)


3             SPA Colloquia: Immersive Learning: Student Engagement + Community Impact.
   Presenter: Kelli Huth (3:00 pm, Bracken Library 104)
7             Focus on the Search: Part 1 (5:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
8             Focus on the Search: Part 2 (5:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
15           SPA Colloquia: Finding Matching Funds for your Grant Application.
   Presenters: Augusta Isley & Jackie Davis (Noon, Art & Journalism Bldg,
   Atrium Dining Room)


17           SPA Colloquia: Invest in Your Idea!: Concept Papers Save Time and Grief When Deadlines
   Loom. Presenter:  Donna Browne (Noon, Art & Journalism Bldg, Atrium Dining Room)
18           Focus on the Search: Part 1 (2:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
24           Focus on the Search: Part 2 (2:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
26           SPA Colloquia: Shining a Light on the Mysterious World of Contracts and Grants.
   Presenter: Ted Kolodka (3:00 pm, Bracken Library 104)


7             Focus on the Search: Part 1 (11:00am, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
9             SPA Colloquia: Proposal Resubmissions: Addressing Reviewer Comments.
               Presenter: Justin Miller (3:00 pm, Bracken Library 104)
14           SPA Colloquia: Research and Scholarship in the Fisher Institute of Wellness.
               Presenter: Youfa Wang (Noon, Bracken Library 104)
15           Focus on the Search: Part 2 (11:00am, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required


14           SPA Colloquia: Voyage into the Real World: Working with Community Partners and Local
   Funders. Presenter: Donna Browne (Noon, Art & Journalism Bldg, Atrium Dining Room)
21           Focus on the Search: Part 1 (5:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
27           Focus on the Search: Part 2 (5:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
30           SPA Colloquia: Preparing an Effective NIH AREA Grant Application.
   Presenters: Jackie Davis & Maria Bumbalough (3:00 pm, Bracken Library 104)


6             SPA Colloquia: The Fulbright Experience. Presenter: Justin Miller
               (3:00 pm, Bracken Library 104)
11           SPA Colloquia: NEH Summer Stipends – Preparing an Effective Application.
               Presenter: Augusta Isley (Noon, Art & Journalism Bldg, Atrium Dining Room)
17           Student Symposium
·         Look for registration information in early January
19           Focus on the Search: Part 1 (2:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required
23           Focus on the Search: Part 2 (2:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required

September 18, 2017

Finding the Best Sponsor FIT for your Project

Jackie Davis led SPA’s second colloquium of the year Wednesday, September 13, 2017 in the Atrium. This session was packed full of important tips and advice to remember when searching for your project’s sponsor.


Davis began the session with the acronym FIT, which must be considered when looking for a sponsor.


Jackie Davis smiles as her audience interacts
with her during her presentation.
When thinking about funds, be sure to consider the amount of restrictions and the use of the funds.

Intention refers to the intentions of the funds and the intentions of the sponsor. Do their intentions fit with the purpose of your project, your goals and your project objectives?

Timing does not just refer to the application deadline, but also when the money will be distributed. Some sponsors pay on a schedule based on deliverables, some wait until the end or they will withhold the last payment to make sure you submit your project reports.

“A lot of the funds Ball State receives are cost reimbursements,” said Davis, “We pay the money and then we invoice the sponsor and then they reimburse us.”

Timing of funds is a consideration that Sponsored Projects can help you with.

Like a Glove

In addition to making your sponsor FIT, it is important to make sure your sponsor fits your project like a glove.

Davis handed out gloves to everyone who attended the colloquium. The gloves varied in sizes, colors and types. She made many valuable points by asking the audience if their gloves fit and what they could be used for.

An audience member shows off her
glove, which is a perfect fit.
“What is my purpose? If the purpose is to keep your hand warm, then lots of these gloves will serve your purpose. If your purpose is to go play a softball game then only one of these gloves will be helpful,” said Davis. 

Think of your sponsor as a glove, and remember to ask yourself these important questions. Does my project fit within in the sponsor’s mission, does it fit within the timeline or are you forcing your hand into the glove?

