CFP WFI Student Grants for Social Justice

Call for proposals
Villanova University’s Waterhouse Family Institute for the Study of Communication and Society (WFI) is pleased to ANNOUNCE OUR NEW STUDENT GRANT PROGRAM for 2016/17, and OUR INAUGURAL CALL FOR PROPOSALS (DUE APRIL 22, 2016).

The WFI—endowed by Lawrence Waterhouse, Jr., and housed within Villanova University’s Department of Communication—was founded on the principle that students, scholars, activists, and practitioners of communication have an important role to play in the creation of a socially just world. In addition to our WFI Research Grant program, which supports the work of Communication scholars engaging questions of social justice, we are pleased to announce the creation of a program geared to undergraduate students interested in engaging Communication and social justice!

This program was inspired in the Summer of 2014 by a proposal designed and directed by three Villanova undergraduate alums (who, at the time, were ineligible for our existing faculty research grant program). Moved by the proposal, the WFI provided a grant of $12,660 to Lauren Colegrove, Andrew Balamaci, and Nashia Kamal to assist them in continuing to build on the relationships they had established through Villanova’s (WFI-funded) Social Justice Documentary Film Program. They proposed to teach journalism and reporting skills to the high school students at Heritage Academy in Essiam, Ghana, and, further, to help the school establish a newspaper for their students. Going even further, two of these remarkable young Communication activists are now working on a project in Bangladesh for Summer 2016!

So if you know of any students who are innovative, creative, and passionate about social justice—and who would be able to do great things if only they had the budget and opportunity—then please encourage them to submit a proposal to the new WFI Student Grant Program. Proposals are due no later than Friday, April 22, 2016.

Beginning in 2016-17, the WFI will award up to $10,000 to support an undergraduate student-driven project that demonstrates an innovative connection between communication and social justice.

These projects:
–       must center upon undergraduate (not graduate) students in Communication, although faculty may be involved as advisors and/or instructors of record;
–       must meaningfully connect Communication students to the creation of social justice;
–       must be primarily carried out during Fall 2016 and/or Spring 2017.

Although we do not limit our grants to a specific area of Communication, or particular kind of communication advocacy, all projects supported by the WFI have two things in common: they draw upon and engage topics central to the study and practice of Communication, and they specifically engage communication in terms of its impact on the world around us, its ability to create social change.

WFI Student Grants are available to project leaders who are full-time undergraduate students enrolled in good standing at any US institution of higher education. Awards will be no greater than $10,000 for the 2016-17 academic year. These funds may be applied to the acquisition of resources or equipment, technology, travel, event planning, and/or any other appropriate project related expenses. However, these funds may not be used to provide or supplement faculty or student salaries. Funds will be available beginning in July 2016, for use throughout the 2016-17 academic year; again proposals are due no later than April 22, 2016.

For more details on the WFI and this grant program—including specific information on the grant application requirements and proposal submission—please visit:

Questions concerning eligibility, or the nature of projects we support, please contact the Director of the WFI, Dr. Bryan Crable.