Creative Endeavors

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Fall 2021 Note: CUSE has updated our funding policies as of August 4, 2021. It is vital that you review them before proceeding with a grant application.






*All students applying to CUSE grants MUST do the following before submitting an application:*

  1. Review the CUSE funding policies and contact us with any questions.
  2. Review the information provided on CUSE grant deadlines
  3. Review the CUSE budget crafting policies and guidelines.
  4. Review the international travel and registration guidelines if your work is taking you outside of the United States. 
  5. Review the requirements for human subjects research and the IRB to see if your project requires the certification. 
  6. Review the CUSE post-grant requirements to familiarize yourself with your responsibilities when you return.
  7. Meet with a CUSE advisor prior to submitting an application. Students who fail to meet with an advisor are at a disadvantage in the grant review process.

All students are expected to have reviewed the information and taken the necessary steps relevant to their project before continuing to the application steps below. Once you have completed steps 1-7, proceed to the instructions below for compiling your application.

Creative Endeavors

Successful Creative Endeavor grant applications have funded the creation, production, and performance of works in a variety of media: film, television, theater; photography, painting, sculpture, and other studio art; play- and screenwriting; composition; musical and dramatic performance; and creative writing. Regardless of medium, students should ensure their grant application reflects both their own engagement with their project’s artistic tradition and a high degree of technical ability in the chosen medium. The grant application should also outline the student’s chosen approach to the genre, and provide a justification for that approach. The goal of this project is the production of an excellent piece of original work.

Grant Application Requirements:
  1. An Abstract outlining your proposed project.
    • Provide 100-200 word abstract describing the proposed project or activity. The abstract should introduce your project/activity and highlight your major goals. For assistance writing an abstract, see this guide to abstracts and this abstract example.
  2. A Proposal (4-5 double-spaced pages) that includes:
    1. An Introduction that states: the proposed project; the topic, question, or issue that you wish to investigate; and the anticipated significance of the project in lay terms.  For creative endeavors, you should describe what art is being produced and the issue or problem it addresses.
    2. A Background that explains the issues related to the project; a brief review of work that has already been done in the area of your project; and a clear, compelling rationale for the project. This section should demonstrate a familiarity with the traditions of the chosen medium as well as thoughtful engagement with contemporary scholarship relevant to the project. For creative endeavors, this includes many different types of scholarship; literary criticism, theories about art, history, auteur theories and artist biographies would all be considered relevant scholarship. In-text citations AND a short bibliography of relevant scholarship must be included in the proposal.
    3. A Project Design/Methodology section that provides a detailed description of the creative techniques that will be used and justification for this approach.
    4. A Student Credentials & Faculty Collaboration section. This section should demonstrate two things: your competence in your chosen medium and that your project will have guidance from an appropriate faculty member. Use this section to detail both your experience working in with your chosen medium and what mentorship you expect to have for this project. You may attach photographs, website links, or other examples of your work to demonstrate your credentials.
    5. A clear Statement of Project Goals section. This section should address your project in the light of your artistic, academic, and professional goals.  What are those goals? How will creating this work help you accomplish those goals?  Explain what this project will add to your portfolio, which skills it will help you to develop, and what kind of knowledge you hope to gain by completing it. The most persuasive proposals clearly indicate how this particular event contributes to your long-term trajectory by preparing you for the job market of your chosen career or providing an essential learning experience for your creative field with explicit, specific language.
  3. A Letter of Recommendation from a supervising Notre Dame faculty member.
    • After you have submitted your proposal using the Student Grant Application System, the faculty member should receive an email with instructions for submitting their letter. Faculty will not be able to submit their letter until after the proposal has been submitted. Grant proposals will not be reviewed until we receive a faculty recommendation letter.
  4. An itemized Budget using the approved CUSE student budget form
    • CUSE budget guidelines can be found here. The budget must be itemized and show all your calculations for figuring out each cost and a source to justify those calculations.  It is the student's responsibility to develop a budget that is complete and accurate. Students must submit their budget on the Student Grant Application System with the student budget form. Any changes to a budget after the project is awarded, such as transfers between line items, must be pre-approved by CUSE. 
  5. A completed domestic travel waiver if traveling within the United States. Students traveling internationally must register their travel with Notre Dame International.
  6. Human subjects / IRB approval, if applicable.
    • Students engaging in research involving human subjects must complete research ethics training and submit a protocol to the Institutional Review Board (IRB) for approval. Students who require IRB approval to conduct research must submit a copy of the approval from Notre Dame Research. Follow the link for more information on IRB and the training and submission process
Funding Limits:
  • The average funding provided for Creative Endeavors is $2,000 during the academic year and $3,000 during the summer. 
  • CUSE will consider requests for higher funding amounts on a case by case basis.