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Office of Undergraduate Research

Discover Grant Proposal Criteria for Evaluation

The 2017 application is now CLOSED.

Current UR undergraduates may apply for funding to support summer research* on campus or at the URMC, with a research advisor at another institution, or in private industry. Students may also do research as part of an independent project under the guidance of a faculty mentor. Only current, matriculated freshmen, sophomores, juniors and non-graduating seniors may apply. Any research experience after graduation is ineligible for a Discover Grant.

In certain exceptional circumstances, Discover Grant money can be used to pay for things that help make the proposed research happen. It can pay for equipment, necessary travel for research, survey prizes, etc. Since these awards are meant to increase and enhance undergraduate research opportunities, preference is given to proposals that demonstrate clearly that the funding enables a research opportunity to happen where it would not otherwise occur.


Application Process: You will not be able to save an incomplete application and return to it later, so please read the following carefully before you begin!

The application process for summer research funding is:

  • Search for and secure an internship/research opportunity. Opportunity must be secured before applying for funding, and your supervisor will receive a request to confirm your research experience and provide some words of support.
  • Apply Online for Funding– Opens March 1
  • Your application is NOT considered complete until you receive a screen saying "Your submission was saved successfully." You must complete all the pages of the application that come up on your screen.


Application deadline is Monday, April 10, 2017.  All applications will then be reviewed, and funding decisions will be returned to applicants during the week of April 24.

Creating a strong application

As with any important application, we encourage you to put reflection, time and effort into your funding application. The following tips can help you prepare a strong application.

  • Use the Application Checklist worksheet (.doc /.pdf) to compile all of the information you will need to input into the online application. You must complete the application in a single sitting; using the worksheet will reduce errors and help you keep track of information.
  • We encourage you to utilize the Writing, Speaking and Argument Center to review your Budget Justification and Career Impact Statements prior to the deadline. Be concise but complete with your statements.
  • Check the application scoring rubric to understand how applications are evaluated.

In addition, applications with the following have a higher likelihood of receiving funding:

Budget justification:

  • Clearly describes how each budget line was researched and estimated
  • Describes how you will maximize your budget for the summer
  • Explains how receiving Discover Grant funding is important to your ability to complete the research experience

Career Impact statement:

  • Describes your motivation for undertaking the research experience
  • Makes strong connections between the research experience and your academic or career goals

Once submitted, applications are reviewed and students will be notified via email during the week of April 24. Award amounts will be based on budget submitted and typically range from $500 to $2,500.


Please note: If you are a Research & Innovation Grant recipient, you will be expected to use your RIG before you may apply for funding from another source. For more information about how to request a disbursement from your RIG, click here:

*If you are applying for Discover funding that will be used during the regular academic year, please contact the Office of Undergraduate Research at 585.276.5306 or