Additional Advice to Consider

  • Talk to the program officer that’s why they’re there, and sometimes you need a collaborator to help find the right fit. 
  • Every sponsor, opportunity and deadline has different priorities, instructions and requirements.
  • When it comes to deadlines, don’t assume you know because you have submitted to them before, many sponsors make changes every year. 
  • Read the guidelines carefully and follow them exactly, because there’s nothing more frustrating than getting thrown out for not following directions. 
  • What the program officer says goes, because it’s all about relationship building. You must respect their decisions. 
  • Relate your organization, your project and your program to the sponsor’s mission. What is the significance and why should your sponsor care? 
  • Grant writing is telling a story, it is persuasive writing. 
  • Include a contingency plan. Your proposal is a straight line, but that isn’t real life, so have a back-up plan from the beginning.

Remember to make sure you sponsor FITs like a glove, and that one size does not fit all. Sometimes you will have to make a change to your project in order to fit. If they advise you to change, make sure it is something you can live with. You do not have to change if you don’t want to, but make sure you are a perfect piece to their puzzle.

Upcoming Events

Check out these additional events that can help you with finding a sponsor!

Focus on the Search Sessions
  • Focus on the Search: Part 1 – Oct. 12 (11:00am, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required.
  • Focus on the Search: Part 2 – Oct. 20 (2:00pm, SPA Conference Room) Registration Required. 
  • Click here to register.

SPA Colloquia: Applying for a Discovery Grant – Oct. 6 (3:00pm, Bracken Library 104)

September 13, 2017

Fast-approaching Deadline for Peace Research Projects

Ball State professors with research interests in achieving peace in the world don’t have much time to put together a fund-worthy project. Cohen Peace Fellowship committee members who are also Ball State faculty kicked off the 2017-2018 Colloquia season with their information session about the fellowship on Thursday, September 7th at Bracken Library. 

Benjamin Cohen, a Muncie, Indiana native, was an architect in President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal legislation as well as the United Nations. The fund is a lasting memorial to Cohen by fostering new ideas to peacemaking problems.

Research projects will be considered in one of two areas – basic research and applied research. Basic research involves expanding knowledge about issues affecting world peace employing statistical, analytical, or qualitative tools. Applied research is designed to solve practical problems associated with world peace that will improve the human condition.

Successfully funded projects lay out a blueprint of tasks on how to accomplish research goals and a realistic timeline. That’s according to Dr. Lawrence Gerstein, the George and Frances Ball Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Director of Ball States Center for Peace and Conflict. Both Gerstein and Dr. Jacquelyn Buckrop, Assistant to the Provost, emphasized the importance of defining peace within the research application and the ability to be salient and succinct about the project in the limited application space.

“Proposals fall short due to lack of definitions and linkage to research. Poorly written applications with typos, grammar mistakes, lack of proof reading will be sent to the bottom of the pile,” said Buckrop.

Committee reviewers are from multiple disciplines. Gerstein and Buckrop stressed the need to translate projects for committee members. They suggested asking someone outside your discipline proof proposals. 

“We’re looking for a cogent argument that you understand the fund’s mission,” said Gerstein.
Other advice included:

Dr. Lawrence Gerstein and Dr. Jacquelyn Buckrop
spoke to faculty and students at Bracken Library.
They stressed proposals should contribute
towards the goal of peace.
§  Well-written

§  Follow guidelines

§  Include definition of peace

§  Connect peace to your research

§  Look at the projects impact

§  Decide if it’s worthwhile


The Cohen Fellowship is considered external funding. Faculty will have to meet with their college’s proposal managers within Sponsored Projects Administration by October 2nd in order to be considered for the fellowship. Final proposals are due by October 31st, 2017 at 5:00 P.M. Graduate students are eligible but must have a faculty sponsor and are also required to meet with SPA proposal managers in order to be eligible.

Gerstein said he is open to receiving ideas before the October 2nd deadline but will not help researchers flesh out ideas.

World peace isn’t expected overnight from proposed research projects but there is an expectation that the research will have an impact. An award of up to $50,000 is available to support a one-year or a multiple year project. Funding starts July 1st, 2018.

Be sure to take a look at SPA’s Colloquia Series which continues through the Spring here.

September 06, 2017

Mark your Calendar for this year's SPA Colloquia Series!

ASPiRE Fall 2017 Competition Deadlines

Are you a Ball State faculty member, professional personnel or student looking for support for your research / creative endeavors? Check out the ASPiRE Internal Grant Program. Several deadlines are approaching for the following competitions:

New Faculty Start-Up: Sept. 20, 2017

Hollis: Oct. 1, 2017

Grad Research / Creative Arts: Oct. 20, 2017

Advance / CREATE: Nov. 1, 2017

For questions regarding the ASPiRE Program, please email You can also view the full 2017-2018 event calendar here.