The Civic Engagement Fund catalyzes community/university partnerships that advance St. Louis priorities. The fund provides necessary financial support to launch, expand, and at times sustain community partnerships. It also serves as a catalyst and call to action for WashU faculty, staff, and students to develop community initiatives in partnership with St. Louis community organizations.* To promote positive impact and effective partnerships, the Gephardt Institute provides consultation and support through the development and implementation of project plans, site visits, and evaluations. View recent examples of funded projects here.     

All members of the WashU community are encouraged to apply. Successful Civic Engagement Fund applications demonstrate substantial partnerships with one or more St. Louis community organizations.


Three grant categories are available:

  • Grants for St. Louis Projects:
    • Community Planning Grants (up to $1,000)
      • Please check back for fall 2020 deadline.
    • Community Partnership Grants (up to $5,000)
      • Please check back for fall 2020 deadline.
  • Course Development Grants: (faculty only) to support faculty with Community Engaged Courses (up to $5,000)
    • Applications reviewed on a rolling basis.
  • Community Partnership Mini Grants: for community projects in St. Louis region (up to $500)
    • Applications reviewed on a rolling basis during summer 2020

    The Civic Engagement Opportunity Fund provides funding for students from under-resourced socio-economic backgrounds who may need financial assistance in order to secure transportation or purchase resources related to community and civic engagement. Please contact the Office for Student Success or see here for more information.


    Application Process: 

    Submit a Project Overview

    Submit a brief overview of your project, goals, and community partner(s) using this form. Project overviews are due one week prior to your proposal review meeting. 

    Note: If applying for one of our Grants for St. Louis Projects, you are required to submit a Letter of Intent. Your Letter of Intent is due two weeks before the official application deadline.

    Attend a Proposal Review Meeting

    A proposal review meeting is a meeting between the applicant and grant chair. This meeting allows you to ask any questions, receive feedback on a draft of your project proposal/application, and learn about principles for effective community engagement within the St. Louis context. Our Civic Engagement Fund Coordinator will reach out to you in order to set up this meeting.

    Note: If applying for one of our Grants for St. Louis Projects, your proposal review meeting must be completed up to one week before the official application deadline.

    Submit a Final Application

    Finally, submit an application for your grant of choice. This final application should build off of the proposal review meeting and show a thorough understanding of the project and impact. Applications are due at 5:00 PM on each deadline date; late or incomplete applications will not be considered. Decisions are then announced up to four weeks after this deadline.

         

    Funding Procedures

    Funding for Students

    • Funding is provided to individuals in the form of reimbursement upon submission of itemized receipts and successful progress and/or completion of the proposed initiative.
    • Receipts must be submitted within 20 business days following project completion, unless written approval of an extension is received from Gephardt Institute staff.
    • Check (or direct deposit) reimbursements will be available 20 business days after submission of acceptable receipts and documentation.

    Funding for Faculty and Staff

    • Funding for departments may be provided through Inter-Department transfers in advance of project completion, pending department approval.

    Ineligible Requests

    The following request categories are ineligible:

    • Internships or practica
    • Retroactive funding
    • Funds and goods intended for philanthropic donation

    Expectations of Recipients

    • Responsible representation of Washington University and adherence to university judicial code, local and national laws, and high ethical standards for the full duration of project planning and implementation.
    • Written indication of grant support from the Gephardt Institute in project and publicity materials.
    • Completion of summary report form within 30 days of project/course completion, reflecting on project outcomes, learning experiences, and how grant recipient(s) will apply the experience to future endeavors.
    • Contribution of project photos that may be used in Gephardt Institute print and online materials.
    • Participation in any related meetings, trainings, and assessments that may be requested by the Gephardt Institute.

    All grant proposals should align with the Gephardt Institute’s values of inquiry, integrity, empathy, equity, collaboration, and action, and should respond to needs and priorities in the St. Louis region.

    Questions? Contact our Civic Engagement Fund Coordinator: civicengagementfund@wustl.edu


    *Grants focus on St. Louis regional priorities with the rare exception of Community Engaged Courses that travel to other locations.