Team Grants for Interdisciplinary Activities (TGIA)

Application Deadline

January 23, 2022

General Information

The Team Grants for Interdisciplinary Activities (TGIA) provide financial support for a team of faculty members to offer an intensive, interdisciplinary 10-week summer research experience for at least two and up to five Penn undergraduates.   Priority will be given to applications submitted by interdisciplinary teams of faculty members (ie spanning different fields, departments, and/or schools).

These grants are designed to provide faculty with valuable research assistance and to engage high-achieving Penn undergraduates in innovative research projects. While the student experience may be linked to a larger faculty research project, the primary goal is to engage students in academic scholarship, so students should be featured prominently in all phases of the project. Furthermore, while explicitly providing support for projects designed to take place for ten weeks during the summer, we expect this experience will encourage the development of a continuing research mentoring relationship between the team leader(s) and students.

Faculty members in any discipline from any of Penn’s twelve schools are encouraged to apply.  Applications from faculty from underrepresented groups and teams of faculty comprised from across disciplines are particularly welcome.  Faculty may not simultaneously receive funding from the Team Grants for Interdisciplinary Activities (TGIA) and the University Research Foundation (URF).  Priority will be given to faculty members who have not previously received funding via this mechanism.

While at least one team member must be a standing faculty member; lecturers, post-docs and graduate students may also be included.   Engaging the local community by including Philadelphia high school students is encouraged. 

Participating undergraduates must be first-, second- or third-year students at the time of application.  Fourth-year students are ineligible even if they are not graduating, if they are submatriculating, or if they are planning to be on campus post-graduation.  Students must be full-time, regularly enrolled undergraduates in good standing to receive funding. All undergraduate participants will receive a $4500 award and the mentor(s) will collectively receive up to $10,000 for associated research expenses.


Procedure for Application

Please use this template to create one .pdf for upload:

  • Statement of Novelty (350 word limit): Indicate how this proposal is distinctive from your existing work and why this mechanism is necessary to support the initiative
  • Statement on Interdisciplinary Nature of Project (350 word limit): Explicitly address what component(s) of this proposal is interdisciplinary, including what techniques, skills, analyses, data, etc will be utilized from different disciplinary schools of thought.  In defining “interdisciplinary” the focus should be on the expertise and competences of the involved mentors as opposed to their departmental or school appointments
  • Proposal (2 page limit): include statement of importance, background, questions/hypotheses/problems, and methodology.  Indicate the expertise each team leader will contribute to the project.
  • Undergraduate Mentorship Plan (750 word limit):  Detail specific ways in which undergraduates will be actively mentored, with special attention given to the learning outcomes associated with the student experience.  Outside of the research/scholarly/creative activities, define the value added of any planned didactic components of the program.  Include former advising roles and undergraduate mentorship.
  • Explanation of team rationale (750 word limit): describe how individuals will work together to provide a  collaborative environment.  Justify the planned role for each student and explain the rationale behind the total number of students involved.
  • Plans for Continued Undergraduate Involvement (750 word limit): Describe the plan for continued undergraduate involvement in the proposed project beyond the initial 10-week summer experience.
  • Budget (1 page limit): This budget should only address the 10K grant as student stipends are separate.  Allowable Costs:  supplies, non-faculty salaries*, travel expenses, equipment costs related to the project, etc. Faculty salaries and graduate tuition are not allowable expenses.  All requests must be justified as essential to the project. *Note that while non-faculty salaries are allowable, explanation of why they cannot be covered by other mechanisms must be outlined and they will not be given funding priority.

Faculty Applications should be submitted here

Upon request, CURF will work with faculty members to identify undergraduates to complete a research team.  Faculty members may then review applications and conduct interviews prior to selecting the students they would like to include on their research team. 

Project proposals will be evaluated by a faculty committee designated by CURF and selected for funding based on conceptual clarity, interdisciplinary approach, level of feasible involvement of undergraduates in the research plan, and potential for continued student involvement. Projects involving 3 or more undergraduates will be given priority.

Expectations for Grant Recipients

Investigators awarded funds for research expenses will be asked to submit a final report within one month of project completion.  All involved undergraduates will present a poster at a designated CURF event and submit a summary suitable for posting on CURF’s website.  The summary should describe the project’s goals and content, what the student learned through the research experience and how participating in this research project contributed to the educational experience.   

The 2016 recipients project can be found here:   The BLAST Group, 2016 recipients. liftoff




Past Projects Funded

Research Offering Type

Research Assistant

Research Offering Location

Research Eligibility: 

Undergraduate School

College Engineering Nursing Wharton

Research Offering Source