- Northeastern: 10/02/2019
This award is one of the Project-Based Exploration for the Advancement of Knowledge (PEAK) Experiences Awards. Please review the PEAK Experiences Awards overview page to see the entire list of experiences and determine which one is right for you.
As you travel your path, you will get to know many communities along the way. Your time in these communities will mean not only a chance to enjoy their vibrancy, but also discovering potential opportunities to give back by applying your skills to current challenges and needs.
This award is for undergraduates who want to use their interdisciplinary research and creative skills to construct and execute a long-term group project, in collaboration with a community partner, that responds to a particular challenge or problem in the Boston area. You want to build a bridge between Northeastern and its neighbors, as well as between the intellectual realm of research and the practical world of service.
Bridge-Builder projects combine elements of community service and academic research and work closely with organizations that have deep community roots, embodying the Northeastern ethos of experience-based learning while empowering students to become ethical and effective citizens and change agents. For instance, a project group might use education research to shape its approach to tutoring students at a local school, while another group might conduct an applied research project that advances the goals of a non-profit serving a Boston neighborhood.
US Citizenship Not Required
This award is for full-time, currently enrolled Northeastern university undergraduates working as a group. It is open to undergraduates from all years and majors, but would be a particularly good fit for groups whose members collectively combine an understanding of research and creative methods in their field(s) with a dedication to meaningful, respectful, and innovative community engagement.
While in classes, students should generally not devote more than 20 hours per week to a research or creative project.
Proposals are evaluated on their overall quality, relevant experience and preparation of the team members, demonstrated alignment with community need and evidence of genuine community engagement, and feasibility of the proposed research methodology and service activity.
Groups offered this award receive a grant of up to $1,000 to support their work over the course of the academic year. They also receive intensive mentoring from the staff and Faculty Fellows of the Office of Undergraduate Research and Fellowships. Funds can be used for project equipment and supplies, project events, and project-related travel costs within the Boston area.
Groups may apply to continue their projects in future academic years.
Applications can be submitted via Northeastern’s Internal Fellowships Portal and consist of four parts:
- an online form which collects your basic biographical and project information;
- a 1-2 page project proposal, uploaded as a PDF;
- a project timeline, uploaded as a PDF; and
- an itemized project budget, uploaded as a PDF.
The project proposal should clearly and concisely describe the following:
- Background: Describe the challenge or issue area your project will address. Provide context for your project. Identify the questions that arise from this challenge: what does your project intend to understand, engage with, discover, create, invent, address?
- Significance: Why is the project is important, from a service perspective, a research perspective and a personal perspective (for your growth and that of your peers)? Address what new information, scholarship, knowledge, or mode of practice is expected to result from the project. How will the project build a bridge between the realm of research and the realm of action?
- Community Partners: Which organization or community partners does your group plan to work with? Describe any contact or prior relationship you have with the community partner, if applicable.
- Project Personnel: The people you are working with and how their talents will contribute to project completion or what types of attributes you are seeking in new members. Please share names of those who will be participating.
- Methodology: The theory and techniques on which your project will rely, as well as a specific course of action for carrying the project through to completion.
- Anticipated challenges and how you will overcome them.
- Ethics: Reflect on the ethical implications of advocating for social change within communities and/or around issues outside of your own lived experience. How do you plan to do your work responsibly, respectfully, and on a foundation of genuine community engagement?
- Describe the resources required for project planning and implementation (thinking beyond finances) and how you might access these.
- Outcomes and Dissemination: Anticipated outcomes or products of this project and your plan to share your results with your partner organization, within the Northeastern community, and more broadly.
- Evaluation: The plan that will be used to evaluate the project’s outcomes. The plan should specify the criteria that will be used to measure the success and impact of the project. Include both qualitative and quantitative criteria, if possible.
The following components are uploaded separately:
- Timeline: A detailed timeline of the steps necessary to implement the project over the course of the academic year. Prepare the timeline on a separate page (not counted toward the 1-2 page limit for your narrative proposal).
- Budget: A preliminary itemized budget for up to $1,000. Prepare the budget on a separate page (not counted toward the 1-2 page limit for your narrative proposal).